The Conference Board Help Wanted OnLine® (HWOL)

This data series provides timely monthly measures of labor demand (advertised vacancies) at the national, regional, state, and metropolitan area levels.

Online Job Ads Increased 1,200 in January

31 Jan. 2018

Online Job Ads Increased 1,200 in January

  • January was essentially unchanged, following a December increase
  • States and MSAs saw little movement
  • Note: January data incorporates updated seasonal adjustment factors

Download the complimentary National Historical Table.

Online advertised vacancies increased 1,200 to 4,903,300 in January, according to The Conference Board Help Wanted OnLine® (HWOL) Data Series,released today. The December Supply/Demand rate stands at 1.34 unemployed for each advertised vacancy, with a total of 1.7 million more unemployed workers than the number of advertised vacancies. The number of unemployed was approximately 6.6 million in December.

The Professional occupational category saw changes in Education, Training, and Library (-60.4), Computer and mathematical science (23.2) and Healthcare practitioners and technical (-12.9). The Services/Production occupational category saw gains in Sales and related (30.8), Transportation (10.7), and  Installation, maintenance, and repair (8.1).

NOTE: Recently, the HWOL Data Series has experienced a declining trend in the number of online job ads that may not reflect broader trends in the U.S. labor market. Based on changes in how job postings appear online, The Conference Board is reviewing its HWOL methodology to ensure accuracy and alignment with market trends.

REGIONAL AND STATE HIGHLIGHTS

  • Among the largest States, 6 increased and 14 decreased
  • Among the 50 States, 28 increased, 21 declined, and 1 was constant

January Changes for States

In January, online labor demand grew in 28 States, declined in 21 State, and was constant in 1 State. Two regions experienced increases and two experienced decreases.

The Northeast increased 5,100 in January (Table A). New York increased 4,100 to 298,600. New Jersey decreased 6,600 to 150,800. Massachusetts decreased 1,900 to 140,200. Pennsylvania increased 8,700 to 214,100. In the smaller States, Connecticut decreased 2,600 to 73,100. New Hampshire decreased 2,100 to 24,000 and Maine increased 1,400 to 21,000. Rhode Island increased 800 to 14,900 and Vermont grew 1,200 to 11,500 (Table 3).

The West increased 13,400 in January. California increased 8,700 to 568,300 and Colorado decreased 1,600 to 127,000. Washington decreased 1,600 to 143,100. Arizona increased 300 to 95,400. Among the smaller States in theWest, Oregon increased 1,500 to 77,100. Utah increased 4,600 to 53,000. Nevada increased 1,200 to 45,100. Idaho grew 3,200 to 24,300 and New Mexico increased 1,400 to 26,100. Montana fell 400 to 20,900 and Hawaii increased 400 to 21,500.

The Midwest experienced a decrease of 7,400 in January. Illinois fell 12,100 to 189,800 and Michigan decreased 3,500 to 159,800. Missouri decreased 2,500 to 90,900 and Ohio increased 2,500 to 168,500. Minnesota decreased 3,900 to 136,200 and Wisconsin increased 5,900 to 111,100. Among the smaller States in the region, Indiana increased 300 to 86,200 and Iowa increased 800 to 62,000. Nebraska grew 300 to 31,100 and South Dakota increased 600 to 14,800. Kansas decreased 200 to 37,600.

The South decreased 4,500 in January. Among the larger States in the region, Texas decreased 7,700 to 336,000. Florida decreased 2,900 to 261,600. North Carolina decreased 2,200 to 137,100. Georgia decreased 800 to 151,900. Virginia fell 700 to 146,500. Maryland decreased 1,200 to 94,400. Among the smaller States, Tennessee increased 1,500 to 81,100 and South Carolina decreased 600 to 61,600. Alabama grew 3,200 to 52,400. Kentucky remained constant at 45,600 and Oklahoma increased 3,700 to 41,500. Louisiana increased 1,000 to 41,300 and Delaware increased 1,200 to 16,000.

Supply/Demand Rates: Help Wanted OnLine calculates Supply/Demand rates for the 50 States (Table 4). The data are for December 2017, the latest month for which State unemployment figures are available.

There were 10 States in which the number of advertised vacancies exceeded the number of unemployed: Hawaii (0.64), North Dakota (0.67), Minnesota (0.67), Colorado (0.72), New Hampshire (0.75), Iowa (0.77), Nebraska (0.90), Massachusetts (0.90), Wisconsin (0.91), and Vermont (0.95). The States with the highest Supply/Demand rates were Louisiana (2.42), New Mexico (2.27), West Virginia (2.21), and Mississippi (2.11) which had more than two unemployed workers for every job opening. 

Please note that the Supply/Demand rate only provides a measure of relative tightness of the individual State labor markets and does not suggest that the occupations of the unemployed directly align with the occupations of the advertised vacancies.

