More positions than ever are available in the technology sector, and local job seekers saw firsthand Thursday evidence of that trend during a career fair and symposium event at Network Hardware Resale’s global headquarters in Goleta.

The world-leading provider of pre-owned and new networking and datacenter solutions welcomed more than 100 locals into its free, three-hour afternoon event at 6500 Hollister Ave.

Many professionally dressed job seekers toted résumés from table to table, energized by the fact that Network Hardware Resale had 20 immediate positions to fill.

Attendees were further buoyed by a promise from company CEO Mike Sheldon, who during an accompanying technology symposium announced future plans to hire more entry and senior level employees in sales, administration, engineering, client services, accounting and more.

Sheldon’s revelation reflected the information presented during the tech talk, led by Mark Schniepp, director of the California Economic Forecast.

“I’m here to tell you a story today,” Schniepp told a crowd gathered in one of two packed rooms. “It’s a long story.”

The story was one of jobs, discontent and the actual state of the economy, he said, since the country’s economy is, in fact, the best it’s been since the recession began in 2008.

“All the indicators are positive,” Schniepp added.

Network Hardware

Network Hardware Resale CEO Mike Sheldon, left, and economist Mark Schniepp answer questions from potential job applicants during Thursday’s technology symposium and career fair. (Gina Potthoff / Noozhawk photo)

He said that although California’s unemployment rate appears high, the data doesn’t account for some factors, like the fact that those ages 16 to 19 have the highest unemployment rate. The reason for that, Schniepp explained, was because the entry-level jobs youths would typically take were being lost in many cases to advances in technology.

Construction, manufacturing and retail were not hiring — robots were being designed to do more — but jobs in technology, biotechnology, engineering and health care were booming.

Schniepp noted the thriving technology sector of the Central Coast and Santa Barbara, specifically.

With 265 local employees, Network Hardware Resale made Schniepp’s list of largest local tech companies

The privately held company, which was founded in 1986, employs more than 450 worldwide, and was especially looking to hire folks who understand technology and can then teach its importance and practical use to those who are less tech-savvy, according to Sheldon.

“That’s the hardest mix to find,” Sheldon said during a short question-and-answer session with attendees.

He was optimistic about Network Hardware Resale’s future, similar to Schniepp’s confidence in the tech industry and economy as a whole.

Noozhawk staff writer Gina Potthoff can be reached at Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.