Staffing Industry Statistics Tells a More Optimistic Tale

staffing industry statisticsAccording to the ASA (American Staffing Association) Staffing Index, staffing employment in September was up 5.1% from one year ago and 2.4% from August.

If you’re in the industry—or interesting in getting into it—these staffing industry statistics are good news, of course. It means the business is growing. In spite of what most economists agree is a sluggish recovery from the Great Recession, the demand for temporary labor is definitely out there.

Last Year’s Staffing Industry Statistics Bear This Out

This more recent news comes on top of staffing industry statistics statistics from last year, which showed that in the two years after the Great Recession ended—from June 2009 through June 2011—U.S. staffing firms created more new jobs than any other industry. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the temporary help services industry added nearly half a million workers and accounted for 91% of total non-farm job growth in that time.

At the risk of sounding overoptimistic, we believe there are good reasons to look at these ongoing staffing industry statistics as precursors of better times ahead with regard to employment. ASA research has shown staffing jobs to be a leading jobs and economic indicator. The ASA research indicates that staffing job trends lead non-farm employment by three months when the economy is emerging from a recession and by six months during periods of normal economic growth. 

The End Is Not In Sight

So while while the American staffing industry still has far to go before it returns to its pre-recession high (before it lost more than a third of its work force), the trends are promising for the economy as a whole and—even more so in the short run—for the staffing industry, itself. Because the staffing industry tends to peak in the fourth quarter of any given year, we can expect even stronger demand over the next few months.

If you’re in the industry, you should plan for growth. If you’re thinking of getting into the industry, sooner would seem to be even better than later.