SHRM LINE Report: Hiring Expectation Positive for Manufacturing, Lackluster for Service Sector

Sep 4, 2014

Recruiting difficulties continued in August for sixth straight month in both sectors

ALEXANDRIA, Va. — For the sixth straight month, manufacturing hiring will increase from the previous year, according to the Society for Human Resource Management’s (SHRM’s) monthly Leading Indicators of National Employment® (LINE) Report released today.

September also marks the fifth straight month that a net of at least 50 percent of manufacturers surveyed will expand their payrolls.

According to the report, roughly half of manufacturers (50.5 percent) will add jobs in September, while less than one-third of service-sector companies (29.9 percent) will increase positions—an 11-point rise in hiring for manufacturing and a 9.5-point decrease for the service-sector industry compared to a year ago.

The SHRM LINE Report, based on a survey of human resource professionals, predicts employment activity for the coming month about 30 days before statistics on employment for the same time frame are available from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

While hiring trends in manufacturing have moved in a positive direction, recruiting difficulty has remained problematic for HR professionals.

Recruiting challenges in August rose for the sixth consecutive month when compared with the previous year, making it the fourth consecutive month that recruiting difficulties have reached four-year highs.

“Even though employment expectations are down in the service sector, it isn’t making it easier to find highly skilled job seekers for positions that are of utmost importance to companies,” explained Jennifer Schramm, manager of workforce trends at SHRM.

Related to new-hire compensation, wages are remaining fairly flat in both sectors. The index shows that most organizations are not increasing new-hire compensation, rising only slightly in manufacturing (2.9 points) and falling slightly in services (5 points) in August, compared to a year ago.

The LINE Report provides a snapshot of month-ahead hiring expectations and examines difficulty in recruiting top-level talent, new-hire compensation and job vacancies. Respondents include HR professionals from private service-sector companies and manufacturing companies. Together, these sectors employ more than 90 percent of U.S. private-sector workers.

Media: To read the full SHRM LINE Report, visit The Jobs Outlook Survey Report is available at Follow SHRM Research on Twitter @SHRM_Research.

The SHRM LINE Report is typically released at 8:30 a.m. Eastern time on the first Thursday of each month. The SHRM employment expectations index describes the same time period referenced a month later by the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Employment Situation report.

For more information or an interview with a LINE researcher, contact Vanessa Gray of SHRM Public Affairs at 703-535-6072 or

About the Society for Human Resource Management
Founded in 1948, the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) is the world’s largest HR membership organization devoted to human resource management. Representing more than 275,000 members in over 160 countries, the Society is the leading provider of resources to serve the needs of HR professionals and advance the professional practice of human resource management. SHRM has more than 575 affiliated chapters within the United States and subsidiary offices in China, India and United Arab Emirates. Visit us at and follow us on Twitter @SHRMPress.


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