Jobs Staying Open Longer Than Ever

July 2014 JOLTSAugust may have disappointed labor analysts with its unexpectedly low count of new jobs, but for recruiters, the evidence out of Washington and elsewhere says recruiting difficulty is only going to get worse.

Nationally, it took 24.9 business days (Monday-Saturday are business days for this report) to fill a job in July, according to the Dice-DFH Vacancy Duration Measure. That’s a bare tick off June’s 25.1 days. Meanwhile, the Job Openings and Labor Turnover Summary from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, put July’s openings rate at 3.3, a 22 percent increase over the 2.7 in July 2013.

What these numbers mean is that the average number of of openings, expressed as a percent of total employment, is increasing. Or, to put it more simply, the number of open jobs is creeping up.

With the size of the labor force shrinking, it’s no wonder that it is taking longer and longer to fill a job.

Now Wanted Technologies, which analyzes online job postings from corporate sites, job boards, and elsewhere, found that for the most in-demand jobs, as determined by the number of ads posted online, job posting time alone can be more than double the national average of time to fill.

The typical job posting for a nurse stayed up 50 days. For a software developer, it was up for 47 days.

Article Continues Below

Average posting time 8.2014Not surprisingly, these jobs also regularly appear on Wanted’s list of the top 10 most in-demand. Joining them in August were ads for truck drivers, which stayed up 55 days on average, customer services reps, retail managers, and marketing managers.

The Dice-DFH Vacancy Duration Measure, which uses the time it takes from the announcement of a job opening to an offer being accepted, says July’s 24.9 average was almost 9 percent longer than in July the year before.

For some industries, the time to fill can be 50 percent or more above the national average. Hiring information workers — a category weighted with computer occupations — it took 38.7 business days to fill a job in July.

John Zappe is the editor of and a contributing editor of John was a newspaper reporter and editor until his geek gene lead him to launch his first website in 1994. He developed and managed online newspaper employment sites and sold advertising services to recruiters and employers. Before joining ERE Media in 2006, John was a senior consultant and analyst with Advanced Interactive Media and previously was Vice President of Digital Media for the Los Angeles Newspaper Group.

Besides writing for ERE, John consults with staffing firms and employment agencies, providing content and managing their social media programs. He also works with organizations and businesses to assist with audience development and marketing. In his spare time  he can be found hiking in the California mountains or competing in canine agility and obedience competitions.

You can contact him here.


2 Comments on “Jobs Staying Open Longer Than Ever

  1. Interesting info and well aligned to what we’ve been hearing over the past few months. In fact, a number of our recent clients have had positions unfilled for over a year in niche areas including machine learning, hypersonic propulsion, optomechanics, semiconductor photonics, etc. I think when you hear about positions being open for exceptionally long periods of time, that you can break down the reasons into two categories. In some cases, companies are just unwilling to pay what is necessary to attract the right prospects. In other cases, the skill sets required are very scarce and there is a fundamental supply-demand imbalance. Taking a hard, honest look at unfilled positions and deciding which of these two categories your need falls into is really important. If your company just isn’t offering enough enough money, then fighting the battle for better compensation is time well spent. If you’re not paying competitively for a particular skill, then you will just keep running into more and more problems recruiting for those positions and your time-to-fill metrics will keep creeping up. If you are dealing with a skill set that is particularly in demand and hard to source, then you should look at your resources and honestly ask yourself if you are doing everything possible to stay competitive. Subscribing to Monster and LinkedIn in today’s world is not going to give you much of an edge. Evaluate what’s available and make use of new technologies. Just my two cents, but I think sometimes time-to-fill creeps up because TA leadership just isn’t being honest with themselves about what their company is offering or the quality of the recruiting resources they are using.

    Doug Friedman
    LinkedIn Profile

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *