Between technology, politics, the climate, and economics, the world feels like it’s changing faster than ever these days. Staying ahead of disruptions and opportunities is a constant challenge across all industries, but it’s especially important for staffing firms: people often turn to such agencies in times of uncertainty, so whether you’re a client or a candidate, it’s vital to be aware of some of the up-to-date trends.
First, just how profitable and vital is the staffing market? Does it have a future, or is it an outdated model? Thankfully, Staffing Industry Analysts say the market continues to see consistent growth:
“According to report estimates, the US temporary staffing market and the overall staffing market– which includes place and search– both grew 3% in 2016. SIA predicts that both temporary staffing and overall staffing will grow 3% in 2017 as well, with variances across occupational segments, from projected double-digit growth in travel nursing and education to declines in office/clerical and legal segments.”
As the report clarifies, that growth is averaged over many different fields – not all will see the same demand. Other factors can affect whether a given industry will grow or stagnate, such as the uncertain status of the Affordable Care Act on the healthcare field, the lack of qualified/educated candidates in IT or professional positions, or increasing restrictions on immigration visas affecting the agriculture labor pool. Overall the growth remains consistent, but how that will change in the 2018 remains to be seen. Many of these uncertainties are due to the new presidential administration, which has been viewed with both hope and fear from the industry:
“Do staffing firms see the Trump Administration as an obstacle or an opportunity? The jury’s still out; respondents were divided on the implications of Trump’s presidency for their firm’s success. Thirty-eight percent believe their firm will be better off in 2017 under President Trump’s administration, compared to 21 percent who believe their firm will be worse off.”
Either way, the state of the economy is currently stable, with unemployment at a consistently low 4%. That stability garners a host of issues the Staffing Industry has to contend with. A brief overview of these concerns can be found on Infojini:
“Major 2017 Challenges Facing Staffing Industry:
- Low unemployment rate in the US
- Shortage of Talent
- Restriction and unavailability of H1-B visa holders
- Hiring Millennials
- Veteran Hiring Strategy”
Ironically compared to other industries, the major issue for Staffing Agencies is that jobs abound; with unemployment so low, there’s simply a smaller population looking for temporary employment. Another problem is a shortage of talent, since that smaller populations is predominantly unskilled labor, making skilled candidates highly sought after. This increased demand can be difficult for clients, as it means they’ll need to increase their wages to attract talent. But for candidates it should be encouraging: if you have skilled experience, the field is yours to pick and choose from; if you don’t, there will likely be opportunities for training and experience in temp-to-perm positions so that agencies can fill those gaps. As John Rossheim at Monster.com puts it:
“Workers’ leverage is bringing them somewhat larger paychecks. After many years of economic recovery with relatively small hikes in pay, in 2018 the staffing industry and its clients likely will have to accelerate increases in compensation.”
So at present the Staffing Industry looks bright overall, with growth still occurring despite low unemployment. But how does the future look, years ahead? Technology continues to sprint forward, spreading into every kind of industry imaginable. The future, not just of staffing agencies but the world in general, is uncertain – soon automation may completely taking over certain occupations, while hopefully creating new ones in their wake:
“Automation could end up to 375 million jobs globally by 2030, McKinsey report says. Between 75 million and 375 million workers globally will have to switch occupational categories because of automations such as Al and robotics.”
The Staffing Industry will likely have to change substantially to accommodate these radical changes, but if there’s one industry that thrives off of radical change and the need for flexibility, it’s Staffing. It’s increasingly necessary and common for workers to switch occupations, even later in life, and staffing agencies can be a valuable tool for everyone as the economy evolves in the 21st century.
If you are in the Milwaukee area and want to start a new job, contact the team of (awesome) recruiters here at SITE Staffing. Whether you are looking for a temporary position or a full-time career, we have the network of employers and expert career coaches needed to help you make a change.
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