METRO AREA HIGHLIGHTS

  • In January, ten of the 20 largest metro areas rose and ten declined
  • Among the 52 metro areas, 19 rose, 29 declined, and 4 were constant (See pdf Table 5)

Metro Area Changes

In January, labor demand rose in 19 metro areas, declined in 29 and 4 remained constant. The MSAs with the largest changes in each of the regions were: Chicago (-10,300) and Minneapolis-St. Paul (-2,100) in the Midwest; Los Angeles (4,800) and Phoenix (2,700) in the West; Houston (-2,700) and Dallas (-2,500) in the South; and Pittsburgh (3,800) and New York (-3,700) in the Northeast (See Table B and Table 5).

The West increased 13,400 in January. San Francisco increased 2,700 to 113,800. Los Angeles increased 4,800 to 170,700. Denver increased 300 to 74,300 and San Jose grew 1,900 to 58,800. Seattle-Tacoma fell 1,200 to 92,800 and Phoenix increased 2,700 to 69,700. Riverside increased 1,000 to 33,500. Portland grew 900 to 49,200. Sacramento increased 1,000 at 30,700 and Salt Lake City increased 2,500 to 28,300. Honolulu grew 700 at 15,100 and Las Vegas grew 500 to 28,400.

The South decreased 4,500 in January. Houston decreased 2,700 to 72,100 and Austin decreased 700 to 41,400. Miami increased 900 to 72,300 and Washington, DC increased 300 to 142,900. Dallas fell 2,500 to 108,500 and Atlanta decreased 700 to 100,500. Orlando decreased 200 to 37,500. Charlotte decreased 100 to 44,300. Tampa remained constant at 43,900 and Baltimore increased 100 to 51,800. San Antonio grew 800 to 30,000. Nashville remained constant at 34,700. New Orleans fell 600 to 15,900 and Birmingham increased 800 to 14,700. Louisville remained constant at 17,200.

The Northeast increased 5,100 in January. New York decreased 3,700 to 296,600 and Pittsburgh increased 3,800 to 45,700. Philadelphia increased 2,700 to 100,900. Boston fell 1,000 to 108,400. Providence increased 800 to 20,500. Buffalo increased 300 to 18,700. Hartford fell 200 to 28,100 and Rochester increased 600 to 15,900.

The Midwest experienced a decrease of 7,400 in January. Chicago decreased 10,300 to 149,600 and Minneapolis-St. Paul decreased 2,100 to 95,900. Detroit decreased 600 to 75,000 and St. Louis fell 400 to 46,900. Indianapolis remained constant at 33,400. Columbus increased 1,200 to 37,700 and Cincinnati decreased 300 to 36,200. Kansas City decreased 2,000 to 38,200 and Cleveland decreased 400 to 30,800. Milwaukee increased 1,300 to 32,700.

The number of postings does not, however, tell the entire story. A crucial factor is how many unemployed people are seeking jobs and how much competition there is for the jobs that are available. The Conference Board HWOL’s Supply/Demand rate relates the number of unemployed workers to the number of advertised vacancies. Based on November’s data (the latest available unemployment data for metro areas), 12 major metro areas saw more job openings than unemployed workers: San Jose (S/D rate of 0.54), Minneapolis-St. Paul (0.60), Honolulu (0.65), Denver (0.69), San Francisco (0.69), Salt Lake City (0.80), Austin (0.82), Nashville (0.86), Boston (0.87), Washington, DC (0.91), Milwaukee (0.91), and Seattle-Tacoma (0.93). (Table 6). Other favorable markets for job-seekers included Kansas City (1.06) and San Diego (1.08).

In contrast, unemployed workers face great competition for each advertised position in Riverside (over 2 unemployed for every opening) as well as Houston and Las Vegas (over 2 unemployed for every opening). In 49 of the 52 metro areas, however, there are now fewer than 2 unemployed per advertised opening. (See Table 6 for complete metro area Supply/Demand rates.)

OCCUPATIONAL HIGHLIGHTS

  • In January, seven of the largest ten online occupational categories posted increases and three declined (See pdf Table C)

Occupational Changes for the Month of January

In January, seven of the largest ten online occupational categories posted increases and three declined.

Education, training, and library ads decreased 60,400 to 167,900. The supply/demand rate lies at 1.19, i.e. over 1 unemployed job-seeker for every advertised available opening (see Table C and Table 7).

Computer and mathematical ads increased 23,200 to 524,400. The supply/demand rate lies at 0.24, i.e. 4 advertised opening per unemployed job-seeker.

Business ads increased 11,300 to 299,100. The supply/demand rate lies at 0.80, i.e. 1 advertised opening per unemployed job-seeker.

Healthcare practitioners and technical ads decreased 12,900 to 606,700. The supply/demand rate lies at 0.27, i.e. 3 advertised opening per unemployed job-seeker.

Sales and related ads increased 30,800 to 476,900. The supply/demand rate lies at 1.47, i.e. over 1 unemployed job-seeker for every advertised available opening.

