Rebounds in employment potential are apparent all over the country, but one of the biggest improvements in the hiring environment has been noted in the Midwest, especially Minnesota.
According to the Twin Cities Pioneer Press, job vacancies throughout Minnesota rose 18 percent in the final quarter of 2012, compared with data from the same period in 2011. The data also showed job openings for part-time work made up 39 percent of all available positions, down from 42 percent in the fourth quarter of 2011.
"We haven't seen this many job openings in the fourth quarter since well before the Great Recession started," said Katie Clark Sieben, commissioner of the state's Department of Employment and Economic Development, (DEED), adding that the figures provide further evidence that the labor market is "coming back strong."
The media outlet noted that the industries with the most open positions includes healthcare and social work, retail and trade, food service and sales. However, these positions, many of which were filled by temporary labor, saw a high rate of turnovers in the quarter.
In fact, part-time and temporary jobs made up 53 percent of all job openings in the final three months of 2012, while the median wage for such workers rose to $13.13 per hour compared with $12.26 in 2011.
Not only do the higher wages mean higher labor costs for those who bring on temporary workers, some Midwest firms that use temporary labor will have new regulations to contend with. According to The Associated Press, Illinois officials recently reminded businesses that if they use temporary staffing firms, it is their responsibility to determine if the staffing firms are licensed. If they don't they could face fines of $500 per day.
To avoid such high costs associated with labor, many companies are turning to performance-based labor options that drive productivity and provide financial incentives to their associates. This alternative to temporary staffing minimizes employee turnover and reduces labor cost.