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139 Monthly Lab. Rev. 1 (2016)

handle is hein.journals/month139 and id is 1 raw text is: 
Monthly Labor Review


JANUARY 2016

Which industries need workers? Exploring differences in

labor market activity

Using data from the Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey, this article takes a unique, simultaneous look at job
openings, hires, and separations for individual industries and then categorizes industries as having high or low job
openings and high or low hires. Studying the data items in relation to each other helps point out the differences among
industries: some have high turnover, some have low turnover, some easilyfind the workers they need and hence have
few job openings at the end of the month, and some need more workers than they canfind The author also includes fill
rates and churn rates by industry and looks briefly at earnings by industry. The analysis of labor turnover patterns by
industry may prove useful to jobseekers and career changers as well as employers.

Where should new graduates look for jobs? What about career changers? In what direction should
career counselors and job placement programs direct clients? Which statistics can government officials
use to help determine how to stimulate job growth? How do employers know if their turnover and
worker demands are typical? Industries differ in employee turnover patterns, demand for workers, and
ability to hire the workers they need. Understanding the labor turnover characteristics of the different
industries may help jobseekers, those assisting them, employers, and government officials better focus
their efforts.
   Each data element in the Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS)-job openings, hires,
and separations-provides information about the labor market. However, when all three data elements
are studied together, an even more informative picture emerges. The job openings data tell us about the
unmet demand for workers; the hires and separations data provide information about the flow of labor.
Industries with high turnover and low job openings, such as construction, are easily able to hire the
workers they need. But industries with high turnover and high job openings, such as professional and
business services, still have open jobs at the end of the month despite their hiring efforts during the
month. Those industries with consistently moderate turnover and high unmet demand for labor, such as
health care, may be a good option for career changers and students selecting a major, and officials who
develop training programs and guide people into them can benefit from knowing which industries these
are. Hence, analyzing the demand for and flow of workers by industry could prove helpful both to
people looking for work and to those trying to help or hire them.


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