BLS Analysis for January 2019 – 10 Featured Articles

Bob Marshall’s January 2019 BLS Analysis for Recruiters; 2/1/19


The 10 January Articles…


Start here…



Wages Rise at Annual Rate of 3.4%, Job-Switching Slows: ADP

Daily News, January 24, 2019


Wages for US workers increased at an annual rate 3.4% in December, raising the average wage level by 93¢ to $28.06 an hour, according to the fourth-quarter ADP Workforce Vitality Report, released Wednesday.  Wages rose last December at an annual rate of 3.1%.


Among industries, information continued to lead the way for both wage level and wage growth with a wage level of $42.60 and wage growth of 5.1%.  The information industry category includes Internet firms, software companies, publishers and broadcasters.


The report also found 20.5% of US employees successfully switched firms in the last year, highlighting an overall slowdown in job switching.  In the same time period last year, 21.2% switch firms.


“As the labor market sits at full employment, we continue to see an overall slowdown in job switching across the majority of industries,” said Ahu Yildirmaz, co-head of the ADP Research Institute.  “One industry defying the market trend is finance, which has experienced a steady uptick in job switching.  This acceleration is driven primarily by younger workers.”


Wage growth for all job switchers gradually accelerated during this same time period, currently at 5.4%.


Job switching in the finance industry is accelerating, with more than 18.6% of workers in the industry switching firms in the last year; wage growth for job switchers in finance is also picking up, currently at 6.3%.


Year-over-year wage growth for full-time job holders and job switchers in December 2018:


*All: Holders 4.7%; switchers 5.4%

*Construction: Holders 5.0%; switchers 9.0%

*Manufacturing: Holders 4.7%; switchers 5.7%

*Resources and mining: Holders 4.7%; switchers 1.7%

*Information: Holders 5.6%; switchers 10.6%

*Finance and real estate: Holders 4.7%; switchers 6.3%

*Professional and business services: Holders 4.0%; switchers 8.2%

*Education and health services: Holders 4.4%; switchers 3.5%

*Leisure and hospitality: Holders 5.4%; switchers -1.7%

*Trade, transportation and utilities: Holders 5.3%; switchers 3.8%


The ADP Workforce Vitality Report used payroll data derived from a sample of approximately 250,000 companies and 18,000,000 employees each month, which accounts for about 15% of all US private-sector employees.



Top-Paid IT Role Commands Salary of $175,000 to $300,000

Daily News, January 23, 2019


Chief information officers and chief technical officers top this year’s list of highest-paid technology professionals, according to the annual technology salary guide released by Mondo, an IT and digital marketing staffing provider headquartered in New York.


CIO and CTO salaries range from $175,000 to $300,000 this year, according to the report.  Chief information security officer ranked second, with salaries ranging from $175,000 to $275,000.


Artificial Intelligence and machine learning skills are in high demand, with AI developer and machine learning engineer salaries now reaching $200,000.


Technology jobs with the highest salaries of $200,000 or more in 2019 include:


*CTO/CIO: $175,000 to $300,000

*Chief information security officer: $175,000 to $275,000

*Demandware developer: $127,500 to $237,500

*Solutions architect: $155,000 to $220,000

*IoT solutions architect: $140,000 to $210,000

*Data architect: $145,000 to $210,000

*Salesforce solution architect: $145,500 to $210,500

*Database architect: $145,000 to $200,000

*Project manager; $75,000 to $200,000

*AI developer: $120,000 to $200,000

*Machine learning engineer: $120,500 to $200,000


“Cybersecurity and IT security skills continue to net some of the highest salaries within technology departments,” Mondo CEO Tim Johnson said.  “Salaries are expected to keep climbing as the talent gap widens, resulting in a projected shortfall of 3,500,000 security-related roles by 2021.  We are also seeing some tech salaries that remain flat for less competitive, yet necessary skill sets, like QA and network support.”


The technology salary data are based on Mondo’s placements over the past year in New York City, San Francisco, Washington DC, Philadelphia, Denver, Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, Atlanta and Dallas.