Transportation ads increased 10,700 to 392,700. The supply/demand rate lies at 1.38, i.e. over 1 unemployed job-seeker for every advertised available opening.

Installation, maintenance, and repair ads increased 8,100 to 204,500. The supply/demand rate lies at 0.93, i.e. 1 unemployed job-seeker for every advertised available opening.

PROGRAM NOTES

HWOL 2017 Annual Revision

With the February 2017 press release, the HWOL program has incorporated its annual revision, which helps ensure the accuracy and consistency of the HWOL time series. This year’s annual revision includes updates to the job board coverage, a revision of the historical data from May 2005 forward, an update of the Metropolitan Statistical area definitions to 2015 Office of Management and Budget (OMB) county-based MSA definitions, and the annual update of the seasonal adjustment factors.

Special Note

Recently, the HWOL Data Series has experienced a declining trend in the number of online job ads that may not reflect broader trends in the U.S. labor market. Based on changes in how job postings appear online, The Conference Board is reviewing its HWOL methodology to ensure accuracy and alignment with market trends.

HWOL available on Haver Analytics

Over 3,000 of the key HWOL press release time series are exclusively available on Haver Analytics. The available time series include the geographic and occupational series for levels and rates for both Total Ads and New Ads. In addition to the seasonally adjusted series, many of the unadjusted series are also available. The geographic detail includes: U.S., 9 Regions, 50 States, 52 MSAs (largest metro areas). The occupational detail includes: U.S. (2-digit SOC), States (1-digit SOC) and MSAs (1-digit SOC).

For more information about the Help Wanted OnLine database delivered via Haver Analytics, please email sales@haver.com or navigate to http://www.haver.com/contact.html. For HWOL data for detailed geographic areas and occupations not in the press release, please contact Jeanne.Shu@conference-board.org.

__________________________________________________________________________

The Conference Board Help Wanted OnLine®Data Series (HWOL) measures the number of new, first-time online jobs and jobs reposted from the previous month for over 16,000 Internet job boards, corporate boards and smaller job sites that serve niche markets and smaller geographic areas.

Like The Conference Board’s long-running Help Wanted Advertising Index of print ads (which was published for over 55 years and discontinued in July 2008), the HWOL series measures help wanted advertising, i.e. labor demand. The HWOL data series began in May 2005. With the September 2008 release, HWOL began providing seasonally adjusted data for the U.S., the nine Census regions and the 50 States. Seasonally adjusted data for occupations were provided beginning with the May 2009 release, and seasonally adjusted data for the 52 largest metropolitan areas began with the February 2012 release.

People using this data are urged to review the information on the database and methodology available on The Conference Board website and contact us with questions and comments. Background information and technical notes and discussion of revisions to the series are available at: http://www.conference-board.org/data/helpwantedonline.cfm.

Additional information on the Bureau of Labor Statistics data used in this release can be found on the BLS website, www.bls.gov.

The Conference Board

The Conference Board is a global, independent business membershipand research association working in the public interest. Our mission is unique: To provide the world’s leading organizationswith the practical knowledge they need to improve their performance and better serve society. The Conference Board is a non-advocacy, not-for-profit entity holding 501 (c) (3) tax-exempt status in the United States.

WANTED Analytics, a CEB Company

WANTED is a leading supplier of real-time business intelligence solutions for the talent marketplace. Using technology to gather data from corporate career sites and online job boards, WANTED builds products to help our users make better human capital decisions faster. Users of our products include corporate human resources departments, market analysts and employment services firms as well as the federal, state and local labor market analysts that use HWOL. For more information, please visit: www.wantedanalytics.com.

HAVER ANALYTICS®

Haver Analytics is the premier provider of time series data for the Global Strategy and Research community. Haver Analytics was founded in 1978 as a consulting firm and today provides the highest quality data and software for industry professionals. Haver provides products and services to clients in financial services, government, academia and various industry groups from consulting to manufacturing. From more information please see: http://www.haver.com/contact.html.

Release Dates for 2018
March 7, 2018
April 4, 2018
May 2, 2018
May 30, 2018
July 2, 2017
August 1, 2018
September 5, 2018
October 3, 2018
October 31, 2018
December 5, 2018

The next release is Wednesday, March 7 at 10 AM.

For further information contact:

Carol Courter
1 212 339 0232
carol.courter@conference-board.org

THESE DATA ARE FOR ANALYSIS PURPOSES ONLY. NOT FOR REDISTRIBUTION, PUBLISHING, DATABASING, OR PUBLIC POSTING WITHOUT EXPRESS WRITTEN PERMISSION.

Member Exclusive
The Conference Board Help Wanted Online® Members Login
Download related PDFs

Press Release
With graph and summary table

National Historical Table (Complimentary)

Technical Notes
Underlying detail, diffusion indexes, components, contributions and graphs