According to last week’s figures from the Labor Department, fewer people sought unemployment benefits. Weekly applications for jobless aid fell 9,000 to a seasonally adjusted 282,000. Additionally, the four-week average of jobless claims fell 7,750 to 297,000. Furthermore, over the past 12 months, that average has tumbled about 7 percent!
This confirms what my executive recruiting firm has observed anecdotally over the past five months. In particular, we have noticed that hiring has accelerated for many staff-level R&D, scientific, engineering, technical, IT and manufacturing positions. Additionally, many technical recruiting, engineering recruiting, R&D recruiting, scientific recruiting, IT recruiting and manufacturing recruiting firms that we polled recently share this view. Though this trend has not yet extrapolated into substantially increased managerial hiring, the demand for excellent, technical, individual level contributors far exceeds the supply. That is why our executive recruitment firm is constantly urging our clients to increase their hiring of women and minorities.
Women and minorities now make up a greater share of the U.S. workforce according to a recent report by CareerBuilder. The report, “The Changing Face of U.S. Jobs,” analyzed how a more diverse population is affecting the composition of about 800 jobs by gender, age and race or ethnicity.
In 2014, 49% of jobs were held by women, compared with 48% in 2001. That amounts to 4,900,000 more female workers added since 2001 versus only 2,200,000 more male workers.
Hispanic and Asian workers also made major gains over the past 13 years. In 2014, Hispanics held 13% of all jobs, which was up from only 11% in 2001. Asians held 5% of jobs last year, which up from 4% in 2001. Additionally, the percentage of African-American workers rose in 22% of all occupations. Moreover, women and minorities made gains in 44% of the 50 highest paying professions.
However, a lot more needs to be done to assimilate women and minorities into the workforce. With the scarcity of many positions, companies need to “leave no stone unturned” in their quest for the best possible talent. This means making an even greater effort to recruit women and minorities. This should not be done out of goodwill. Instead, it makes very good business sense!
What are your thoughts?