(abridged from…) The Skills Companies Need Most in 2019

LinkedIn, Paul Petrone, January 1, 2019)


The Soft Skills Companies Need Most in 2019


Strengthening a soft skill is one of the best investments you can make in your career, as they never go out of style.  Plus, the rise of AI is only making soft skills increasingly important, as they are precisely the type of skills robots can’t automate.


That’s why 57% of senior leaders today say soft skills are more important than hard skills.

What are the soft skills companies are looking for most in 2019? They are:


  1. Creativity

While robots are great at optimizing old ideas, organizations most need creative employees who can conceive the solutions of tomorrow.


  1. Persuasion

Having a great product, a great platform or a great concept is one thing, but the key is persuading people to buy into it.


  1. Collaboration

As projects grow increasingly more complex and global in the age of AI, effective collaboration only grows more important.


  1. Adaptability

An adaptable mind is an essential tool for navigating today’s ever-changing world, as yesterday’s solutions won’t solve tomorrow’s problems.


  1. Time Management

A timeless skill, mastering time management today will serve you the rest of your career.


The Hard Skills Companies Need Most in 2019


The skills on this list reflect the impact of our increasingly digital world. Yes, that means a spike in cloud computing and AI, but it also means a spike in improving that digital experience (i.e. UX Design, web development, etc.).


Digital is also giving new uses for skills – for example, there’s increased demand for audio production. This was a skill formerly needed for radio production; today, it’s used for producing podcasts and digital ads.


Here are the hard skills companies need most in 2019, according to LinkedIn data:


  1. Cloud Computing

As the world rushes toward the cloud, companies are desperately searching for engineers who have the skills to accommodate this demand.

  1. Artificial Intelligence

Its official — the Age of AI is here.


  1. Analytical Reasoning

As they collect more data than ever before, companies are hungry for professionals who can make smart decisions based off of it.


  1. People Management

The world has changed from a “command-and-control” model toward leaders who can coach and empower, a difficult skillset few professionals possess.


  1. UX Design

UX design is the key to making a digital world work for humans.


  1. Mobile Application Development

A skill that’s been in-demand for several years as companies continue to design mobile-first platforms.


  1. Video Production

Demand for video production is spiking as video streaming represents 70 percent of all consumer Internet traffic.


  1. Sales Leadership

Sales is one of those skills that’s always in-demand, and great sales leaders are only becoming harder and harder to find.


  1. Translation

We are more connected globally than ever before, with translation skills breaking down one of the last remaining barriers: language.


  1. Audio Production

Similar to video, there’s been a spike in interest in podcasts and other audio digital formats recently, leading to increased demand for this skill.


  1. Natural Language Processing

The technology behind Alexa and Google Home, everything from our cars to our light bulbs are now becoming voice-activated.


  1. Scientific Computing

Scientific computing is generally used to solve problems with massive amounts of data to consider – a need as companies continue to collect more and more data.


  1. Game Development

In yet another sign of providing a better experience for digital users, the demand for those who can develop compelling online games remains strong.


  1. Social Media Marketing

Social media continues to be a popular way to communicate with others digitally, as new platforms disrupt the market.


  1. Animation

No surprise to see animation on the list, considering the surge of video traffic and the increasing prevalence of the GIF.


  1. Business Analysis

Similar to data-driven decision making, more and more companies are relying on analysts to help them guide strategic investments.


  1. Journalism

Once a dwindling skill, journalism isn’t just for journalists anymore as marketing and content teams alike vie for people who can tell compelling stories.


  1. Digital Marketing

With the rise of digital, it’s no surprise to see digital marketing as the most in-demand marketing skill on the list.


  1. Industrial Design

The demand for those who can design something that is both practical and eloquent will never go away.


  1. Competitive Strategies

Virtually all companies are facing increased competition, with organizations starved for people who can help them stay abreast and ahead of their competitors.


  1. Customer Service Systems

In a world where one bad experience can lead to a tweet the whole world sees, consistent customer service is increasingly paramount.


  1. Software Testing

New software’s are hitting the market at record-numbers – requiring more and more people who can ensure they actually work.


  1. Data Science

An in-demand skill for the past several years, there is still a strong need for those who can make sense of a magnitude of data.


