I spent some time this morning pulling some data and analyzing our metrics from February. Though expecting to see a reflection of the economic status, I was very surprised to see actual growth in the number of job postings from Jan to Feb 2009. Trust me, I didn't believe it at first either. I went back and forth, looking over the numbers in various ways from various reports, but it's true. That being said, it doesn't mean the job search will now be easy.
New and recent college grads will need to re-evaluate their career plans. After looking at the data, my suggestion is to find work with a small business or non-profit where you can gain experience quickly, and see tangible results of your work. This market is up, and it makes for a great foundation for the rest of your career. Here are some more highlights from the job data in New England from the leading recruiting resources of JobsInTheUS...
While there's no doubt that this year's wave of college grads will have greater difficulty landing their dream jobs, the current economic situation is providing a new avenue of opportunity for them. In fact, the February data for New England has been very positive, with the number of job postings actually increasing by 30% from January. As has been widely reported, job growth in health care continues, particularly in nursing and medical practice, accounting for nearly 10% of all job postings in January and February 2009.
But what if you don't have a health care related degree? The best companies realize that during such economic times, it's absolutely critical to maintain positive client-facing activities. As such, there will continue to be strength in sales, marketing, and customer support positions. Unfortunately for new college grads, there is heavy competition for these positions, and experience in this sector is generally very important. One exception to that is social media marketing. Because of the nature of social media services, and the lack of costs normally associated with them, businesses are focusing more on developing a presence in this space. There is, and will continue to be, a market for the technically savvy and business oriented. If you're graduating with a marketing degree now, our advice is to read up on an explore the business value of social media. Every business sees the need, but very few have the in-house talent to develop these channels.
Another important trend to notice is the boom in job postings for non-profits. The number of postings for non-profits jumped an amazing 35% since January, representing over 5% of all jobs posted. These jobs, along with social and human services sector opportunities, provide an interesting view of the economy. With the rates of foreclosure and unemployment so high, the need for these services has grown. For new college grads, this may be an excellent opportunity to launch a career...in any field. With non-profits operating normally very thinly, employees often have opportunities to work in various aspects of the organization, providing a unique hands-on experience that is hard to find elsewhere. Additionally, with the federal support coming, the growth and impact of these organizations should be significant, providing great bullet points for your resume and talking points for future interviews.Here are some of the numbers...
Nonprofit job postings increased 35% from Jan to Feb
Sales, mkt, c/s, social services, medical, nursing represent about 25% of all job postings in new england
Decline in large companies hiring
75% of job postings for companies with fewer than 500 ee's
2/3 of job postings for fewer than 250 ee's
In Feb 74% of jobs were for full time openings
However the number of part time postings increased 25% from Jan to Feb
Nearly 35% more job openings posted in Feb than in Jan