According to the most recent monthly jobs report, the seasonally adjusted Seattle unemployment rate for November was 4.2 percent, a 0.4 percentage point increase from October, but a 0.4 percentage point decrease from November 2014. Additionally, 1,400 Seattle jobs were added on a seasonally adjusted basis since the last reporting period. Across the state of Washington, the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was 5.3 percent in November, up slightly from the previous month. On a seasonally adjusted basis, the state added 10,100 jobs in November.
What does the current Seattle unemployment rate mean for area employers?
Robert Half District President Josh Warborg notes, “The year-over-year decline in the Seattle unemployment rate, coupled with the increase in jobs across the state, has created a very active hiring market.” He advises hiring managers looking to fill open positions to act aggressively so they don’t miss out on top candidates. “In the current Seattle jobs market, employers who act quickly are the ones that get their preferred hires. The best candidates have multiple offers on the table, and dragging out the interview process increases your chances of losing them.”
Warborg suggests managers streamline their hiring process to ensure it doesn’t take too long, or else candidates may lose interest. “It’s also wise to remember that a degree of flexibility is required in terms of ‘must-have’ and ‘like-to-have’ skills,” he adds. “Better to have a new employee that needs some training than to miss out on top talent completely or make a bad hire.”
In addition, Warborg notes that employers should offer competitive salaries and benefits to attract the best professionals. “Better compensation packages will not only help land the best candidates; they’ll also help with employee retention down the road.”
How does the current Seattle jobs data affect your hiring plans? For assistance with your staffing needs, contact your local Robert Half recruiter at (844) 839-5878.