SHRM Report: May 2012 Job Creation Holds Steady

May 3, 2012

SHRM Report: May 2012 Job Creation Holds Steady

Alexandria, Va. – Hiring by U.S. companies is expected to hold steady in May 2012 though lag when compared on an annual basis according to a report from the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) that surveyed approximately 500 service-sector companies and 500 manufacturing companies.

The report shows that service-sector hiring will drop by a net of 17.1 points and manufacturing-sector hiring will drop by a net of 3.8 points, when comparing May 2012 to May 2011.

The month alone, however, shows a more positive outlook—far more employers plan to hire than lay off workers.

In the manufacturing sector, 46.6 percent of respondents said their company will hire workers while 6.1 percent will cut jobs, leaving a positive net of 40.5 percent that will offer employment.

In the service sector, 35.5 percent of companies represented in the survey will hire while only 5.1 percent will trim payrolls, leaving a net of 30.4 percent expected to add workers.

The findings are detailed in the SHRM Leading Indicators of National Employment® (LINE®) Report. LINE features the only national monthly employment indices capturing HR professionals’ month-ahead hiring expectations, and past-month recruiting difficulty. The report also includes a new-hire compensation index and an index of exempt and non-exempt job vacancies.

“Year-over-year comparisons show employment expectations trending slightly down for May—especially in the service sector—however, overall hiring expectations continue to be fairly positive,” said Jennifer Schramm, GPHR, and manager of workplace trends and forecasting at SHRM.

Where recruiting difficulty is examined, the index for April 2012—LINE’s analysis of past-month data—shows little change on an annual basis.

The number of companies reporting increased new-hire compensation also changed little, on an annual basis, remaining largely flat. The few that did report changes were more likely to increase than decrease new-hire compensation: a net of 9.1 percent in the service sector (9.3 percent increased while 0.2 percent decreased); and a net of 7.7 percent in the manufacturing sector (8.7 percent increased while one percent decreased).

Highlights of SHRM LINE year-over-year findings:

Employment Expectations



In May, the hiring rate will fall slightly in manufacturing and drop sharply in services compared with a year ago.

-3.8 points

-17.1 points

Recruiting Difficulty

In April, recruiting difficulty was virtually unchanged in both sectors compared with a year ago.

+1.6 points

-2.8 points

New-Hire Compensation

In April, the rate of increase for new-hire compensation fell slightly in both sectors compared with a year ago.

-0.5 points

-4.3 points

Source: SHRM Leading Indicators of National Employment

To read the full SHRM LINE Report, visit: and click the “Latest LINE Report” button. Follow SHRM Research on Twitter @SHRM_Research.

Media: The SHRM LINE Report is 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 approximately one month later in the Employment SituationReport issued by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.


About the Society for Human Resource Management

The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) is the world’s largest association devoted to human resource management. Representing more than 250,000 members in over 140 countries, the Society serves the needs of HR professionals and advances the interests of the HR profession. Founded in 1948, SHRM has more than 575 affiliated chapters within the United States and subsidiary offices in China and India. Visit SHRM Online at and follow us on Twitter at


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