Career Corner: A Monthly Executive Search Firm News Article Series.
The Job Market of the Future
July 1st, 2010
The job market is an ever changing entity that requires both employees and employers to adjust in order to build success. As we all know the economy took a turn for the worse in 2008 leaving behind a trail of false hopes and debt, but many people believe that our troubles may be coming to a quick end. Jobs are slowly coming back, but things will not be the same as they once were. As a result of the destruction caused by the “Great Recession” many companies have adjusted to survive the downturn, which has resulted in increased efficiency. Also, older people, that might have been retired already if this was 20 years ago, are continuing to work and be promoted in their current companies. This is leaving fewer job openings for the generations to come.
The recovery of the economy has still had a positive impact on the first quarter of 2010 and will continue to do so into the future. The National Association for Business Economics conducted a survey that concluded that 37 percent of the companies interviewed said that they would be hiring new employees in the next 6 months. These results on top of the increase in jobs that we have already seen in the first 3 months of 2010 are a great sign for the economy. Another great sign for job seekers is that 25 percent of the employers that were surveyed said that they would be increasing the salaries for these employees. This is a great sign for things to come, but some drastic changes have already taken place in the market that will leave job seekers scratching their heads.
One of the first big changes that have already taken place in the market place is the increase in efficiency by companies that have survived the recession. The downturn that took place in 2008 forced many employers to cut back the “fat” in their companies’. People who were performing only satisfactory in their positions were usually the first to go so that the company could spend its money on the most efficient employees. As a result, the recession has taught many employers how to run their companies’ as efficiently as possible, and this is something that they will continue to do into the future.
Improvements in technology have also helped to increase the efficiency of companies that at one time might have just been scraping by. Recently we have seen technology that has helped to increase global communication, international brand awareness, as well as software that will help an individual manage a large number of clients that at one time might not have been possible. In short, the increase in productivity that employers were forced to achieve, as well as the increases that have been made in the technology field have allowed fewer employees to manage the same amount of work.
Another huge factor that is having an effect on the job market is the number of workers who are postponing retirement so that they can continue to work. According to a survey conducted by the Rand Corporation, the number of people who will continue to work between the ages of 65 to 75 increased by 47 percent from the 1990s until the present. This will have a positive effect on the social security system, but will not quite have the same effect on the job market. The impact that this will have on jobs will trickle down the entire chain of command for every company. As the older generation decides to work longer, there will be no room for the younger generations to advance, which will then prevent college graduates from finding an entry level position. A study that was conducted showed that companies will be hiring 7 percent fewer new graduates in 2010 than they did a year ago.
The changes that have already been made in the job world will start to make their presence known in several different ways. Although job growth is returning to the United States it will not be at the levels that were seen in 2007, right before the recession began. This is in large part due to the increase in efficiency of companies and the increase in the average age of the workforce. Another important change that will take place in the job market is the type of jobs that are available. A lot of the manufacturing jobs that were so prevalent before the recession, will not be returning for domestic workers. This is mainly due to companies’ ability to easily find cheaper labor overseas. Also, the increase in the average age of workers, due to the ability of workers over the age of 65 to continue to work, will force the younger generation to find alternative forms of employment. As a result, there will be an increase in small start-up companies as well as companies that provide consulting, as the younger generations try to find a way to make a living.