Human Resources

Grand Rapids ranks No. 3 in US for spring jobs outlook

March 12, 2015
TAGS jobs / Manpower
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Grand Rapids-Wyoming job market among strongest in nation
ManpowerGroup is a workforce services company. Photo via

Employers in the Grand Rapids market have the third-best outlook in the country on hiring this spring.

Manpower, an employee recruiting company based in Milwaukee, said this week that the Grand Rapids-Wyoming metropolitan region has the No. 3 job outlook in the nation out of the 100 largest metropolitan statistical areas, or MSAs.

The ranking is based on the results from Manpower's “Employment Outlook Survey” for the second quarter of the 2015 fiscal year.

Grand Rapids market

Employers in the Grand Rapids market overall anticipate increasing their hiring plans from April through June, according to the Manpower outlook.

Of the employers surveyed, 30 percent plan to increase their staff levels and roughly 66 percent expect to maintain staff levels.

When combined with one percent of employers anticipating a decrease in staff levels and three percent remaining uncertain, the “net employment outlook” for the second quarter is 29 percent.

Jill Momber, VP and regional director at Manpower, said the survey results indicate employers in market are slightly more confident about hiring plans compared to the first quarter, when the net employment outlook was 26 percent.

Last spring, the market's net employment outlook was 22 percent.

Grand Rapids industries

A number of West Michigan industries reported strong job outlooks for upcoming quarter: construction; durable goods manufacturing; transportation and utilities; wholesale and retail trade; information, professional and business services; education and health services; and leisure and hospitality.

Several industries reported that they’ll remain relatively unchanged in terms of hiring: financial activities; government; and non-durable goods manufacturing.

State outlook

At the state level, 27 percent of Michigan employers interviewed anticipate hiring more employees during the second quarter and 67 percent plan to maintain their staff levels.

When offset by two percent of companies expecting to decrease staff levels and four percent of employers not certain about their hiring plans, the net employment outlook for the state is 25 percent.

The state net employment outlook for the upcoming quarter is up five percent from 20 percent the previous quarter and up six percent from 19 percent for last spring.

National outlook

The net employment outlook across the nation is at 16 percent, accounting for seasonal variations.

Out of roughly 18,000 U.S. employers, 22 percent plan on increasing staff levels and 72 percent anticipate remaining unchanged in their hiring plans, while four percent plan on reducing their payroll.

The national net employment outlook matches the 16 percent for the previous quarter and is up three percent from 13 percent for last spring.

The national jobs outlook is at its highest since the first quarter employment outlook in 2008, which was also at 16 percent, seasonally adjusted.

Jonas Prising, CEO of ManpowerGroup, said employers across the nation have been experiencing incremental increases in demand for goods and services for some time, despite the uncertainty in global economies.

“Although growth remains modest, employers believe it is sustainable and that confidence is reflected in their hiring plans,” Prising said. “We’re seeing the rising tide of the economy extend broadly across geographies and sectors, which is positively impacting the labor market.”  

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