Report: Regional Employment Demand Holds Steady

IT,Health Care Show Strong Results in First Quarter

DBusiness Journal

DETROIT — The Workforce Intelligence Network of Southeast Michigan (WIN) released its first quarterly report today outlining labor market trends, including real-time employer demand determined through online job postings, for the nine counties of southeast Michigan that includes Genesee, Livingston, Macomb, Monroe, Oakland, Shiawassee, St. Clair, Washtenaw, Wayne, and the city of Detroit.

For first quarter 2013, WIN found the following:

  • The regional labor market held fairly steady over the last year, from January 2012 to January 2013.
  • The size of the region’s labor force — those actively working or seeking work increased by 7,495, less than a fraction of a percent.
  • The number employed — those with either full-time or part-time jobs — declined by 2,324 workers, also less than a fraction of a percent.
  • The number of people unemployed — those actively looking and available for work — climbed by 9,819, almost 4 percent.
  • The number of online job postings for Q1 2013 was 76,185. This represents an increase of 37.8 percent over Q4 2012 but a 7.7 percent decline compared to Q1 2012.

WIN’s priority occupational clusters include information technology, health care, engineering and design, and skilled trades:

  • Information technology saw the strongest employer demand in Q1 2013 with 11,360 postings.  This is up 21 percent from Q4 2012 and 22 percent compared to a year ago.
  • Q1 2013 health care postings jumped 40 percent over Q4 2012 but showed a 1 percent decline compared to the same period last year.
  • Q1 2013 demand for engineers/designers was up 7.8 percent over a year ago yet down 14 percent from Q4 2012.
  • Q1 2013 demand for skilled trades climbed 45% over Q1 2012 but fell 14% from last quarter (Q4 2012).

Employer demad for jobs from online postings included:

  • Skilled trades and technicians: 3,652 (Q1 2013) up from 2,512 (Q1 2012)
  • Engineers and designers: 5,656 (Q1 2013), up from 5,246 (Q1 2012)
  • IT: 11,360 (Q1 2013) up from 9,257 (Q1 2012)
  • Health Care: 7,873 (Q1 2013) dwn from 8,005 (Q1 2012) but up from 5,612 (Q4 2012)

The region’s top 5 job postings for first quarter 2013 were:

  • Mechanical Engineers (2,434 postings)
  • Computer Programmers (2,121 postings)
  • Software Developers, Applications (2,101 postings)
  • Registered Nurses (2060 postings)
  • Retail Salespersons (1,968 postings)

The top-five demand mix is roughly the same as in 2012, although demand for computer programmers has moved to 2nd overall, up from seventh. Together, these top-five jobs represent 15 percent of the region’s total employer demand (online postings) in the first quarter 2013.

Each WIN county and the city of Detroit showed gains in job postings in the first quarter 2013 when compared to Q4 2012. Only Wayne County, spurred by demand in the city of Detroit, showed continued gains in demand above Q1 2012 levels.  All others saw postings below Q1 2012 levels.

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