We may still hear of layoffs and employers taking forever to make hiring decisions. But, could there be a minuscule glimmer of hope on the job market front?

Yes, applications for first-time unemployment benefits went up nationally by 25,000 to 584,000 for the week ending July 25. But some economists told The Associated Press they see good news in that report from the U.S. Labor Department, as most of those new claims are part of the auto companies shutting plants temporarily in May or June -- earlier than usual. And the four-week average of claims fell to 559,000, the lowest since January.

Tom Wieder, an executive recruiter for banking, said he's seen some big players start to replace key people and "organizations that were in complete lockdown mode” move from "a hiring freeze to a hiring frost.” Certainly, layoffs continue, but "people don't necessarily understand that hiring is going in through the other door,” said Wieder, managing partner for the financial services group of WorldBridge Partners in Baldwin.

In good times and bad, most hiring is not about industry growth, but replacement and turnover, said Gary Huth, principal economist on Long Island with the state Department of Labor. Yes, that turnover contracts during a recession, he said, but to say there are no jobs, "That's not an accurate look at the job market.”


Here's a sample of employers with local openings:


Netflix
Melville distribution center
netflix.com/jobs

OPENINGS: Driver, $13 an hour; operations supervisor, $19.50 an hour

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QUALITIES SOUGHT: With an average 80,000 DVDs received and another 80,000 shipped daily from this facility, the company strives "to find people with excruciating attention to detail,” people who can work "fast, but precisely,” said Steve Swasey, vice president of corporate communications. That and start work real early. "Money is made and service is good when people get up early,” he said.

Verizon Wireless
VerizonWireless.com/careers

OPENINGS: Twenty sales rep positions at stand-alone stores and for BJ's Wholesale Club and P.C. Richard & Son locations.

COMPENSATION: Base pay and commission; on average, sales reps bring in $40,000 a year, said Eileen Lambert, associate director of human resources in the metropolitan area.

QUALITIES SOUGHT: It's best if you have a year or so of sales or customer service experience, or if you're naturally persuasive, said Lambert.


Somerset Mortgage Lenders
Melville
somersetmortgagelenders.com

OPENINGS: Forty to fifty positions ranging from team leader and loan officer to underwriter and processor.

COMPENSATION: Depending on the position, compensation can range from $30,000 to $300,000 a year, said Robert Haufler, director of marketing.

QUALITIES SOUGHT: Be proactive -- find out who you will be meeting with during the interview, arrive early, greet the person with Ms. or Mr. "That's the person I want. The one who cares,” said Haufler.
Haufler says to send a resume and follow up with a call to the recruiting department.


Paradigm Group
Syosset
paradigm-grp.com

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OPENINGS: The maker and supplier of eco-friendly disposable products, such as plates, facial tissue, garbage liners is looking for industrial sales reps (experienced or entry-level) and inside sales reps (four to five years' customer service experience)

COMPENSATION: Base plus commission

QUALITIES SOUGHT: You don't need a degree in an environmental area, but should demonstrate that you're "interested in and understand [the green] movement and understand what's going on in marketplace,” said Ralph Bianculli Jr., business development and e-commerce director.