The unemployment rate in North Carolina has dropped a few decimal points in last four to six months but we’re still hovering in the eight percent range. This statistic is actually distorted. For example, people that pass a certain amount of weeks of being unemployed are not officially counted as unemployed. Those that have given up looking don’t get counted and those that are working less than a full work week or are considered part time are not counted. Analysts contend that if those people were brought into the equation, the actual figure would be two and a half times the amount currently noted and would put us in the range of approximately 20 percent. I feel that we’re still feeling the ripple effect and companies are only hiring what they have to and very few are acquiring new employees in larger quantities.
Why the economy is still stalled
The economy is still very sluggish for different reasons. Many companies are either not keeping up with inflation or are losing money. This doesn’t create an incentive for corporations to go out and hire more people. Also, employers are using the mantra of “doing more with less” and this has created lower morale, hiring freezes, pay reductions and employees trying to see if the grass is greener on the other side.
Attracting jobs to North Carolina
In order to bring more companies into North Carolina, municipalities and government entities need to personalize their approach. Some companies want to go to rural areas where costs are lower and they can pay less wages and incur lower expenses. Some companies will go into metropolitan areas if tax concessions and other considerations are made for them. Each company has different green lights and government factions need to become more proactive to find out what they are. This is similar to a sales person cold calling a client and finding out their true needs. Government and their mode of thinking have to be similar as well.
Hot jobs and skills in 2013
Hot jobs coming to the forefront in 2013 involve Search Engine Optimization/Marketing/Social Media, Java development, .Net development as well as people that are well versed in multiple tiers of networking. These jobs and skills are cutting edge and companies can’t put off these needs any longer. If companies want to move forward and gain a foot hold, they’ll have to bite the fiscal bullet and get in the game. The skill sets that are a surplus currently are lower level network roles such as IT/Network Technicians, Helpdesk, Technical Support, beginning web development and technologies that are easier to attain. My advice to these professionals is to get involved with higher paying, higher demand technologies so that they can delineate themselves from the competition.
Mike Barefoot is the Senior Account Executive at Red Zone Resources Staffing and Recruitment. Follow Red Zone Resources on Twitter (@RedZoneJobs) or go to www.RedZoneResources.com for more information.