Houston Jobs Report: Unemployment Dips to 4.6 Percent

The most recent jobs report shows the non-seasonally adjusted Houston unemployment rate dipped slightly to 4.6 percent in August. In spite of this decline, 4,100 Houston jobs were lost during the month, on a seasonally adjusted basis.

Texas’s unemployment rate dropped to a seasonally adjusted 4.1 percent in August. This figure represents the lowest Texas unemployment rate since January 2001. The state lost 13,700 jobs during the month, after four consecutive months of job growth. However, some industries did post notable gains in August: Leisure and hospitality positions increased by 5,900, while professional and business services added 4,000 jobs.

What do these numbers mean for employers looking to staff Houston jobs?

In light of the area’s declining unemployment rate, Robert Half Senior Regional President Mark Malone underscores the importance of having a speedy hiring process in place and ready to go, as many top candidates have multiple offers and may not be willing to wait on yours. Benchmarking your starting salaries with resources like the Robert Half Salary Guide is an important factor, as well.

But financial compensation isn’t the only variable that employers should consider. “Starting pay is always going to be important,” says Malone, “but what we are seeing is that candidates are also concerned with non-monetary incentives like childcare, telecommuting and flexible schedules.”

Malone also emphasizes that it’s important for employers to examine the steps they take toward retaining top employees.

“Though the decrease in jobs means some employees are hesitant to make a career move, others are more confident about their options,” Malone notes. He advises checking in with star players to make sure they’re satisfied with their current roles and opportunities for career advancement or professional development. Additionally, incentives and bonuses aimed at retaining top employees could prove beneficial in keeping key staff members where they are.

Having trouble staffing key positions as the Houston unemployment rate declines? Call Robert Half at (855) 407-4735 and see how we can help.