Dramatic Shifts in Job Postings as Employers Address COVID-19 Impacts

By on April 9, 2020
Dramatic Shifts in Job Postings as Employers Address COVID-19 Impacts

Job postings reveal what employers need now and into the future. Unlike many other sources of labor market data, job posting information is available in near real time, with only a few day’s delay.

Comparing the last week of March 2020 to the first week of March provides insights into the dramatic shifts in positions needed by employers. Many employers are delaying, reducing or halting new staff hires. Some are experiencing increased need for information technology resources and assets. And specific industries need to hire to address the new or increased demands caused by the coronavirus.

As you would expect, the number of health care job postings increased between the week of March 2-8 and March 23-29. Registered nurses, critical care nurses, and nurse practitioners are in high demand nationwide and in the St. Louis area. Demand has also increased for most other health care occupations.

Top Health Care Job Postings by Occupation for the St. Louis MSA

The demand for retail sales associates, sales representatives, retail store managers, and food service occupations have all been significantly impacted downward as workers in these non-essential businesses are unable to perform their jobs or have reduced access to current and prospective clients. Other St. Louis area occupations involved with the logistics of delivering essential products, including truck drivers and warehouse workers, have seen increases in demand. Software developers and user interface designers have also seen increases in demand to address the shift to on-line work and services.

Top Job Postings by Occupation for the St. Louis MSA

BJC Healthcare and the National Geospatial Intelligence Agency have seen big increases in the number of their job postings from the first week of March to the last week of March. Great Clips is an interesting outlier here (I guess they are preparing for a high demand for haircuts after the stay-at-home orders end).

St. Louis MSA Employers with the Most Job Openings

Nationally, Amazon (especially) and grocery and dollar stores have increased staffing needs. What is also telling are the national retailers who have dropped out of this “top 15” list from the first week of March: Hibbett Sports, TJX Companies, Whole Foods Market, Macy’s, Best Buy, and Pilot Flying J. Obviously e-commerce and groceries in general are doing well, but it will be interesting to see what happens to department stores and other retailers who rely heavily on foot traffic for their sales volume.

Employers with the Most Job Openings Nationwide

Overall, all industries have seen a decline in the number of job postings from the beginning to the end of March. Especially impacted are accommodation and food services; arts, entertainment and recreation; wholesale trade; and agriculture. Future job posting data will tell us which industries are coming back the quickest, and which may struggle with a recovery.

Job Postings by Industry Nationwide

When there are less than 100 data points in a category, the margin of error should be considered fairly high. So it’s best to look at those charts as showing if there is a significant increase, significant decrease, or if job postings are remaining about the same.

About Richard Schumacher

Richard Schumacher is the technology manager for the Workforce Solutions Group of St. Louis Community College. He connects, designs, and applies technology to meet business user needs with eLearning, training, web content, instructional design, IT system, and performance improvement solutions. Richard has held various Microsoft Certifications since 1993. Learn more about Richard by following him: LinkedIn - Twitter - Articles - Email

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