West News Wire: In order to handle an increase in package deliveries during the crucial holiday season, United Parcel Service announced on Wednesday that it would be hiring more than 100,000 additional workers.

That’s similar to the holiday seasons of 2021 and 2020. Holiday season volumes typically begin to increase in October and continue to be high through January. The hiring plans coincide with a slowdown in online shopping following a pandemic-induced surge, but the numbers are still significantly higher than pre-pandemic levels.

According to UPS, the positions available are primarily for package handlers, drivers, and driver assistants. They are both full- and part-time seasonal positions. UPS touts the seasonal jobs as ones that can lead to year-round employment, saying in recent years that around 35% of workers seeking seasonal package-handling tasks wind up in permanent roles.

The company also said it has further streamlined the job hiring process and touts that it takes just 25 minutes for most people from filling out an online application to receiving a job offer, according to Danelle McCusker Rees, the president of human relations at UPS, who began her career with the company as a seasonal worker. That’s down from 30 minutes a year ago, she said. Also, nearly 80% of seasonal positions do not require an interview, up from 75% a year ago.

Rees told The Associated Press in an interview on Tuesday that she sees the job market just as competitive as a year ago.

Employers added 315,000 jobs in August, about what economists had expected, down from an average 487,000 a month over the past year, according to a government report last week.

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The jobless rate reached 3.7%, its highest level since February. But it increased for a healthy reason: Hundreds of thousands of people went back to the job market, and some didn’t find work right away, which boosted the government’s count of unemployed people.

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