[Source: Austen Sherman, Arizona Republic] — Opportunity still remains for those interested in applying for one of the more than 2,000 remaining U.S. Census jobs in Maricopa County. Lorene Georgianni, director of recruiting for the census’ downtown Phoenix office, said the number of applicants has been lower than expected so far for a total of 8,000 census positions. The five census offices in the county are coming up short of their recruiting goals despite an Arizona unemployment rate of 9.1 percent in December.
Among the reasons: Potential applicants have been deterred by concerns about losing unemployment benefits while working for the census on such a temporary basis. Others have applied who are not permanent citizens, which is a requirement for employment. Al Nieto, local census office manager for Phoenix, said that as long as the state Department of Public Safety is made aware of the temporary status of the job, benefits only will be suspended until the census is complete.
The work is simple, and the pay is good, as workers will receive between $11.25 and $16.50 per hour. To apply, those interested should call 1-866-861-2010. Callers will be asked to enter their ZIP code and directed to the office in their area. Applicants then schedule an appointment that usually lasts around two hours.
At the appointment, applicants will be asked to fill out an application and an I-9 form, as well as complete a 30-minute, 28-question exam. The test has five parts: Clerical skills, reading skills, number skills, evaluating alternatives, and organizational skills. It is a general-knowledge exam and applicants know their score before they leave. If they are unhappy with their score, they are given the opportunity to re-test Once all is completed each applicant is run through an FBI background check before they are officially declared eligible. Job offers will be made beginning at the end of March.
Potential applicants can prepare themselves at http://www.2010censusjobs.gov, where there is a practice exam to give them an idea of what to expect. The majority of available jobs are part-time, with a few being full-time. However, all jobs are temporary, lasting only while the census is being conducted.
Most of the jobs will be in two positions. Enumerators are expected to go out in to the field to follow up on those homes who do not return their form. Clerks work in the office supporting those out in the field. There are also a limited number of jobs as recruiting assistants and as crew leaders, who are in charge of the enumerators. Vangent Inc., is also looking to hire about 300 part-time employees to help with the census. The company has contracted with Lockheed Martin to perform data collection, and its Southwest facility is expected to process 40 percent of the forms. Employees will help staff a hotline for anyone who has census questions. Applications for Vangent Inc. can be completed online at http://www.vangent.com.