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The various factors affecting hiring are constantly changing and hiring personnel need to stay on top of the latest information in order to do their job.

This spring, there are a number of key data trends that hiring managers need to be aware of. These data trends are largely related to the current economic environment and political climate.

Job openings everywhere

In March, the Bureau of Labor Statistics announced there were about 6.2 million job openings in the United States, up from 5.6 million in March 2016.

Businesses can’t locate people with the proper abilities to fill their open positions, which has stunted growth in the economy. The National Federation of Independent Business said 45 percent of small companies were not able locate qualified applicants to fill open positions and 60 percent of all companies have positions that have been vacant for 12 weeks or longer, costing them $800,000 each year in lost productivity and other costs.

In our current labor market, some businesses are focusing more on upskilling their current workforce. This not only addresses the lack of available talent, it also addresses skills becoming less relevant over time as technology continues to disrupt every part of every business. When teams are properly trained, businesses can save tens of thousands of dollars each year and see a double-digit boost in productivity.

Cost uncertainty

Whether you’re a supporter of President Donald Trump or not you have to admit: He’s pretty unpredictable. That unpredictability from a policy viewpoint translates to cost uncertainty for businesses.

Under the current administration, deregulation has been a priority. The loosening of labor regulations has a significant effect of costs, impacting companies’ capacity to hire new employees. While you might think fewer regulations leads to lower costs, a recent survey by Kronos found over half of companies surveyed reported regulatory change costs up to $100,000 on average. Greater than two-thirds of respondents said compliance has become costlier over the previous year and 74 percent said compliance costs more than a decade ago.

Furthermore, 64 percent of respondents said they anticipate labor-related guidelines to become more complex. While it isn’t a labor laws, the Trump Administration’s recent implementation of steel tariffs is a sign that sudden decisions by this president can significantly increase costs for some companies.

Higher wages?

With a low unemployment rate and a high demand for talent, you might expect companies to start paying a higher average wage. However, economists have projected an average wage increase of just 3 percent for 2018.

Baby Boomers aging into retirement could be one reason why wages won’t spike this year. As these more experienced professionals retire, they are being replaced by Millennials with much less experience, which means they can’t command the same salary.

Data is also showing that companies may be offering more in the form of benefits. According to the Transamerica Center for Retirement Studies, more companies are offering a Roth 401(k) retirement plans and tax-advantaged health savings accounts than in previous years.

Are you looking for top talent?

At Quanta, we stay on top of the latest hiring trends and data to better serve our clients. If your company is currently looking for a talent acquisition partner, please contact us today.