CareerBuilder’s annual summer job hiring forecast offers hope to those looking for seasonal employment. Twenty-nine percent of U.S. employers plan to hire workers for the summer, up from 21 percent last summer and an average of 22 percent over the past four years.
This is welcome news, particularly for 18-29-year-olds, 32 percent of whom are underemployed or unemployed, according to Gallup.
Summer hiring looks to get a boost from a stronger than expected growth in manufacturing (45 percent plan to add summer workers, hospitality (44 percent), retail (34 percent, and finance (31 percent).
Seasonal jobs hold the possibility of full-time employment, which makes summer work “a good opportunity for recent college grads, unemployed job seekers, and people who have left the workplace altogether,” CareerBuilder said. Nearly three-quarters (71 percent) of employers hiring this summer said they will be considering some hires for permanent positions. Thirty-nine percent said they’re less likely to hire someone who isn’t interested in working beyond the summer.
Nearly two-thirds (64 percent) of employers said they will pay their summer hires $10 or more per hour, up from 58 percent in 2011. Twenty percent said they will pay more than $16 per hour, while 29 percent will pay between $8 and $10.
And it’s not too late, employers told CareerBuilder. While 42 percent said they typically complete their summer hiring by April, 38 percent are still hiring in May, and 19 percent said they will hire in June and beyond.
“Confidence is up among the employers we most closely associate with summer hiring,” said Brent Rasmussen, president of CareerBuilder North America in a statement. “The forecast is also a strong indicator that the job market will continue to strengthen as we come closer to the half of 2012.”
The nation’s unemployment rate has dropped from 8.9 last October to its present level of 8.1, but analysts attribute this in part to the hundreds of thousands who have quit searching for a job and left the workforce. The labor market has been unable to gain traction in recent weeks. First-time claims for unemployment benefits last week were unchanged from the week before. But they remain under 400,00, which is considered the benchmark to indicate sustained job growth.
Donald Liebenson writes news and features for Millionaire Corner. He has been published in the Chicago Tribune, The Chicago Sun-Times, The Los Angeles Times, Fiscal Times, Entertainment Weekly, Huffington Post, and other outlets. He has also served as a marketing writer for Chicago-based Questar Entertainment and distributor Baker & Taylor.
A graduate of the University of Southern California, he is married with a college-age son. He also writes extensively about entertainment.