May full-time job postings on were up 44% from April with over 1.2 million jobs posted on the Indeed jobs board compared to 843,000 in April. Every major occupational group experienced growth in the month of May as shown in the scatterplot below. Most notably, military and personal care occupational groups were up 111% and 79% respectively.
Was May a True Rebound?
A job growth number of 44% always sounds impressive. But in this case, the job postings number was starting from the abyss of April. April job postings were horrendous. As May was up in every category, April was also down in every category. Nevertheless the May numbers were impressive as a strong signal that the labor market is at least starting a recovery. For example, May numbers were up 4% over March which was a hybrid month for labor market activity with a partial month shutdown.
The Growth of the COVID-19 Occupation
As with any crisis, there are emerging categories that we need to pay attention to. A simple search on COVID-19 job titles showed over 2,000 jobs directly related to COVID-19, of which two-thirds are in non-healthcare fields across virtually every occupational group. For example:
- Reset merchandiser
- Program manager
- Quality assurance coordinator
- Sales agent for test kits
Bloomberg recently posted an article that suggests even more COVID-19 job categories such as contact tracer, thermal scanner, and cart wiper.
Is Work at Home Here to Stay?
Sociologists love the fact that we had this great forced experiment called “stay at home”. The workforce is very adaptable and we actually learned we could work effectively from home and some even liked it. Hiring organizations now must address the fact that people are used to working from home and may find that to be a desirable permanent change. A search of job posting snippets found that “work from home” is of increasing importance even after the stay-at-home mandate has been relaxed.
Learn More From the On-Demand Webinar
We had nearly 100 participants for the June 4 webinar. Our next monthly webinar will be July 9 and will focus on the June jobs activity. In addition, we have published a 20 minute on-demand webinar for the May activity which you can view at your convenience.