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CareerBuilder’s Mid-Year Job Forecast Provides Encouraging Outlook for U.S. Job Seekers


CHICAGO, – Will escalating energy costs impact hiring in the back half of the year? Eighty-three percent of U.S. employers say no, according to CareerBuilder’s 2011 Mid-Year Job Forecast. CareerBuilder’s latest survey shows employers remain positive in their hiring expectations for the remainder of 2011 despite ongoing concerns over threats to economic growth. Nearly half of employers (47 percent) plan to hire new employees from July through December, up from 41 percent in 2010. The survey, which was conducted by Harris Interactive© from May 19 to June 8, 2011, included more than 2,600 hiring managers and human resource professionals.

The number of companies hiring specifically for full-time, permanent staff rose 7 percentage points over last year:

• Hiring full-time, permanent employees – 35 percent, up from 28 percent in 2010

• Hiring part-time employees – 15 percent, the same as 2010

• Hiring contract or temporary employees – 12 percent, up from 9 percent in 2010

Similar to last year’s study, the top three functional areas for which businesses plan to hire first are those on the front lines with customers and those driving innovation. Customer Service remains in the No. 1 spot for recruitment with Information Technology slightly edging out Sales this year for the No. 2 ranking on the list:

1) Customer Service - 23 percent

2) Information Technology - 21 percent

3) Sales - 20 percent

4) Administrative – 15 percent

5) Business Development – 11 percent

6) Accounting/Finance – 10 percent

7) Marketing – 9 percent

“Last year, certain sectors or departments in companies were producing jobs. This year, the U.S. is seeing job creation in all industries, functions and company sizes,” said Matt Ferguson, CEO of CareerBuilder. “Our survey, listings on, and conversations we have with employers on a daily basis all indicate that hiring activity will sustain and improve in the months to come with a diverse mix of jobs. While higher energy prices, debt, inflation and other factors may deter a significant acceleration in hiring, employers have encouraging news for the millions of Americans who are looking for jobs.”

Hiring By Region

All regions are trending above 2010 in hiring prospects for the second half of 2011 with the South appearing the most optimistic.

• South – 38 percent hiring full-time, permanent employees, up from 27 percent last year

• West – 35 percent hiring full-time, permanent employees, up from 28 percent last year

• Northeast – 34 percent hiring full-time, permanent employees, up from 29 percent last year

• Midwest – 32 percent hiring full-time, permanent employees, up from 28 percent last year

Employee Turnover

The competition for specialized talent is expected to heat up as employers recruit and try to retain top performers for hard-to-fill positions in areas like healthcare and technology. More than one-third (35 percent) of employers are concerned that key talent will leave their organizations as the economy improves, a trend that became increasingly evident over the last six months. Eighteen percent of employers reported top workers left their organization in the second quarter, up from 14 percent in the first quarter.

Shortage of Skilled Workers

Fifty percent of employers reported there is a shortage of skills within their organization, up from 48 percent last year. The biggest shortages were reported in the areas of Information Technology, Customer Service and Communications.

Looking at a subset of Human Resource managers, more than one-third (36 percent) reported they have positions for which they can’t find qualified candidates, up from 32 percent last year.

Hiring in Q2 2011

Twenty-nine percent of employers added full-time, permanent headcount in the second quarter, up from 24 percent last year and 28 percent last quarter. Eleven percent decreased headcount while 59 percent made no change in staff levels and 1 percent were unsure.

Hiring in Q3 2011

For eight consecutive quarters, actual hiring exceeded what was originally anticipated, indicating that employers tend to be more conservative in projections than hiring behavior. Looking forward, 26 percent of employers plan to add full-time, permanent employees in the third quarter, but if trends persist, that number may come in higher at quarter end.

Eight percent expect to downsize staffs. Sixty-one percent anticipate no change while 5 percent are undecided.

Looking at actual hiring for the third quarter in 2010, 25 percent of employers reported they had hired full-time, permanent staff while 12 percent decreased headcount.

Survey Methodology

This survey was conducted online within the U.S. by Harris Interactive© on behalf of CareerBuilder among 2,662 U.S. hiring managers (non-government) between May 19 and June 8, 2011 (percentages for some questions are based on a subset, based on their responses to certain questions). With a pure probability sample of 2,662, one could say with a 95 percent probability that the overall results have a sampling error of +/- 1.90 percentage points. Sampling error for data from sub-samples is higher and varies.

About CareerBuilder®

CareerBuilder is the global leader in human capital solutions, helping companies target and attract their most important asset - their people. Its online career site,®, is the largest in the United States with more than 24 million unique visitors, 1 million jobs and 40 million resumes. CareerBuilder works with the world’s top employers, providing resources for everything from employment branding and data analysis to recruitment support. More than 9,000 websites, including 140 newspapers and broadband portals such as MSN and AOL, feature CareerBuilder’s proprietary job search technology on their career sites. Owned by Gannett Co., Inc. (NYSE:GCI), Tribune Company and The McClatchy Company (NYSE:MNI), CareerBuilder and its subsidiaries operate in the United States, Europe, Canada and Asia. For more information, visit


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