The Biz Buzz

Get the most up-to-date news, insights and analysis of Tacoma, Pierce County and South Puget Sound business.

NOTICE: The Biz Buzz has moved.

With the launch of our new website, we've moved The Biz Buzz.
Visit the new section.

Category: Employment/Workplace


Hundreds flock to the first day of State Farm’s job fair in Tacoma

Downtown Tacoma’s newest big employer is hiring, and it has no shortage of candidates.

People came to the Hotel Murano’s Bicentennial Pavilion by the dozen on Tuesday, trying to land a job at State Farm. Doors to the job fair opened at 10 a.m. and the line to register for an interview was in the double-digits for hours.

The company wants to hire about 500 people. Before the job fair even began, more than 1,000 people had filled out applications online.

Angela Campbell of Puyallup graduated from Highline Community College in December and has been looking for work ever since.

Read more »


UPDATED: State Farm announces career fair next week in downtown Tacoma for 500 jobs

This just in, from State Farm regional spokesman Brad Hilliard:

“We are seeking to fill 500 openings at our Job Fair next Tuesday and Wednesday.” The rest of his email:

People interested in a career with State Farm are encouraged to visit to fill out an application then come to the job fair on July 16 or 17 prepared to interview with HR recruiters and department managers.

Candidates will be considered for claim handling and processing careers that focus on customer service. We are looking for career minded individuals who are interested in competitive salaries, great benefits and flexible work schedules.

Read more »


Tacoma Top Food & Drug closing

Walmart’s decision to build a store in Tacoma is already having an effect on the city’s retail landscape, though the retail giant’s store has yet to open.

Tacoma’s Top Food & Drug store, a neighbor of the new Walmart,  will close in four to six weeks, the company announced Wednesday.

The store at 3130 South 23rd Street will soon be competing with Walmart, which opens in mid-summer on the site of the former Tacoma Elks Lodge about a block north of the Top Food location.

Haggen Inc., Top Food & Drug owner, said Walmart’s presence was a factor in the

Read more »


Grocery workers to post informational pickets Wednesday

Attempts to reach a new labor agreement for some 30,000 grocery workers in the Puget Sound area are reaching a confrontational stage.

Workers represented by the United Food and Commercial Workers Local 21, will post informational pickets outside 12 stores Wednesday to draw attention to what they say are attempts by local grocery chains to cut back their pay and benefits.

Those informational pickets will march in front of the stores between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. One Tacoma store, the Fred Meyer at 6901 South 19th Street, has been targeted among the dozen Puget Sound stores.

The union claims

Read more »


Boeing to lay off 266 more workers in the Puget Sound area

Boeing issued layoff warning notices to 266 more workers in the Puget Sound area Thursday bring to more than 1,500 the number of workers it has told they will be losing their jobs this year.

The latest notices were the fourth round this year by the aerospace company. Boeing has said it is trimming its forces here as work on major developmental projects such as the 747-8 and the 787-8 and 787-9 airliners diminishes.

The company has said it will lay off as many as 1,700 engineers and technical workers this year.

The workers receiving notices this week will be

Read more »


Unemployment rates rise in May in Pierce, Thurston and Kitsap counties

A declining unemployment rate in the South Sound over the last several months lured more people to re-enter the job market last month causing unemployment percentages to jump upward in Pierce and Kitsap counties, new figures from the state show.

In Thurston County, the situation was different.  There the workforce declined by 420 workers, but the number of employed declined even faster, 940 fewer jobs, resulting in the higher unemployment rate.

“It’s a phenomenon that we usually see in the spring especially if people perceive that the economy is improving,” said Jim Vleming, regional economist for Washington State Department of

Read more »


Planning meeting to discuss first steps in major developments to North Downtown – including Stadium District

More people, bigger buildings, more pollution, transit, housing, commerce … whew!

If you live in, work in, own property in or care about Tacoma’s North Downtown area, then you might want to attend a public meeting that will discuss the impact of development there over the next few decades.

For planning purposes, North Downtown roughly runs from the Thea Foss Waterway to Yakima Avenue and from South 15th Street up through the Stadium District, to include Wright Park, the St., Helens District and Tacoma’s commercial core.

The meeting is scheduled for 5:30 p.m. on Wednesday, June 26, in the main

Read more »


Horizon Air, flight attendants union reach tentative deal

Sea-Tac-based Horizon Air and the union that represents its nearly 500 flight attendants have reached a tentative deal for a new five-year labor contract.

The agreement comes nearly 18 months after the previous agreement became amendable.  Labor contracts in the airline and rail industries don’t expire, they become “amendable” at the end of their terms.

Flight attendants represented by the Association of Flight Attendants will vote on the proposal in mid-July.  The contract terms weren’t disclosed, but both the airline and the union said the deal includes pay raises, quality of life improvements and more flexible scheduling.

Horizon Air, which

Read more »