LINE: Year-End Hiring Closes Positively

By SHRM Online staff Dec 4, 2014
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Job creation rates for this month are expected to increase in the manufacturing and service sectors compared with December 2013, according to the latest Leading Indicators of National Employment (LINE) survey results, released Dec. 4, 2014, by the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM).

A net of two out of five manufacturers (39.9 percent) and one-third of service-sector companies (33.3 percent) will add jobs in December, according to the latest report, which examines employers’ hiring expectations, job vacancies, difficulty in recruiting top-level talent and new-hire compensation. The monthly survey comprises responses from private-sector human resource professionals at 500 manufacturing and service-sector companies.

Employment Expectations

Manufacturing

Services

The December hiring rate will rise in manufacturing and services compared with December 2013.

+8.3

+4.4

Recruiting Difficulty

In November 2014, recruiting difficulty increased in both sectors compared with a year ago.

+17.5

+12.4

New-Hire Compensation



In November 2014, the rate of increase for new-hire compensation rose in manufacturing and dropped slightly in services compared with November 2013.

+4.4

-1.2

Source: SHRM Leading Indicators of National Employment (LINE), www.shrm.org/line

Employment Expectations

In December, the hiring rate for manufacturing will increase when compared with the previous year, reaching a four-year high. This is the ninth straight month the sector’s hiring outpaced the same month in 2013. In addition, for the seventh time in eight months the service-sector hiring rate also will increase when compared with the previous year. Layoff rates in both sectors are expected to fall to four-year lows for the month.

A net of 39.9 percent of manufacturers will add jobs in December (48.9 percent will hire, 9 percent will cut jobs). The sector’s hiring index will rise by 8.3 points compared with December 2013. Likewise, in November, a net total of 10.6 percent of manufacturers reported increases in exempt vacancies (24 percent reported more vacancies, 13.4 percent reported fewer), up 4.1 points from November 2013. A net total of 18.1 percent of manufacturers also reported that nonexempt vacancies rose in November, a 1.6-point increase from November 2013.

A net of 33.3 percent of service-sector companies reported they will grow payrolls in December (40.3 percent will hire, 7 percent will cut jobs). The index will rise by 4.4 points compared with December 2013. A net total of 12.5 percent of service-sector respondents also reported increases in exempt vacancies in November (20.8 percent reported more vacancies, 8.3 percent reported fewer)—up 2.3 points from November last year; a net total of 22.1 percent of respondents reported an increase in nonexempt vacancies in November—up 7.2 points from November 2013.

Recruiting Difficulty and New-Hire Compensation

Perhaps the most notable findings from this month’s report involve recruiting difficulty, said Jennifer Schramm, GPHR, manager of SHRM’s workforce trends and forecasting.

“Both manufacturing and service-sector organizations are reporting increased recruiting difficulty when it comes to filling jobs of most strategic importance,” she said. “November is also the ninth consecutive month that recruiting difficulty rose in both sectors when compared with the previous year.”

A net of 31.1 percent of manufacturers said they had more difficulty with recruiting in November, an increase of 17.5 points from November 2013 and the highest net since May 2006. A net of 31.1 percent of service-sector HR professionals had more difficulty recruiting in November, an increase of 12.4 points from a year ago and the highest service net since data collection began for that sector in October 2005. November marks the ninth consecutive month that recruiting difficulty has risen in both sectors when compared with the previous year.

In the manufacturing sector, a net total of 12.2 percent of respondents also reported increasing new-hire compensation in November—an increase of 4.4 points from November 2013. In the service sector, a net total of 10.8 percent of companies increased new-hire compensation in November, down 1.2 points from a year ago.

The index’s data overall show that most organizations are not increasing new-hire compensation, although the manufacturing net total represented a four-year high for the month of November. Recent Bureau of Labor Statistics findings showed that real average hourly earnings increased a mere 0.4 percent in October 2014 compared with October 2013.​

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