The U.S. Census Bureau needs your help as they gear up for next year’s attempt to count each and every person in the country. How much do they need you?
Well, the government agency announced Dec. 1 an increase in pay rates across the nation. For Converse County, that means a rise to between $17 and $18.50 an hour, according to Census Bureau Media Specialist Jennifer Hillmann, who noted Wyoming as a whole can see hourly wages up as high as $21.50 an hour.
This will be the first time ever the census will be offered online in addition to traditional methods over the phone and through the mail. Even with the census being more convenient to participate in with the online method, there still is a need to hire individuals to count those who didn’t fill out the initial questionnaire.
“We’re hoping we get a really high self-response rate because of the fact that it will be available online this year, but if we don’t, we will obviously need more enumerators,” she said.
Paid positions needing to be filled includes census takers (enumerators), field supervisors and recruiting assistants.
“There are several different jobs that are available,” Hillman said. “The office positions we’ve been hiring for are only in Casper and Natrona County, but we need enumerators everywhere and we’re also going to need some field supervisors.”
While the Cowboy State’s lone area census office is in Casper, there are plenty of jobs for those residing in Converse County. Hillmann says they still need 75 applicants to fill their recruiting goal of 150, which takes folks dropping out or not pursuing the job.
“We’re sitting at about half the folks we need,” she said of hiring in Converse County.
When hiring, she noted the importance of having people with knowledge of the surrounding area staffed, as it makes enumeration go much smoother.
“We are hiring locals specifically because we know local people know their communities best,” Hillmann said. “So, folks that are hired in Douglas, ideally, we would want them to work in Douglas or Converse County.”
The selection process for hiring is expected to take place in January, with paid training following in March and April.
“We need people to be applying now,” Hillmann said. “We’re getting close to January and we need to get people hired.”
With unemployment in the neighborhood of 2.8 percent in the county, it may prove difficult in reaching the desired quota of applicants. The good news, Hillman explained, is the flexibility of census jobs. She said even those with full time jobs can pick up a few extra hours.
“If you already have a job, or maybe if you’re a student or you’ve got a part time job, these jobs won’t be until next year, but it’s very flexible, so you can create the schedule you need,” she said.
To submit an application for employment, visit 2020census.gov/jobs, which breaks the positions down by county with pay and job responsibilities.
“It’s very quick and easy to look at,” Hillman said. “We try to make it as simple as possible.”