CURRENT LABOR INDICATORS
Total Unemployment: 8.3%
College Educated Unemployment: 4.2%
Total Job Loss/Gain: +227,000
Temp Penetration Rate: 1.86%
Dave Dunkel, Kforce Chairman and CEO, and I just returned from a trip where we visited Kforce associates and clients in Phoenix, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Seattle and Denver. In meeting with our valued clients, we found that most now clearly understand that we are in a candidate constrained environment. As the war for talent heats up, employers now realize it is important to align their pricing and hiring processes with Kforce to enable us to gain access to the talent they need to grow their business.
As we see in the February Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) data, the temporary labor force showed very strong growth – staffing increased by 45,200 jobs in February, on top of the 32,100 jobs in January. Year over year, temporary staffing in the U.S. was up 9.5 percent in February, accelerating from an increase of 8.1 percent in January and 7.5 percent in December.
Furthermore, the percentage of the workforce employed through temporary staffing is accelerating at an increased rate and is now rounded up to 1.9 percent, well above the cycle low of 1.3 percent, and almost up to its prior peak of 1.95 percent. This lends credence to the still unfolding secular shift towards the use of a greater degree of temporary labor in the workforce.
The overall BLS and household surveys, as well as ADP data smoothed over three months, increased to 280,000 jobs added for the month of February, its strongest performance since 2006. Additionally, the BLS Establishment survey also remained solid. BLS reported an increase by 227,000 jobs for February and January was revised up to 285,000. This marks the third month in a row of 200,000+ jobs being added.
A CLIENT’S PERSPECTIVE
“The war for talent is ongoing. We have learned our lesson the hard way as we continue to have our employees recruited away. Additionally, it was a challenge for us to bring on new employees due to pricing or delays in the hiring process.”
- Major Kforce West Coast Client
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