BLS Analysis for Recruiters July 2020 – 7 articles

Bob Marshall’s July 2020 BLS Analysis for Recruiters; 8/7/20

The 7 July Articles…

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Executives Expect Greater Use of Contingent Workers Post-Pandemic: The Conference Board

Daily News, July 30, 2020

Business will emerge from Covid-19 with more contract workers and fewer permanent staff, according to a report based on a global survey of CEOs and C-Suite executives by The Conference Board.

“Post-Covid-19, CEOs expect their organizations to emerge leaner and more agile, redefining how work gets done,” said Chuck Mitchell, a report author and director of knowledge, content, and quality at The Conference Board.

CEOs in the survey said using more contract and gig workers along with fewer permanent, in-house workers was the fourth-most important human capital change.  However, other members of the C-Suite surveyed cited it as 10th.

The survey also found that 47% of CEOs globally predict pre-Covid-19 revenue levels will return sometime in 2021.  Looking at just the US, 51% of executives say this will be the case.

Executives also plan to expand the ability for employees to work flexible hours or telecommute permanently.

The survey included more than 1,300 CEOs and other C-Suite executives.

Covid-19 Increases Difficulty for Employers, Frustration for Job Seekers

Daily News, July 29, 2020

Covid-19 appears to have made the struggle by employers to find qualified candidates more difficult as well as increased the frustration faced by job candidates when they don’t hear back from potential employers, according to the “State of Online Recruiting Report” released by jobs website iHire.

“As recently unemployed professionals flood the job market, employers are poised to experience an applicant overload,” iHire President and CEO Steve Flook said.  “Although this will intensify the quest for qualified candidates and attribute to the ‘applicant black hole,’ we are optimistic that organizations will continue to make progress in addressing these challenges.”

The survey found 77.1% of employers are struggling to find qualified talent.  In addition, 39.0% of employers said “receiving unqualified/irrelevant applicants” was their No. 1 challenge when recruiting through a job board.  Also, 38.1% said “finding qualified candidates in my area” was their main concern.

Still, when it comes to hiring, 72.8% of employers said they were actively hiring despite the pandemic.

For job applicants, 18.8% said they were most frustrated by not hearing back from employers after applying or interviewing.  And iHire noted that employers will face more of a challenge getting back to applicants because of “mass applies” from unemployed workers.

The survey also found 21.5% of candidates said they first go to industry-specific platforms when searching for a job, up from 17.1% in a similar survey in 2019.

Included in the survey were 343 employers and 2,841 job seekers across 56 different industries.

Job Board Says Applications Jumped in Q2, Biggest Spike is in Marketing

Daily News, July 27, 2020

Applications for US jobs increased by 11.3% in the second quarter, job board Resume-Library reported today.  It also found that marketing was the industry that saw the biggest spike in people looking for work.

“Millions of Americans have had no choice but to file for unemployment, as businesses continue to suffer at the helm of Covid-19,” said Lee Biggins, founder and CEO of Resume-Library.  “As a result, we’re seeing a big spike in people registering their resumes online and searching and applying for new jobs.”

The company listed the top 10 industries with the largest spikes in job applications during the second quarter:

1.  Marketing, up 127.9%

2.  Finance, up 69.1%

3.  Education, up 53.4%

4.  Sales, up 41.8%

5.  Human resources, up 24.4%

6.  Customer service, up 21.7%

7.  Engineering, up 14.5%

8.  Accounting, up 8.9%

9.  Healthcare, up 3.7%

10. Security, up 3.6%

Among job titles that saw the biggest increases in searches were physician assistant, data analyst and nurse practitioner.

“Our findings offer a snapshot into the job market and the types of roles people are searching for,” Biggins said.  “Unfortunately, it’s been pretty slim pickings in terms of job opportunities, but we are starting to see more vacancies being advertised.”

Covid-19 May Be Reducing Skills Shortage, Hiring Outlook Improves

Daily News, July 27, 2020

Covid-19 may be taking a bite out of the skills shortage, according to the “Business Conditions Survey” released today by the National Association for Business Economics.

The report, which is based on a survey of 104 NABE members, found 16% reported skilled labor shortages compared to 21% who said the same in a similar report released in April.  In addition, those reporting shortages in unskilled labor fell to 3% from 8%.

This month’s report, which looked at overall economic conditions, did find the economic outlook was, overall, more upbeat than April’s report.

“Respondents in this survey report a significant snapback in expectations from the depths reached across nearly all categories in April, suggesting that the economy and business operating environment are no longer on quicksand after the Covid-19 lockdowns in the United States and elsewhere,” said NABE Business Conditions Survey Chair Megan Greene, senior fellow, Harvard Kennedy School.

