Monday, August 27, 2007

Top 10 Most Difficult Jobs to Fill Include Many in the Hourly Realm

The one glaring fact that stands out most when looking at this year’s Manpower index of most difficult jobs to fill is that the majority of them are hourly positions and most do not require a 4 year college degree. Sales people lead off the list for the second year in a row. From what we hear in Pittsburgh this runs in all sales categories from entry level retail up to sales Engineers and Pharmaceuticals. Also mirroring what we see in Pittsburgh are the dire need for qualified auto mechanics. Many dealers are in a position to limit their service hours because they cannot find enough mechanics to handle the workload they are seeing in their shops.
A large part of the reason for this national phenomena is the same as we are seeing here as well. The start of the Baby Boomers reaching retirement age. Too many of our young workers have been brought up in a go to college or you’ll die mentality. Not enough have given thought to a career in what used to be considered either dirty or menial work that didn’t pay well. All of those old perceptions are long gone.

Here is the article from Manpower as posted on MarketWatch:

SAN FRANCISCO (MarketWatch) -- Sales representatives, teachers and mechanics are the top three jobs for which employers are struggling to find workers, according to a survey released Thursday by Manpower Inc.

Overall, 41% of firms surveyed said they're struggling to find qualified workers for
at least one position, according to the survey of 2,400 U.S. firms.
The survey asked each company, "Are you having difficulty filling jobs due to
lack of available talent?" If they said yes, the survey asked, "What is the one job you are having the most difficulty filling?"

Sales representatives topped the list. That category includes retail sales and
business-to-business sales, but not telemarketers, said Melanie Holmes, vice
president of corporate affairs at Manpower, in a telephone interview.
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics "projects that an additional 736,000 retail
sales people and an additional 187,000 sales representatives are going to be
required by 2014," she said.
Teachers, the No. 2 job most in need of filling in the survey, includes elementary
and post-secondary teachers, she said, noting the BLS projects an additional
need for 524,000 post-secondary teachers and 265,000 elementary-school
teachers by 2014.
Third on the list, mechanics, including automotive service technicians, diesel
service technicians, small engine mechanics, aircraft and avionics equipment
mechanics and industrial machinery repair. Overall, among mechanics, "more people are retiring than replacement workers are coming in and doing apprenticeships and doing the training they need," she said.

Demand driven partly by lack of skills

Changes in the labor pool are affecting firms' ability to find workers, Holmes said.
"Demographics are not in employers' favor," she said. "Because of retiring baby
boomers and the fact that birth rates are not keeping up with those that are

Another reason: Job seekers lack sought-after skills. "There might be people, but
they don't have the skills that are necessary," Holmes said.
"As with many things these days, the world of work changes so quickly and so
dramatically. If we're not very careful to keep our skills up-to-date as an individual, and as an employer if I'm not working to keep my workforce's skills up-to-date, people can become redundant," she said.

"The message is not just for people looking for jobs, but for all of us: We need to
keep our skills up-to-date [and] pay attention to the changing world of work,"
Holmes said. "We need to be very careful to take charge of our own careers and
not expect somebody else to hand-feed us what we need. We need to look
around and get the training or experience that we need to keep up."

Nurses drop off Top 10 list

Sales representatives topped the list of hardest-to-fill jobs for the second year in
a row, while teachers and mechanics replaced engineers and nurses/health-care
workers in the second- and third-place positions this year, according to the
survey. But "even though some jobs fell off the top 10 list, demand for these positions still exists," said Jonas Prising, president of Manpower North America, in a press release.

Here's the Top 10 list:
1. Sales representative
2. Teacher
3. Mechanic
4. Technician
5. Management/executive
6. Truck driver
7. Driver/delivery
8. Accountant
9. Laborer
10. Machine operator

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Monster Online Ad Index for Pittsburgh Declines First Time Since January

Monster’s monthly index of online recruitment demand declined slightly for the first time since January for the Pittsburgh region. The index is used as a measure of recruitment activity and is leading indicator of job demand in a market. Declines this time of year are noted to be normal as retail and many other industries have not yet begun their fall recruitment campaigns and schools are still out for the summer. Year over year demand is up strongly, however, as our the Pittsburgh job market recovers from the heavy job losses by major employers like US Airways between 2002 and 2005. Here is the report:

Online Job Demand in Pittsburgh Eases Slightly in
July, According to the Monster Local Employment Index

PITTSBURGH, August 16, 2007 – The Monster Local Employment Index for
Pittsburgh dipped two points to a level of 115 in July, as gains in healthcare demand
were not enough to stem a general summer slowdown in online recruitment activity.
Nevertheless, Pittsburgh remains one of the strongest growth markets in the nation
when comparing year-over-year online recruitment trends, reflecting historically tight
labor market conditions and sustained print-to-online migration of the help-wanted
advertising market.

