Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Pittsburgh region's jobless rate holds steady

The unemployment rate in the seven-county Pittsburgh region held steady in May at 6.8 percent, the same rate recorded in March and April, the state Department of Labor and Industry reported today.

The labor climate locally continued to outperform the state and the nation as a whole, with the May jobless rate at 7.4 percent in Pennsylvania and 8.2 percent nationwide.
In May a year ago, the jobless rate in the Pittsburgh region was 7.3 percent.

After smoothing out seasonal spikes in hiring, the labor department reported nonfarm jobs in the region fell by 2,500 last month, the second straight monthly decline.

Unadjusted figures showed employers in the region added 7,800 jobs in May as the goods-producing sector gained 1,500 positions and the service sector added 6,300.
Among goods-producing industries, construction added 1,800 jobs, the smallest May increase since 2006. Compared to May 2011, construction jobs were off by 4,100.

Manufacturing jobs fell by 400 in May following three months of gains.

In the service sector, which showed the weakest bump up in May since 2005, professional and business services posted a strong gain of 1,600 jobs while education and health services lost 5,000.

Leisure and hospitality added 6,100 jobs and local government gained 1,200. But federal and state government trimmed 1,100 jobs.

Among the seven counties in the region, Butler had the lowest jobless rate in May at 6.1 percent and Fayette had the highest at 8.6 percent.

Across Pennsylvania, unemployment rates ranged from 5.5 percent in Centre County to 10.5 percent in Cameron County.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

U.S. Chamber of Commerce touts Pittsburgh's job creation

By Tracie Mauriello / Post-Gazette Washington Bureau    
WASHINGTON -- Pennsylvania doesn't appear anywhere on the U.S. Chamber of Commerce's top 10 lists of exporters, job creators or producers of college graduates, but travel to the southwest corner and you'll find a center of innovation so strong that it's the national business group's best role model for job creation.

The Chamber released its findings Wednesday in two reports issued at the conservative business group's annual Jobs Summit. One of the reports highlights Pittsburgh and Denver, cities that over the past two years had more job growth than the country's other metropolitan areas with populations of more than 1 million.

Pittsburgh showed 3.9 percent job growth and Denver showed 3.8 percent, while the average for the other 49 largest metropolitan areas is 2.8 percent.

The Chamber attributed the cities' success to networking and business partnerships, but the cities have one more thing in common: a history of hosting huge conventions that put the eyes of the world on them.

Denver hosted the 2008 Democratic National Convention; Pittsburgh, the 2009 G-20 world economic summit.

"You simply cannot put a dollar figure on the kind of marketing that occurred. ... Everybody knows about Denver now," Mayor Michael Hancock said during a panel discussion Wednesday.

Likewise, the G-20 helped raise Pittsburgh's profile as a convention destination and as an innovative city that transformed itself after the decline of the steel industry.

"It enabled us to show off our city, to show off some of the things we have, and we did ... gain some business growth from that," Allegheny County Executive Rich Fitzgerald said. It was worth the disruptions caused by road closures and security measures surrounding the summit, he said.

Read more: http://www.post-gazette.com/stories/business/news/us-chamber-touts-pittsburghs-job-creation-640310

Friday, June 1, 2012

Manpower Group: 10 toughest jobs to fill

The hardest jobs to fill globally are skilled trades workers, engineers and sales representatives, according to Manpower Group’s survey of nearly 40,000 employers across 41 countries and territories. Skilled trades and engineers have become harder to find since last year, as demand outstrips supply. Sales representatives’ continued presence in the top 10 is a result of companies continuing to seek out experienced sales people who can help drive revenue growth.

Jobs most in demand in 2012
Jobs most in demand in 2011
1. Skilled Trades Workers
1. Technicians
2. Engineers
2. Sales Representatives
3. Sales Representatives
3. Skilled Trades Workers
4. Technicians
4. Engineers
5. Drivers
5. Laborers
6. Laborers
6. Management/ Executives
7. IT Staff
7. Accounting & Finance Staff
8. Accounting & Finance Staff
8. IT Staff
9. Chefs/Cooks
9. Production Operators
10. Management/Executives
10. Secretaries, PAs, Admin Assistants, & Office Support Staff

Talent supply and demand issues are generally more acute in the Asia Pacific and the Americas region than in EMEA. Globally, employers having the most difficulty finding the right people to fill jobs are located in Japan (81%), Brazil (71%), Bulgaria (51%), Australia (50%), USA (49%), India (48%), New Zealand (48%), Taiwan (47%), Panama (47%), Romania (45%), Argentina (45%), Mexico (43%) and Germany (42%). Talent shortages are least problematic in Ireland and the Netherlands. The percentage of employers reporting difficulties has remained relatively consistent over time, however India has displayed volatility where the proportion dropped 19 percentage points since last year, but jumped 51 percentage points the year before that. The number of employers struggling to fill roles in France has jumped 9 percentage points whereas it has dropped 15 percentage points in Italy.

Regionally, employers in the Americas are having more trouble filling jobs than the global average, with 41% of employers reporting difficulty filling positions due to lack of available talent. This figure represents the highest proportion of employers reporting difficulty since the start of the global economic downturn in 2008, and a 4% increase over last year’s survey. Despite this, employers are less concerned about the impact talent shortages have on key stakeholders with more than half (58%) believing the talent shortage will have little or no impact, up from 38% in 2011.

For the first time in the survey’s seven year history, employers in the Americas report engineering roles as the most difficult to fill across the region, up from fourth last year. While the role does not top the list in any individual country, it ranks second in Argentina, Canada, Costa Rica and the United States. Employers in Brazil (71%), the USA (49%) and Panama (47%) are having the most difficulty finding staff. Year-over-year, employers report greater difficulty filling vacancies in seven of the 10 countries. The most common strategy implemented by employers in the Americas to address talent shortages is additional training and development for existing staff, up from 32% in 2011 to 37% this year, and considerably more than the global average of 25%.

View the whole report here.