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 :: Career News

U.S. businesses are hiring again

by Mary Anne Thompson

As its economy recovers from the global recession, the U.S. begins a slow but steady hiring trend across most job sectors

After nearly three years of suffering through rounds of layoffs, staff deficiencies and financial uncertainty due to the global recession, American businesses are finally hiring again. Though most regions of the country are still not seeing significant hiring yet, the U.S. is cautiously optimistic about its future. According to economic experts, it may take the country two-to-three years to return to pre-recession employment levels, but certain sectors are wasting no time beefing up staff now that they have the greenlight to hire.
        Statistics show healthcare occupations have already experienced major increases in hiring activity over the last several months. Of the 20 fastest-growing occupations in the U.S. economy, half are related to health care, due in large part to the aging of the baby boomer generation. In addition, as healthcare costs continue to rise, work is increasingly being delegated to lower-paid workers in order to save money. Physician assistants, medical assistants, dental hygienists, home health workers and physical therapist aides are in demand throughout the U.S. Many other job sectors have also experienced consistent hiring increases of at least 10 percent. Chief among these are the customer service, sales, IT, administration, business development and accounting/finance sectors.
        In the area of accounting and finance, tax accountants, compliance directors and credit managers are most in demand as businesses seek financial professionals who can help manage costs and enhance profitability as the country exits the recession.

In the area of IT, professionals who are able to tie IT initiatives to larger business objectives, helping their firms become more efficient and reduce costs, are most in demand. Network administrators, information systems security managers and systems engineers are among the most advertised positions.

        While there are abundant needs in certain established industries, many new hires will also be for emerging industries. Forty-one percent of hiring managers planning to hire within the next six months are recruiting for jobs focused on new areas such as social media, green energy, global relations and healthcare reform.
        Twenty-two percent of employers report some hiring will also be for unfilled positions for which they have been unable to find qualified candidates. The areas of IT, customer service and communications report the greatest skills deficits. Many companies have begun to look for creative ways to fill these and other positions. Some are looking to skilled freelance or contract workers to move their businesses forward. By going this route, companies alleviate the cost of hiring full-time workers before the economy is more stable. Some businesses are choosing to rehire retirees, while still others are looking beyond the U.S. to find needed talent.

Looking outside U.S. borders will also help to diversify a company's work force, something many American businesses would like to do. In order to attract talent, many U.S. companies also plan to provide new employees with greater flexibility in hopes this will help retain those who may consider switching jobs when the economy fully recovers.    

        As the U.S. begins to recover from the economic recession, its businesses are focused on rehiring laid-off workers, replacing lower-performing employees and steadily expanding their work forces. Every region of the country has increased its hiring activity by approximately 20 percent over the last six to nine months. Employment services industry leader Manpower Inc. reports 95 of the nation’s 100 largest Metropolitan Statistical Areas have a positive hiring outlook for the near future. Expectations are American businesses will continue their hiring trend well into the foreseeable future.
Interviewing Advice
  • During an interview, act confident, team-oriented and positive. It is appropriate to give oneself credit for accomplishments and achievements. Do not be shy about truthfully communicating ambitions and successes. In the United States, this is perceived as showing self-confidence.
  • American interviewers will also be impressed if the discussion focuses on customer value, shows how the applicant has been an effective team player, and demonstrates how he or she has worked creatively and independently. A positive attitude is very important. Most employers seek people who are positive, upbeat and energetic.
  • Direct eye contact while speaking and listening is also vital. The failure to make eye contact may be interpreted as a sign of boredom, disinterest, lack of confidence or even dishonesty.

Cultural Advice/Protocol and Business Etiquette

·         There are many styles of management within the country, usually reflecting the type of work that is done within a company. Regulated or government-serving companies tend to be the most conservative, while businesses serving the public tend to be more creative and informal.

·         Because the business environment in the United States is highly competitive in all industries, American companies are constantly seeking more effective methods of management and more efficient practices among their employees to boost productivity, lower costs and reduce attrition.

·          American managers are required to remain aware of trends and new developments in management techniques and adjust their management practices to take advantage of these advances in knowledge. Jobs are continuously created and eliminated, and an employee’s responsibilities may change over time.

Mary Anne Thompson is the Founder and President of Going Global, Inc. (www.goinglobal.com) a subscription database service that contains career and employment information for more than 80 locations. More than one million users enjoy Going Global’s unique content, which is researched in-country by local career experts and updated annually. She is also an author, lecturer and frequent guest on various media outlets, including NBC and CNN International. Previously, Mary Anne served as an attorney and advisor to President Ronald Reagan in the White House.


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