The ZipRecruiter National Jobs Report for April 2015

The ZipRecruiter National Jobs Report for April 2015

As predicted in our February and March forecasts, hiring rebounded this month to add 223,000 new jobs according to the latest Bureau of Labor Statistics numbers. The gains were led by Construction and Health Care which both added 45,000 jobs. The unemployment rate dropped to 5.4%, while the labor force participation rate rose to 62.8%.

Despite the good news, our predictive analysis of April’s job posting activity shows softening in hiring demand, which could affect hiring activity in May and June.

Recruiter National Jobs Report Key Findings:

According to the ZipRecruiter Hiring Demand Index, which provides leading indicator data for hiring activity in 14 key industries, new job openings were down across the board in April, indicating a slowdown in employment in the coming months. The biggest losers were Healthcare (-3.34%), Financial Services (-1.62%), Business Support Services (-1%), Retail Trade (-.75%), and Manufacturing (-.65%).

While the overall picture is suggestive of weakening demand, there were bright spots for hiring on the MSA (Metropolitan Statistical Area) level, with the following 20 cities seeing the strongest increases in indexed hiring demand month-over-month:

ZipRecruiter Hiring Demand Index by MSA - April 2015

Metropolitan AreaHiring Demand
1.Chicago-Naperville-Joliet, IL-IN-WI+379
2.Los Angeles-Long Beach-Santa Ana, CA+333
3.Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington, TX+305
4.New York-Northern New Jersey-Long Island, NY-NJ-PA+283
5.Houston-Sugar Land-Baytown, TX+224
6.Detroit-Warren-Livonia, MI+164
7.Atlanta-Sandy Springs-Marietta, GA+157
8.Boston-Cambridge-Quincy, MA-NH+156
9.Denver-Aurora, CO+124
10.Minneapolis-St. Paul-Bloomington, MN-WI+109
11.San Antonio, TX+108
12.Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue, WA+104
13.Austin-Round Rock, TX+92
14.San Francisco-Oakland-Fremont, CA+82
15.Providence-New Bedford-Fall River, RI-MA+81
16.Washington-Arlington-Alexandria, DC-VA-MD-WV+79
17.Indianapolis-Carmel, IN+77
18.Salt Lake City, UT+70
19.San Diego-Carlsbad-San Marcos, CA+60
20.Charlotte-Gastonia-Concord, NC-SC+55

To validate the predictive power of our data we compare our projections with Bureau of Labor Statistics historical data. What we find is a strong correlative relationship. When a job is easy to fill, immediately after posting a position employment goes up. If a job is harder to fill, we are a leading indicator. We can also see early indications of industry contractions when job postings in an economic sector decline, which is followed by a concomitant drop in the BLS measure of employment.

Predictive Analysis

The five industries with the steepest declines in hiring demand for April 2015:

Graph 1


Our predictive analysis indicates that Health Care hiring will continue to decline in May, although at a slower pace.

Graph 2


Financial Services has been on an overall downward trend since it’s peak in 2013, a trend that will continue to deepen in May.

Graph 3


Business Support Services, which has had a strong run since September ‘14, looks to continue the precipitous decline that began in February of this year.

Graph 4



Retail continues to fall to earth from it’s seasonal high, as the predictable cycle of hiring around holidays will usually not bring new hiring until back to school sales in late summer.

Graph 5


Manufacturing also continues an a downward trajectory, as a strong dollar contributes to a decline in orders for U.S. goods from overseas markets.

The Top Job Titles by Job Posting Volume – April 2015

The ZipRecruiter National Jobs Report measures current and leading edge demand for employees across fourteen key industries by measuring relative month over month percent changes using the following benchmarks:

    1. Current Active Jobs – Our representative sample of millions of job postings provides an overview of existing demand for new employees (as opposed to hiring numbers), which provides a snapshot of the previous month’s hiring.
    2. New Jobs – Our representative sample of new job postings in January provides insight into current and upcoming demand, next month’s hiring numbers, and a predictive look at the demand curve for new employees across twenty-one industries.
    3. Employer Demand by Metro – We have further broken down these numbers to provide insight into current and upcoming demand for new employees across metropolitan areas nationwide.
    4. Key Indexed Industries are: Accommodation and Food Services, Business Support Services, Construction, Educational Services, Employment Services, Financial Activities, Health Care, Insurance Carriers and Related Activities, Management of Companies and Enterprises, Manufacturing, Motor Vehicle and Parts Dealers, Repair and Maintenance, Retail Trade, Warehousing and Storage.

Photo via Flickr / Bert Kaufmann

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At ZipRecruiter, our mission is to connect employers and job seekers with their next great opportunity. On the ZipRecruiter blog, we use insider experience and data derived from our AI-driven jobs marketplace to provide advice and insights on topics such as the job search process, interviewing, and labor market trends. Start your job search or post a job today and connect with us on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn!

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