Recruiting Blog

Labor Department Job Report: 211,000 New Positions Created; Engineering and Technical Talent In Short Supply


Labor Department November Job Report

The BLS job report on Friday morning said that the U.S. economy had another month of robust job growth in November, by increasing a seasonally adjusted 211,000 in November. This marked America’s 62nd straight month of jobs creation.

The unemployment rate remained unchanged at 5%, reflecting an expansion in the labor force as more Americans came off the sidelines and began searching for jobs. However, this unemployment figure still is the lowest since April 2008.

The Labor Department also reported jobs revisions for the past two months with 35,000 additional jobs over what was previously estimated. This raised October’s employment gains by 27,000 to 298,000 from the initially reported 271,000. This upward revision resulted in October being the strongest month of job creation this year. Also, September’s employment was raised 8,000 jobs to 145,000 from the initially reported 137,000 jobs created.

November’s solid employment figure lifted the average monthly jobs gain to 218,000 for the past three months, which is up slightly from the solid pace over the past year.

Real Unemployment At 9.9%

Unfortunately, a broader measure of unemployment that includes both: a) 6,100,000 Americans who are involuntarily working part-time jobs and b) 1,700,000 workers who are too discouraged to look for work was up slightly in November to 9.9%.

Additionally, Friday’s jobs report suggested some of the workers who had previously given up looking for work might be starting to come back into the workforce. The labor-force participation rose to 62.5% last month, from 62.4% in October. Still, the share of Americans looking for work remains near a 40-year low.

Proof That Technical And Engineering Talent In Short Supply And High Demand

Job growth was wide spread among a range of industries in November. For example, the sector of Professional and Technical Services rose by 28,000 jobs. This includes employment in the research and development (R&D), technical, engineering, scientific and information technology (IT) areas both our engineering recruiting and technical recruiting divisions cover. Additionally, over the past year, the professional and technical services sector has added 298,000 jobs. This confirms what our surveys of other engineering recruiters, technical recruiters, R&D recruiters, IT recruiters, scientific recruiters and manufacturing recruiters have been reporting over the past eight months. Namely, that demand for technical and engineering talent far exceeds the supply!

The only two major sectors that reported losses were: 1) The mining sector, which has been pummeled by low oil prices, fell by 11,000 last month, and has fallen for 11 straight months for a total of 123,000 lost jobs and 2) the Information sector, which includes motion pictures and sound recording, which fell by 12,000 jobs in November.

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