Job Market Forecast for Second Half of 2010


Job market will “stay the course” in second half of 2010, according to CareerBuilder and USA Today

Hiring in the second half of 2010 is likely to mirror the first half, according to CareerBuilder and USA TODAY’s latest nationwide survey of employers. Forty-one percent of hiring managers plan to hire in the months of July through December. One-in-five plan to hire full-time, permanent employees in the third quarter, similar to the previous two quarters. The survey was conducted by Harris Interactive© from May 18 to June 3, 2010. More than 2,500 hiring managers and human resource professionals and 4,400 workers across industries participated.

“Employers began recruiting at a moderate, but consistent pace in the first half of 2010 as confidence levels inched upward amidst a better global financial picture,” said Matt Ferguson, CEO of CareerBuilder. “The economic recovery has broadened, but employers remain guarded. The survey indicates that we’ll see sustainable new job growth through the remainder of the year, but it will be absent of any dramatic shifts.”

Employers are primarily focused on preserving clientele and fueling new revenue opportunities, and are recruiting for the following functional areas first:

  • Customer Service (25 percent of hiring managers)
  • Sales (22 percent)
  • IT (18 percent)
  • Administrative (13 percent)
  • Business Development (10 percent)
  • Accounting/Finance (10 percent)

Three Trends for the Second Half of 2010

1.Emerging Jobs – Employers are also looking for personnel to fill emerging positions that are relatively new to the workforce. Twenty-four percent reported they are recruiting for jobs focused on areas such as social media, green energy, cyber security, global relations and healthcare reform.

2.Changing Jobs – Employers are implementing measures to retain top performers. Looking at a subset of Human Resource managers, 56 percent fear that their top talent will leave their organizations as the U.S. produces more jobs. Their concern is substantiated with 29 percent of workers planning to change jobs once the economy improves.

3.Shortage of Skilled Labor– One-in-five employers (22 percent) reported that, despite an abundant labor pool, they still have positions for which they can’t find qualified candidates. Nearly half (48 percent) of HR managers reported there is a shortage of skills within their organizations with IT, Customer Service and Communications being the areas with the greatest deficit. Among industries, healthcare employers were the most likely to report a skills deficit with 63 percent of HR professionals in large healthcare organizations stating they have a shortage of qualified workers.

Hiring in Q2 2010
The amount of employers who added full-time, permanent headcount in the second quarter was slightly ahead of what was originally forecasted in the survey, continuing a trend of actual hiring beating projected hiring. Twenty-four percent of employers reported they increased their full-time, permanent staff in the second quarter. This is up from 18 percent year over year and up 1 percent from last quarter. Eleven percent decreased headcount, an improvement from 17 percent last year and 12 percent last quarter. Sixty-four percent reported no change in their number of full-time, permanent employees while one percent were undecided.

Hiring in Q3 2010
Twenty-one percent of employers plan to augment their full-time permanent headcount in the third quarter while 8 percent expect to downsize staffs. Sixty-five percent anticipate no change while 6 percent are undecided. Looking at actual hiring for the third quarter in 2009, 18 percent of employers reported they had hired full-time, permanent staff while 15 percent decreased headcount.

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