U.S. Hiring Expected to Remain Strong

The U.S. hiring pace for the third quarter of 2017 is projected to remain positive, according to the most recent ManpowerGroup Employment Outlook survey. This marks the 12th consecutive quarter with a net employment outlook of +15 percent or stronger.

Nearly one in four employers, 24 percent, plan to add to staff between July and September, while 70 percent expect to keep their workforce intact through the next three months, and only 4 percent expect workforce reductions. The remaining 2 percent are unsure about hiring plans.

Outlook by Region

In order to measure hiring intentions, Manpower interviewed more than 11,000 employers within the United States, including employers in all 50 states, the top 100 metropolitan statistical areas, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico.
The survey finds a positive outlook nationwide.
In comparison to the second quarter of 2017, hiring intentions remain relatively stable in both the Midwest and the Northeast, while employers report no change in both the South and the West. Compared with this time one year ago, hiring prospects are slightly stronger in the Midwest and remain relatively stable in the South and West. Employers in the Northeast report no change year over year.
For the third quarter of 2017, employers in these states report the strongest net employment outlook:

  • Michigan
  • Colorado
  • Rhode Island
  • Nebraska
  • Iowa

Among the 100 largest metropolitan statistical areas, the strongest job prospects are expected in these cities:

  • Grand Rapids, Mich., +36 percent
  • Raleigh, N.C., +32 percent
  • Charlotte, N.C., +31 percent
  • Colorado Springs, Colo., +31 percent
  • Des Moines, Iowa, +30 percent

For the third quarter of 2017, these are the states with the least favorable net employment outlook:

  • Connecticut
  • Wyoming
  • Mississippi
  • Kansas
  • West Virginia

Puerto Rico is also on the list.
The following metro areas have the least favorable outlook:

  • Hartford, Conn., 0 percent
  • Jackson, Miss., +8 percent
  • Bridgeport, Conn., +9 percent
  • New York, +10 percent
  • Wichita, Kan., +11 percent

Outlook by Industry

Manpower notes that the mix of industries within the survey follows the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) supersectors, which is structured to be representative of the U.S. economy.
Nationwide, employers in all 13 NAICS industry sectors expect to add staff in the third quarter.
Industries reporting the strongest hiring intentions are:

  • Leisure & Hospitality, +25 percent
  • Transportation & Utilities, +22 percent
  • Wholesale & Retail Trade, +21 percent
  • Mining, +18 percent
  • Professional & Business Services, +18 percent

Industries reporting the weakest hiring intentions are:

  • Other services, +11 percent
  • Manufacturing – Nondurable Goods, +12 percent
  • Information, +13 percent
  • Government, +13 percent

Big Picture Outlook

In releasing survey findings, Manpower indicates that organizations continue to show resilience in the face of shifting policies and political uncertainty.
Yet a certain amount of caution also prevails.
“Employers across the country are optimistic but don’t want to get ahead of themselves,” said Michael Stull, senior vice president of Manpower North America. “In most sectors, employers report relatively stable hiring plans with some upticks – most notably in durable goods manufacturing, where there are the strongest hiring intentions in more than nine years.”
Meanwhile, employers recognize that the labor market continues to evolve.
“Technological disruption is rapidly changing skills needs, especially in manufacturing as the marketplace transitions from typical labor to more advanced roles. To keep up, we’re seeing employers increasingly invest in training and development programs so people can learn while they earn,” said Stull.