  1. Computer Graphics

As a sizeable part of our digital world goes from 2D to 3D, companies are looking for people who can foster that transition.


  1. Corporate Communications

With social media, local mistakes can lead to global outrages, requiring people who can manage difficult situations.



Methodology: “The skills companies need most” was determined by looking at skills that are in high demand relative to their supply. Demand is measured by identifying the skills listed on the LinkedIn profiles of people who are getting hired at the highest rates. Only cities with 100,000 LinkedIn members were included.



Automation Prompts 87% of Firms to Increase or Maintain Headcount: ManpowerGroup

Daily News, January 18. 2019


A majority of employers globally, 87%, plan to increase or maintain headcount as a result of automation, according to ManpowerGroup’s new report, “Humans Wanted: Robots Need You.”  The report is based on a survey of 19,000 employers in 44 countries about the impact of automation on job growth in the next 2 years.


Rather than reducing employment opportunities, organizations that are automating create the most jobs, the report found.  Of the 41% of companies that will automate tasks over the next 2 years, 24% will create more jobs, 6% more than those that don’t plan to automate.


The report also found strong demand for IT skills; 16% of companies expect to increase headcount in IT, 5 times more than those expecting a decrease.  Production and manufacturing employers anticipate the most change in headcount, with 25% reporting they will employ more people in the next year, while 20% say they will employ fewer.  Growth will come in front line and as well as customer-facing roles — all requiring human skills such as communication, negotiation, leadership and adaptability.


“The focus on robots eliminating jobs is distracting us from the real issue,” ManpowerGroup Chairman and CEO Jonas Prising said.  “More and more robots are being added to the workforce, but humans are too.  Tech is here to stay and it’s our responsibility as leaders to become chief learning officers and work out how we integrate humans with machines.”


Prising said ManpowerGroup is reskilling people from declining industries like textiles for jobs in high-growth industries including cybersecurity, advanced manufacturing and autonomous driving.


“If we focus on practical steps to upskill people at speed and at scale, organizations and individuals really can befriend the machines,” he said.



High-Performing Organizations’ Approach to Talent Acquisition: Allegis

Daily News, January 17, 2019


A minority of organizations are achieving strong business impact through an engaged workforce committed to delivering positive outcomes, according to the “Stepping Up: Workforce Practices That Raise the Bar on Business Performance” report released today by Allegis Group.


Building relationships through great candidate and employee experiences is essential to developing an engaged workforce, yet only 31% of employers report they are very satisfied with their recruitment process.  A lack of prioritization of the candidate experience creates several issues for employers, including an inability to find great talent, cited by 74% of respondents, an inability to achieve business objectives at 65%, a poor employer reputation online at 57% and greater recruiting costs at 53%.


Allegis Group found that successful organizations consistently apply a relationship-focused approach to 4 fundamental phases of talent acquisition: job definition, sourcing, screening and onboarding.


High-performing organizations optimize job definitions and create descriptions that set the stage for positive employee relationships.


*72% of high-performing talent organizations always provide accurate, up-to-date job definitions, versus just 20% of all other respondents.  And 65% always align job descriptions with an onboarding 30-, 60-, 90-day plan versus 16% of all others.


*The report also found high-performing talent organizations are more than 3 times more likely (69% versus 23%) to always clarify must-have and nice-to-have skills and requirements in their job descriptions.


Align sourcing strategies to connect with talent on their terms.


*Train and promote within: 78% of employers and 83% of workers believe human resource teams need to make internal job openings more visible to all employees.  Further, 81% of employers and 83% of workers agree management should do a better job of encouraging employees to apply.


*Embrace digital acquisition tools: High-performing talent organizations are nearly 3 times more likely (64% versus 22%) to always ensure prompt responses to submitted applications.  Innovations in digital recruiting technology, such as boosting data intelligence and automating many high-volume, low-value activities, help employers improve responsiveness, and high-performing organizations are three times more likely (55% versus 18%) to employ such methods.


*Personalized communications: High-performing talent organizations are more than twice as likely as others (55% versus 21%) to always provide personalized responses to applications.


Establish screening processes that boost the candidate experience.


