Hiring Trends to Continue for 2016

U.S. employers remain confident in their hiring plans as they embark on a new year, according to CareerBuilder’s annual job forecast. Thirty-six percent of employers plan to add full-time, permanent employees in 2016, the same as in 2015. Nearly one-half of employers (47%) plan to hire temporary or contract workers.

Workers can also expect to see higher starting salaries, more teens in internships, more women and minorities in leadership, and more opportunities to move from low-skill to high-skill jobs, among other trends.

“On average, the U.S. has added 200,000 jobs each month over the last 2 years, and we expect 2016 to produce similar results, if not better,” said Matt Ferguson, CEO of CareerBuilder and coauthor of The Talent Equation. “The market is also showing signs of broader wage pressure. While employers have been more willing to pay a premium for high-skill labor, they now have to pay more competitive wages for entry-level positions. Workers are gaining leverage.” 

The national survey was conducted online by Harris Poll on behalf of CareerBuilder from November 4, 2015, to December 1, 2015, and included a representative sample of 2,338 hiring managers and human resources professionals across industries.

Full-Time, Permanent Hiring

While more than one-third of employers are increasing their full-time, permanent headcount, 45% anticipate no change. One in ten employers (10%) plan to decrease staff levels, while 9% are unsure of their hiring plans. 

Comparing industries, financial services (46%), information technology (44%), and health care (43%) are expected to outperform the national average for employers adding full-time staff. Manufacturing (37%) is expected to mirror the national average.  

Temporary and Contract Hiring

Employers are also optimistic about temporary employment. Forty-seven percent reported they will add temporary or contract workers in 2016, up slightly from 46% last year. Of these employers, 58% plan to transition some temporary or contract workers into permanent roles in 2016.

Hot Areas for Hiring

Of the employers who plan to increase the number of full-time employees in the New Year, the top areas they’ll be recruiting for include:

  • Customer service—32%
  • Information technology—29%
  • Sales—27%
  • Production—24%
  • Administrative—20%
  • Marketing—18%
  • Business development—16%
  • Human resources—16%
  • Accounting/finance—15%
  • Engineering—13%

Small Business Hiring

Small business managers are feeling better about their financial prospects in 2016 and are looking to expand their staff.

  • Of businesses with 50 or fewer employees, 27% plan to hire full-time, permanent employees, up from 20% last year.
  • Of those with 250 or fewer employees, 33% plan to hire full-time, permanent employees, up from 29% last year.

Among larger companies with more than 500 employees, 42% plan to add full-time, permanent employees, on par with last year (43%).

Hiring By Region

At 42%, the West has the highest percentage of employers expecting to add full-time, permanent headcount, followed by the South (36%), the Midwest (34%) and the Northeast (30%). However, the West also houses the highest percentage of employers expecting to decrease staff, at 12%, compared to 10% in the Northeast and the Midwest and 9% in the South.

Tomorrow, more from the CareerBuilder survey, plus an introduction to an interactive webinar, Cutting-Edge Recruiting Tactics: How to Stretch Your Candidate-Sourcing Skills Beyond LinkedIn and Facebook.

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