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US staffing market to increase 3%, SIA forecast says

September 19, 2017

Total US staffing market — which includes temporary staffing as well as place and search — will rise by 3% both this year and in 2018, bringing total revenue in the industry to $145.1 billion next year, according to a new industry forecast by Staffing Industry Analysts.

US temporary staffing industry revenue is also projected to grow 3% in both 2017 and 2018 to reach a total of $125.6 billion next year, unchanged from the estimated growth rates in an April forecast.

Click on chart to enlarge.

“One headwind to temporary staffing market growth has been a scarcity of labor supply, noted in a variety of occupations, from construction to highly skilled IT roles,” said Tony Gregoire, director of research, the Americas, at Staffing Industry Analysts. “Moreover, bill rates have been slow to adjust, partly due to low productivity growth.”

The 2017 growth projection for the temporary staffing market belies the difference in trends among the various occupational segments, from declines in office/clerical to double-digit growth in travel nurse and education. Performance not only varies by occupational segment, but also by location.

Although the forecast does not project growth to accelerate beyond 3% in 2018 — partly due to the maturity of this expansion cycle — Staffing Industry Analysts researchers believe next year offers a bit more opportunity than the current one. After a weak start to this year, GDP growth has improved and there is still the possibility, albeit diminishing, of a legislative catalyst such as tax reform or an infrastructure package to spur growth next year.

“At $145 Billion in US revenue, the large size and scope of the staffing industry highlights its importance to the overall economy,” said Barry Asin, President of SIA. “The modest growth ahead that we see for the industry in 2018 is typical of an economy this late in the cycle where labor is in short supply.”

Corporate members can access the full forecast online.

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