Last month, CareerBuilder and Economic Modeling Specialists Intl (EMSI) announced the results of data analysis showing that the two largest population groups in today’s workforce, baby boomers and millennials, have weathered the recession differently and hold unequal percentages of jobs in today’s economy.
The labor market data that EMSI analyzed shows that the number of jobs held by baby boomers (age 55-64) grew 9 percent from 2007 to 2013, a gain of 1.9 million, while the millennial workforce (age 22-34) shows an increase of only 110,000 jobs and employment in 2013 only increased .3 percent from 2007. The numbers point to an older population that is holding on to its jobs, postponing retirement, and even increasing its labor force participation rate and employment-to-population ratio. Millennials, on the other hand, entered the workforce at a time when there were very weak entry-level job prospects and left the workforce in greater numbers or took lower paying jobs than they may have otherwise done.
Aside from being discouraging for young workers, the analysis is a wakeup call for employers. While some employers have been maintaining a “steady as she goes” approach to staff retention and minimal turnover, they may soon be facing numerous vacancies when large numbers of employees retire. The open positions these workers vacate could also leave a skills shortage if new workers aren’t being trained or if there isn’t adequate professional development being offered.
At PSG, we encourage workers of all ages to take advantage of the staff assistance and development opportunities we offer. For instance, the temp-to-perm route to employment can be a successful option to finding the right fit in a job and/or gaining a foothold in a particular company or industry.