Slump in job market will rebound
The immediate reaction of companies, in a slumping western
economy, is to pull back on hiring activity, declare hiring freezes and even
make layoff announcements. But these are only short-lived strategies as
employers soon realize that they are deficient on talent in a competitive job
market. After a period of reactionary cutting and freezing, hiring activity will
return to a level of normalcy.
Hiring is largely a function of 'job churn' and there is no evidence that churn
will do anything but accelerate in the coming quarters. Churn is the result of
continuous movement among workers. In other words: workers quit, retire, get
fired, find new jobs, return to school, move to new locations, etc. - even
during a recession. In fact, today's professionals change jobs every three
years, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Churn can often accelerate during economic hardships. Like star athletes who
don't want to play for losing teams, top professionals seek out opportunities to
play for more successful organizations. The downturn of 2001 is an important
guide for what recruiters and job seekers can expect of the job market in the
months ahead. There was a dramatic reduction in the number of online job
listings in September 2001, on the heels of the tragic events of 9/11. But by
the end of the year, job postings were at a record high.