*Eliminate bias: High-performing talent organizations are more than twice as likely as others (89% versus 42%) to always take steps to eliminate unconscious bias during screening.


*Facilitate 2-way communication: A candidate should be given a chance to respond to any concerns about their qualifications; however, only 25% of surveyed employers always share their concerns with candidates, with high performers being much more likely to do so (67% versus 23%).


Treat onboarding as the foundation of a great employee relationship.


*Be ready on day 1: High-performing talent organizations are more than twice as likely (72% versus 33%) to always engage new hires in a community of peers and helpers during the onboarding process, are always prepared for the new hire’s first day (77% versus 35%) and always set clear expectations in the onboarding process (75% versus 32%).


“The results of these findings confirm what we have long known as a leader in talent solutions: a great employer-employee relationship begins with great relationship-based talent acquisition best practices,” Allegis Group President Andy Hilger said.  “In order to attract top talent, employers need to establish trust on all fronts by better understanding and prioritizing the employee relationship.”


The report is based on a survey of more than 1,000 employers and nearly 7,000 candidates and employees worldwide.



Fewer Tech, Engineering Leaders to Increase Headcount; Salary No Longer top Concern:  Modis

Daily News, January 17, 2019


Decision-makers report opportunities for advancement, company impact and out-of-the box benefits have increased in importance to workers, beating out competitive salary as a top concern, according to according to the Technology and Engineering Workplace Trends survey by Modis, an IT and engineering staffing and solutions division of The Adecco Group, and General Assembly, an Adecco-owned training firm focused on IT skills.


The survey found 67% decision-makers plan to increase headcount in 2019, down from 79% in 2018.  And when it comes to hiring candidates with the appropriate technical skill sets, 41% of decision-makers within technology and engineering fields indicated it’s becoming more difficult to find the top talent they need.


The research surveyed 1,006 decision-makers in technology and engineering on issues pertaining to recruitment and benefits, employer challenges and other workplace trends.


When assessing candidates for open roles, respondents reported that, on average, 43% of candidates lack the technical skills required for the role.  Additionally, soft skills continue to be a concern for hiring managers when looking for the competencies that ensure workers are ready to succeed in the technology and engineering workforce; 23% of respondents said communication is the most difficult soft skill to find in candidates.


In last year’s survey, 55% of decision makers agreed with the statement “workers expect a salary that aligns with the market average for their role,” compared to 63% in 2019, indicating the importance of salary has not changed, but that many employers understand the need for competitive pay in order to secure these specialized workers.


Career advancement opportunities and out-of-the-box benefits have increased in importance, according to respondents.  When asked to rank the most important benefits for attracting and retaining talent, the opportunity to advance narrowly beat out competitive salary and raises.  The ability to innovate and create new products, projects or ideas ranked third.  When examining the responses by generation, millennial and Gen Z decision-makers collectively ranked the ability to create change within a company second. Unlike their millennial counterparts, Gen Z respondents chose the opportunity to work on a world-changing product as the third-most important benefit, leaving salary and raises in fourth place.  Boomers were the only group to rank salary and raises above career advancement.


More than half of decision-makers, 56%, agreed that workers in their field are more concerned about out-of-the-box benefits than salary.  When asked about what benefits were most appealing to their employees or potential employees, 39% chose flex-hours, while just 6% picked tuition reimbursement.  Flex-hours were the most commonly selected out-of-the-box benefit in both technology and engineering fields, and across generational lines.


When asked which of the following aspects of diversity their field struggles with the most, 43% of decision-makers surveyed cited age and more than a quarter of respondents, 29%, chose gender.  These results suggest that additional advocacy and awareness-building are needed to close diversity gaps in these fields, especially as industry data points to a lack of women and people of color in technology and engineering positions, according to the research.



62% of Workers Would Relocate for a Job, Better Pay Top Factor: Robert Half

Daily News, January 15, 2019


Offering relocation benefits to job candidates could be a good move for employers, according to research released today by Robert Half International Inc.  The survey found 62% of workers said they would consider moving for a position.


