Manufacturing Employment In April Will Continue March's Growth

March 27, 2007
While new-hire compensation is increasing at a slower pace, the number of unfilled positions has been reduced.

April hiring projections within the manufacturing sector will match the substantial growth seen in April 2006, as reported in the 2007 Employment Expectations report of the Leading Indicator of National Employment, a collaborative effort between the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) and the Rutgers University School of Management and Labor Relations.

The employment expectations index for April 2007 was nearly flat, dropping from 50.1 for March 2007 to 49.7 for April 2007. Slightly more manufactures expect to expand their workforce in April 2007 than in April 2006 (60.7% versus 57.6%).

The responses to the study reveal that new-hire compensation is rising much more slowly than it was a year ago. However recruiting difficulty is down in manufacturing.

The new-hire compensation index for March 2007 (5.5) is well below the levels of a year ago (11.) For the manufacturing-sector, the March 2007 exempt vacancy index (16.3) is below the March 2006 level (24.) The largest difference between 2007 and 2006 is the percentage of manufacturing-sector firms reporting increases in exempt vacancies. That percentage fell from 33.8% in March 2006 to 25.8% in March 2007.

Manufacturing-sector firms appear to be having more success in reducing the number of un-filled exempt positions. The non-exempt vacancy index dipped slightly from 17.4 in February 2007 to 16.2 in March 2007. The March 2007 non-exempt vacancy index (16.2) is well below the March 2006 index (23.8.) The recruiting difficulty index for March 2007 (24.2) is considerably below the level of March 2006 (29.4.)

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