The Georgia Department of Labor announced Thursday that the unemployment rate in Southwest Georgia has risen to 9.4% in January, whereas in December it was 9.1%. GDOL also announced that the unemployment rate in metro Albany also rose to 9.7% in January from 9.4% in December.FOX 31 spoke to locals at the Albany branch of GDOL and many of them said they have been out of a job for months now, and they aren TMt sure why it TMs been so hard to find a job.Wes Smith, the assistant city manager, is one local official who has done a lot of hiring throughout his career. Smith says they receive around 100 applications for each job posting and after going through them there are only a handful of people that actually get the interview. He says when applying for jobs people need to make sure that they have the skills that are necessary for the job.Smith says another big thing is making sure you have a clean background. He says employers in the area, including himself, are looking for people that can be trusted, and have potential; so even if you don TMt have the skills needed, if you TMre a person that is a quick learner, and willing to learn, you might still get your foot in the door.Stay connected to MySouthWestGA.com as stories develop and the FOX 31 Newscast at 10 PM. Visit us on Facebook and Twitter to join in on the conversation and connect with FOX 31!