Respondents cited the following as the top factor in a decision to relocate:


*Better pay/perks: 44%

*Family/personal reasons: 17%

*Cost of living: 16%

*Career advancement: 16%

*Weather: 6%%


Among professionals in the 28 US cities polled, respondents in Raleigh, NC; Des Moines, Iowa; Miami; and Charlotte, NC, are most open to changing locations.


“In today’s competitive hiring environment, many employers are finding it challenging to locate skilled professionals in their immediate area,” said Paul McDonald, senior executive director for Robert Half.  “As a result, organizations are open to considering candidates in other cities and offering attractive relocation packages to secure that talent.”


Miami had the most companies that have increased their relocation packages over the past 5 years at 53%, followed by Houston, Los Angeles and Dallas at 48%, 45% and 42%, respectively.


The online surveys were developed by Robert Half and conducted by independent research firms.  They include responses from more than 2,800 adult US workers employed in office environments and more than 2,800 senior managers at companies with 20 or more employees in 28 major US cities.



Employee Experience Critical in 2019: The Execu|Search Group

Daily News, January 14, 2019


The employee experience will be critical to business success in 2019, according to a hiring outlook report released by The Execu|Search Group, a recruitment, temporary staffing and workforce management solutions firm.


It found 62% of employers plan to hire new staff in 2019.  It also found 66% of professionals are not planning to stay at their organizations long-term; and despite not actively looking, 95% of professionals are open to new job opportunities.


The report also asked what elements of a company’s culture are most important, and professionals rated the following:


  1. Support from leadership and management
  2. Professional development opportunities
  3. Strong team rapport
  4. Flexible scheduling


According to the report, 86% of professionals surveyed said they would change jobs if they were offered more opportunities for professional development, and 66% of professionals reported there isn’t much support at their firms for those wishing to take on leadership roles.


Respondents also reported employers fall short when it comes to work-life balance:  45% of employees do not feel their employer promotes a healthy work-life balance, and 71% of professionals said they would change jobs if they were offered flexible scheduling in a new role.


“With professionals in the driver’s seat, they’re commanding more than just higher salaries,” said The Execu|Search Group CEO Edward Fleischman.  “Professionals consider their careers an integral part of their lives and they expect their job to provide meaning.”


The survey was conducted form the end of October to the first week of December.  It included just more than 600 hiring decision makers, job seekers, and working professionals.



Three-Quarters of Companies to Add Headcount Skilled Talent Remains Top Challenge:  LaSalle Network

Daily News, January 11, 2019


Nearly three-quarters of companies plan to add to their workforce in 2019, according to the “2019 Hiring Challenges” report released by LaSalle Network, a Chicago-based staffing provider.


The survey of more than 4,000 executives in human resources and finance found 74% of respondents plan to add headcount in 2019, up from 65% in 2018.  Further, 61% of respondents plan to raise wages in 2019, up from 48% in 2018.


Finding skilled candidates remains the top hiring challenge for 2019, cited by 65% of respondents.


The second-biggest hiring challenge for employers is meeting compensation requirements, according to the research.  61% of respondents stated they plan to raise wages in 2019, and 1 out of 4 plan to add benefits in 2019.


Respondents ranked identifying diverse candidates as the third-biggest hiring challenge for 2019; it was cited by 45% of survey participants, up from 27% last year and 18% in the survey for 2017.



Job Openings Fall in November, But Still Exceed Unemployed

Daily News, January 8, 2019


The number of US job openings fell in November from October, according to data released today by the US Bureau of Labor Statistics.  The number of hires and separations also declined.


There were 6,900,000 job openings in November, down 3.4% from October; however, openings increased 16.1% on a year-over-year basis.


Job openings in November decreased in a number of industries, led by decreases of 66,000 in “other services” and 45,000 in construction.  On the flip side, the number of job openings increased by 40,000 in transportation, warehousing and utilities.


Job openings fell in the West region.


The job openings rate — a measure of job openings compared with total employment — was 4.4%, up from 3.9% in November 2017.


MarketWatch reported the number of job openings in the US fell in November to the lowest level since early summer, but companies say one of their biggest hurdles is a lack of qualified applicants and not an unwillingness to hire.  Openings still easily exceed the 6,000,000 people classified by the government as unemployed.