Tulsa Businesses Feel Effects Of Hard-Hitting Flu Bug

Thursday, January 29th 2015, 10:53 pm
By: News On 6

With the flu going around, businesses are feeling the effects.

One local recruiting company said it has seen a delay in hiring because so many people have been out sick.

Despite what you might think, the hard-hitting flu bug keeping people from work hasn't increased demand for temporary workers. In fact, one company said too many people are out sick to even recruit temps, and that the hiring process has been hit the hardest.

Carey Baker is the founder and CEO of Pro Recruiters, a staffing company that helps with temporary and permanent placements with companies across Tulsa, and she said flu season has been tough.

"There's been a significant delay in hiring for the month of January because the hiring managers, or the decision makers within the companies that we partner with, have been out sick," Baker said.

Tulsa County has seen the most flu hospitalizations and deaths in the state since September; and with Oklahoma being the hardest hit state in the country, businesses are feeling the effects.

1/29/2015 Related Story: Health Officials Report 11 More Oklahoma Flu-Related Deaths

"It is going to affect our job numbers for the month of January because the number of offers that have been made has definitely been impacted by the flu," Baker said.

It hasn't just impacted employers; prospective employees have been knocked down by the bug this season as well, making things a little tricky for recruiters setting up interviews.

"They don't feel confident in themselves, they don't speak well, they feel like they're coughing, so they want to go in feeling like 100 percent and if they don't feel that way they want to go ahead and cancel an interview," said Senior Recruiter, Shelley Heckenkemper.

Recruiters say that's not necessarily a bad thing and that going to an interview sick probably isn't the best idea.

In fact, at their office, they're recommended to stay home.

"So if anybody has any sick symptoms, sick kids, flu-like symptoms, they've been encouraged to work from home," Baker said.

Since September, around 1,500 people in Oklahoma have been hospitalized for the flu.

According to the CDC, flu season typically peaks in January and February.