Respondents’ outlooks for the next 3 months improved for sales, profit margins, prices, employment and capital spending.  Meanwhile, the second quarter was regarded as the worst since the Great Recession for sales, price and capital spending.

The outlook for hiring improved in the new survey, with 22% of respondents anticipating increases in employment at their firms, up from 1% in the April survey.  However, nearly a fifth of respondents indicated their firms reduced wages and salaries in Q2.

“Firms have imposed a number of special measures to limit the negative financial impact of Covid-19 on their firms, including freezing hiring and terminating and furloughing employees,” Greene said.  “1 in 3 firms has resumed normal operations, but nearly as many respondents say they don’t expect their firms to return to normal operations for more than 6 months.”

NABE’s report also found that 80% of firms expect employees working remotely to some degree post crisis.

More Employees Feeling Burnout Due to Working from Home

Daily News, July 17, 2020

Working from home is leading to increased burnout among many employees, according to data from Monster.  It found that 69% of employees are experiencing burnout symptoms while working from home, according to a poll this month of 284 US workers.  That’s up from 51% in May.

In addition, workers are taking less time off.  Monster’s poll found that 59% said they are taking less time away from work than they normally would.  In fact, 42% of workers this month said they are not planning to take time off or vacation time; that compares to 52% who said the same in a similar poll in May.

Still, remote work is drawing attention from job seekers.  Monster, citing separate data from the week of July 6 to July 12, said the word “remote” saw its highest search levels in the past 14 weeks.  It’s now in the top 10 locations searched on Monster.  “The spike indicates that work from home is settling in as the new normal for job search and employment,” according to the company.

Looking ahead at returning to work, a separate poll by the American Staffing Association found that 79% of US employees are satisfied with their employer’s pandemic-related return-to-work plans.

Baby boomers were the most satisfied at 85% while millennials were nearly as satisfied at 82%.  The least satisfied were members of Gen Z at 62%.

IT Jobs Down 211,400 Over Year, But Segment Still Better than Overall Workforce

Daily News, July 16, 2020

There were 211,400 fewer IT workers in June compared to the same month last year, the TechServe Alliance reported on Wednesday.

IT employment totaled 5,100,000 jobs in June, down 1.46% month over month and down by 3.95% year over year, according to the TechServe Alliance’s calculations.

But there was some good news.

“Unlike a lot of sectors that shed a vast number of employees quickly, the job loss in IT has evolved more slowly,” TechServe Alliance CEO Mark Roberts said.  “Despite the drop, IT continues to fare significantly better than the overall workforce with a year-over-year decline less than half total nonfarm employment.”

On the other hand, the organization noted that engineering employment rose by 1.73% month over month to nearly 2,600,000.  The increase follows a sharp drop of 6.5% in April and modest increase of just 0.52% in May.

Still, the number of engineering jobs was down 98,600 year over year in June.

Remote Work Key Benefit for Technologists; 53% say it’s More Productive: DICE

Daily News, July 13, 2020

Employers offering long-term flex, remote work will outpace competition, according to a report by tech jobs website Dice.

For years, technologists wanted to work remotely, and some sought out employers that specifically offered this benefit.

Prior to the Covid-19 pandemic, most employers did not offer formal remote and flex work policies to their employees; while some employers worried it would have an impact on productivity, others believed it would be a detriment to organizational culture, according to the report.

But Covid-19 forced most employers to mandate remote work indefinitely.  Whether businesses had formalized policies, resources and infrastructure, they needed to act quickly to equip their teams with the right tools and information – and hope that productivity wouldn’t drop.  What most businesses found, instead, was that productivity maintained, according to the report.  At the same time, many businesses that collected employee sentiments found that their workers were largely content working out of the office.

“Given technologists’ desire for flexible and remote work options and the proven success of at-home work over many months, technologists will increasingly seek out employers that offer this type of work/life balance moving forward,” said Art Zeile, CEO of DHI Group Inc., parent company of Dice.  “This is an excellent opportunity for employers to tap into pools of remote workers across the US to increase talent pipelines and diversify workforces as part of the nationwide shift toward remote work.”

Technologists noted more productivity as one of the main professional benefits of working remotely.  When asked, “What the main professional benefits you receive from working remotely vs. working in an office?” their responses included:

In addition to the professional benefits of flex and remote work, technologists’ personal benefits of working remotely included commuting-related benefits at the top of the list with 80% of technologists selecting “saving money on commuting” and 67% selecting “an easier commute.”  Technologists have also found benefit in more comfortable attire and more control of the environment at 67% and 54% respectively.