Today’s data from September’s Employment Situation Summary from The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) aligned with analysts’ expectations of moderate growth. The BLS reported a gain of 263,000 non-farm jobs while unemployment edged down to 3.5 percent.
Unemployment among the college-educated civilian workforce, the primary target of the MRINetwork’s recruitment efforts, was at 1.8 percent — essentially at full employment among this cohort.
In September, 5.2 percent of employed persons teleworked because of the coronavirus pandemic, down from 6.5 percent in the prior month. In May 2020, the first month these data were collected, 35.4 percent of employed persons teleworked because of the coronavirus pandemic.
“The U.S. economy has fully recovered all of the jobs lost during the Covid-induced shutdown and today’s BLS report shows continued labor market resilience in spite of economic and geopolitical headwinds,” said Bert Miller, President and CEO of MRI — a global Network of over 250 executive recruiting firms.
“Our consultants have been consistent in their advice to clients, urging them to focus on what they can control as leaders with particular emphasis on building talented teams and relentlessly investing in innovation. At MRINetwork, we have practiced what we preach with investments in top talent and strategic priorities to fuel growth in a rapidly changing labor market.
MRINetwork has actively invested in transformative strategies, strengthening capabilities and offerings as a digital-first recruiting organization of the future. These efforts have allowed our Network firms to recover rapidly during the pandemic — not only to recover, but to thrive in spite of it — with growth in executive placement revenue nearly double the industry average since 2019.”
In a speech this week, Fed governor Phillip Jefferson reflected on the resilience of the job market, “In a market with more job openings than workers, the competition to fill vacancies is leading to rapid wage gains now, and the resulting salary compression may lead to further upward wage pressures in the future.”
CNBC reporter Jeff Cox put today’s numbers in context of the Fed’s efforts to tame inflation. “The report comes amid a months-long Federal Reserve effort to bring down inflation running near its highest annual rate in more than 40 years. The central bank has raised rates five times this year for a total of 3 percentage points and is expected to continue hiking through at least the end of the year.
Despite the increases, job growth had remained relatively strong as companies face a massive mismatch between supply and demand that has left about 1.7 job openings for every available worker. That in turn has helped drive up wages, though the increase in average hourly earnings has fallen well short of the inflation rate, which most recently was at 8.3%.”
In September, employment rose by 263,000 and has averaged 420,000 thus far in 2022 compared with 562,000 per month in 2021.
Leisure and hospitality added 83,000 jobs in September, in line with the average monthly job gain over the first 8 months of the year. Within the industry, employment in food services and drinking places rose by 60,000 in September. Employment in leisure and hospitality is below its pre-pandemic February 2020 level by 1.1 million, or 6.7 percent.
In September, employment in healthcare rose by 60,000 and has returned to its February 2020 level.
Employment in professional and business services continued its upward trend in September (+46,000). Thus far in 2022, job growth in the industry has averaged 72,000 per month.
Manufacturing employment continued to trend up in September (+22,000). Job gains occurred in motor vehicles and parts (+8,000), fabricated metal products (+6,000), and electrical equipment and appliances (+3,000).
In September, employment in construction continued to trend up (+19,000), in line with average monthly job growth in the first 8 months of this year.
Employment in wholesale trade continued its upward trend in September (+11,000) while employment in financial services was little changed versus the prior month.
Employment showed little change over the month in other major industries, including mining, retail trade, information, other services, and government.
“My observations with today’s BLS Employment Situation Report put a spotlight on my firm’s performance in the talent advisory space. But the same lessons apply in any organization. As a tenured business leader or as an up-and-coming talented top performer, challenge yourself daily to be relentless in your pursuit of innovative excellence. Through the challenging months ahead be laser-focused on providing your organization and future leaders with the resources they need to grow. And as importantly clearly define your organization’s purpose and mission that aligns with shared core values,” noted Miller.