I can’t tell: Is this actually good news, or simply wishful thinking?
CareerBuilder’s Midyear Job Forecast says that nearly half of U.S. employers “plan to add full-time, permanent employees over the next six months, and one-third plan to hire temporary or contract workers – both improvements over the same period in 2013.”
The key word there is “plan,” because employers saying they “plan” to hire isn’t the same thing as saying they “will” be adding additional staff.
A more assured employer population?
I know, I know; nothing is guaranteed in this life, and that’s doubly true for business executives adding additional jobs (and costs) given the tenuous nature of our economic recovery. I’m sure some feel that a “plan” to hire is about as definitive as it gets, and maybe that’s the case here.
But still I wonder — why is it I don’t feel more encouraged by this kind of news?
For what it’s worth, CareerBuilder is bullish on this one, and that’s not surprising either given that it’s their research.
“The results of this year’s survey are indicative of a more assured employer population compared to 2013 when companies were, to some extent, irresolute when it came to adding permanent staff,” said Matt Ferguson, CEO of CareerBuilder, in a press release about the Midyear Job Forecast.
He added: “Back then, employers anticipated a spike in temporary employment in the second half of the year while permanent employment was to remain flat. The 2014 midyear forecast shows employers are expecting forward movement in all categories of hiring. Jobs will also be added in a variety of areas, heavily favoring job seekers with expertise in technology, financial operations, communications and other specialized fields.”
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31% of employers plan to hire in Q3
I hope Matt Ferguson is right, because some solid employment growth beyond the low-paying jobs that have dominated the monthly Labor Department statistics would be a welcome change that would surely do some good.
Here are a few more details from CareerBuilder’s Midyear Job Forecast:
- 47 percent of employers plan to hire full-time, permanent employees, up from 44 percent last year.
- 27 percent plan to hire part-time employees, up from 25 percent last year.
- Information Technology is the sector that plans to hire the most with 59 percent saying they plan to hire full-time, permanent employees, up from 51 percent last year. They are followed by Financial Services (57 percent this year, up from 52 percent last year), Hospitality (55 percent, up from 46 percent last year), Health Care (54 percent, up from 51 percent last year), and Manufacturing (54 percent, up from 51 percent in 2013).
- 36 percent of employers added full-time, permanent headcount in the second quarter of 2014, up from 34 percent last year. Some 10 percent decreased headcount while 53 percent made no change to staff level,s and 1 percent were unsure.
- Looking ahead, 31 percent of employers plan to hire full-time, permanent employees in the third quarter, up slightly from 30 percent last year. Some 9 percent expect to downsize staffs while 56 percent anticipate no changes to headcount and 5 percent are undecided.
CareerBuilder’s Midyear Job Forecast survey was conducted online within the U.S. by Harris Poll on behalf of CareerBuilder among 2,188 hiring managers and HR professionals ages 18 and over (employed full-time, not self-employed, non-government) between May 13 and June 6, 2014 (percentages for some questions are based on a subset, based on their responses to certain questions). With a pure probability sample of 2,188, one could say with a 95 percent probability that the overall results have a sampling error of +/- 2.10 percentage points.
Yes, these numbers are encouraging, but I keep coming back to the same thought — this sounds like good news, but given the mediocre economic recovery since the Great Recession, it may not be.
We’ll just have to wait and see.