The latest Index findings demonstrate soaring recruitment demand in the healthcare
sector, which is struggling with supply shortages in certain key occupations such as
nursing. Both the healthcare practitioners and technical; and healthcare support
categories edged up last month, defying seasonal expectations. It is likely that these
recent upward trends in the healthcare categories reflect employer efforts to expand
the online visibility of long-standing, as opposed to newly created, specialized healthcare
openings in an already tight job market.
The business and professional service segment also maintained a generally strong
growth pace when accounting for seasonality. The market’s largest occupational
categories such as management; and business and financial operations edged down only
slightly from historical highs. Meanwhile, the computer and mathematical category
continued growing at a double digit annual pace, indicating high demand for IT
professionals. Still, food preparation and serving related remained the fastest growth
category year-over-year while military specific declined the most.
In all, two occupational categories rose in July, while 15 declined and two were

Friday, August 17, 2007

City County Career Day Looming Large For September

With the job market in Pittsburgh turning a corner this year, what is being billed as the largest job fair in Pittsburgh history is taking shape for September 18th at the convention center in downtown Pittsburgh from 10AM to 3PM. Over 250 companies are expected to attend. The event is a partnership between the City of Pittsburgh, Allegheny County, PA CareerLink, the Builder’s Guild, the Pittsburgh Partnership, the Three Rivers Workforce Investment Board and the Sports and Exhibition Authority. The attendance goal is over 4,000 job seekers. This event is focusing on the building trades with multiple large construction projects slated to be under way in the next 2 years. There is now worry that the number of current workers available for these projects may not meet the demand. The Employment Guide is partnering to produce the event guide that will be distributed in The Employment Guide the full week before the event as well as at the event itself. This event guide will list many of the companies attending as well as the types of positions they are looking to fill.

If you are a potential company that would like to attend this event, please contact the PA CareerLink Pittsburgh office for more information. The cost for companies to attend has been kept to a minimum due to funding from the various partners and special cooperation by the Sports and Exhibition Authority. For job seekers, attendance is free with no pre-registration needed.

Seminars on many topics will be held throughout the day, including apprenticeship programs for all of the local building trade unions.

Although the focus of the event is on the building trades, it is by no means limited to that area. Companies from all walks of life will be found eagerly looking for a chance to speak with qualified job seekers. Many interviews will be held on the spot. Never have so many resources been available under one roof before. Stay tuned for more information as the event draws closer.

Friday, August 10, 2007

July sees a record Employment Index for the Pittsburgh Region

For the 5th straight month the demand for workers in Pittsburgh has increased, according to the July Monster Index that measures online activity for recruitment by employers by category. Blue collar occupations again lead the way in strength, with a rebound seen in white collar occupations as well. With the major building projects looming in the Pittsburgh region over the next two years the labor market could become the brightest we have seen since before September 11th. Here is the report:

Online Job Demand in Pittsburgh Edges Higher in June, According to the Monster Local Employment Index

PITTSBURGH, July 19, 2007 – The Monster Local Employment Index for Pittsburgh
climbed one point in June, extending a five-month upward growth trend in online job
availability. The up-tick last month came in defiance of seasonal expectations and pushed
the Index for Pittsburgh’s annual growth rate up to 15 percent, the highest since its
inception, reflecting further tightening in local job market conditions and solid demand
for labor.
Results for Pittsburgh over the past 13 months are as follows:

The healthcare and blue-collar work segments continue to drive the overall Index for
Pittsburgh. Installation, maintenance, and repair registered the sharpest rate of increase
in June, suggesting greater demand for workers in assorted trades. Although more
moderate, the growth trends in other blue-collar categories such as transportation and
material moving; production; and construction are similarly positive, despite reports of
continued layoffs in the goods producing sector.
Meanwhile, the white-collar segment rebounded from softer recruitment activity
recorded in May. The healthcare practitioners and technical category rose sharply,
leading all categories in the segment. Computer and mathematical (IT); architecture and
engineering; and life, physical, and social science, the segment’s weakest categories in
May, all experienced increases in online job demand and are once again at elevated
levels. In contrast, the legal category was the Index’s weakest from an over-the-year
perspective, with fewer opportunities now than in June 2006.
In total, 12 occupational categories rose in June, while six declined and one was

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Pittsburgh’s Hottest Employer for the Week of 8/6/2007

This week’s hottest employer, based on severity of need or number of needs is AT Systems, a Garda Company. AT Systems, one of America’s largest and fastest growing cash logistics companies, is looking for armored driver / messenger applicants and also a cash vault processing teller (teller experience is required). Extensive background checks and pre-employment drug screens are required. For details on these positions and infoermation on how you can apply, pick up this week’s edition of The Employment Guide, or visit

Truly a 'Burgh Thing!

Truly a 'Burgh Thing!
by Randy Bish, Pittsburgh Tribune Review

Job News and Information for Job Seekers and Recruiters

Job News and Information for Job Seekers and Recruiters