Fall 2018 survey shows 71 percent of companies are optimistic about job growth, at the same time 75 percent of employers characterize hiring as challenging.
Albany, NY – Capital Region employers expect to add jobs through the end of this year and maintain that momentum in 2019, even as it remains difficult to find qualified candidates to fill them. That’s according to the Fall 2018 Alaant Hiring Index released today by Alaant Workforce Solutions (Alaant), the Capital Region’s leading professional workforce services firm.
The survey, which captured responses from 88 human resource and hiring managers – split evenly between those from companies with more or less than 200 employees – was conducted between October 2 and 18 by Alaant, formerly Linium Recruiting.
Asked about their plans for hiring to finish 2018 and start the new year, 58 percent of employers said they expect to add jobs, down from 68 percent in the spring, but up from 55 percent a year ago, and 51 percent the previous year. Additionally, 71 percent of companies described themselves as either very optimistic or optimistic about their expectations for job growth over the next year.
At the same time, the task of filling a growing number of positions remains a significant issue: 75 percent of employers expect hiring to be either a significant challenge or challenging over the next six months, up from 60 percent in the spring and on par with 73 percent last year.
“We’re encouraged that Capital Region employers expect to finish the year on a high note and continue to grow in 2019. That speaks volumes about the strength and diversity of the region’s economy,” said Miriam Dushane, Managing Partner of Alaant Workforce Solutions. “Now, amid one of the tightest labor markets in history, companies must remain vigilant and proactive to put a workforce in place that will drive performance and build their bottom line.”
Two factors persist as the biggest challenges affecting the ability to hire: salary and wage demands, named by 36 percent of employers, and the skills gap, cited by 35 percent. Asked where they are finding qualified candidates, 71 percent said within the Capital Region, and 23 percent said a mix of within and outside the region, nearly identical from the spring survey.
And, in terms of where job opportunities are expanding the fastest, information technology (IT), at 28 percent, and health care, at 20 percent, are the fields showing the most growth. Customer service, sales and marketing accounted for 15 percent.
Launched in the fall of 2015, the Alaant Hiring Index is designed to give companies unique insight into the Capital Region’s job market, including the trends, challenges and opportunities associated with recruiting highly skilled employees. The next index will be released in spring 2019.
Alaant Workforce Solutions, formerly Linium Recruiting, was recognized by Forbes in both 2017 and 2018 on its exclusive list of America's Best Recruiting Firms. The company also received the prestigious Inavero's Best of Staffing Client Award® for excellence in client service in both 2017 and 2018, an honor bestowed on fewer than 2 percent of all staffing agencies in North America.
The full survey results can be found here