Employment Perks versus Monetary Compensation

There is a growing trend indicating that U.S. employers are re-evaluating how they compensate their employees. Employers are finding ways of using perks and benefits instead of monetary compensation. The motivation could be driven by the fact that these perks cost less than pay raises. Another plausible explanation is employers have learned what makes their job and company appealing through use of these creative perks. Employees forego exploring job changes because they like the perks their current employer offers.

There is a (logical) split among employees in their view of these creative perks. Those at the lower end of the pay scale may not be as interested because they have more immediate financial needs. But, for those who are earning more, the perks have more appeal. For these higher earners, their reward for continued employment could be additional vacation time, flex time, increases in certain employee benefits, stock options, and so on. Perks that affect work-life balance and lifestyle seem to be more appealing to these higher wage earners.

Brian Howard is the author of The Motivated Series of Job Search Books.

Jobs Market Continues to Improve – Here’s Some Numbers

Jobs: U.S. employers added 148,000 jobs in December. That is over 85 straight months of employment growth in the U.S. The unemployment rate held steady at 4.1 percent. As a point of reference, the unemployment rate was 10% in 2009 which shows how our jobs market has improved over the course of time.

During 2017, the economy added over 1.5 million new jobs. However, there are some indications now that the robust jobs market could be slowing. This could be a sign of an economy at “full employment” or the inability of employers to find and hire skilled employees.

Wages: The average American earns over $26.50 an hour. That is an increase of over 50 cents an hour over the course of 2017. This news about wage growth has been anticipated as the jobs market begins to struggle to fill open positions. With a reduced supply of skilled workers (which will become a more prevalent issue in the future), employers will need to raise wages to attract and keep employees.

Underemployment: The U-6 figure from the Bureau of Labor Statistics is a statistic which includes those who have stopped looking for work and people who want full-time jobs but are stuck in part-time positions. In December that figure was 8.1% and has been trending downward over the course of the year.

Labor Participation Rate: The number of Americans in the labor force, plus those actively looking for work, has remained reasonably constant at 62.7%. Labor participation continues to struggle and still hovers close to a forty year low. This will not change partly because baby boomers continue to retire and younger Americans are choosing not to participate in the workforce.

Brian Howard is an actively practicing executive recruiter and the author of the Motivated Series of Job Search Books.

U.S Economy Adds 228,000 Jobs in November

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the U.S. economy added 228,000 jobs in November which exceeded estimates by more than 28,000 jobs. The unemployment rate held steady at 4.1 percent (a 17 year low). Employment continued to trend up in professional and business services, manufacturing, and health care. Manufacturing unemployment is at 2.6% (near record low).

The U.S. economy has now added jobs for the last 86 months.

Brian Howard Interviewed on Business Innovators Radio Network

Brian Howard was recently interviewed by Virginia Franco on Business Innovators Radio Network. The interview was an engaging discussion covering a wide variety of job search topics.

You can listen to the interview on Business Innovators Radio Network or on Resume Storyteller with Virginia Franco.

Brian Howard is the author of The Motivated Series of job search books which include: The Motivated Job Search, The Motivated Networker, Over 50 and Motivated, The Motivated Job Search Workbook, and Motivated Resumes and LinkedIn Profiles – all of which can be purchased on Amazon.

Unemployment Rate Falls as the Economy Adds More Jobs

The rate of unemployment has fallen to 4.1% and that is the lowest rate in nearly twenty years! The economy added 261,000 jobs in October and has added around 1.5 million jobs since the beginning of the year.

The interesting thing to watch will be wage growth. Will the increase in the employment numbers mean that wages will go up as companies compete for qualified employees? Thus far the numbers do not show that, but there has been upward wage pressure starting to appear in some industries. The open question is whether this will start to happen across more industries. Time will tell.

New Book Release – Motivated Resumes and LinkedIn Profiles

I am pleased to announce the release of my fifth book and the next book in the Motivated Series of job search books, Motivated Resumes and LinkedIn Profiles.

This book is unlike any resume or LinkedIn profile book ever written! It gives you unprecedented insight and advice from over a dozen of the most credentialed, experienced, and award-winning resume and LinkedIn profile writers in the industry.

Motivated Resumes and LinkedIn Profiles is an instructional book on how to write persuasive resumes and LinkedIn profiles. It contains over 180 pieces of sage advice quoted throughout the book from these experienced and award-winning resume writers. You will learn how these writers create impact resumes and LinkedIn profiles that will stand out, get you interviews, and job offers! Get inside the minds of these writers. Learn how they think about keywords, titling, branding, accomplishments, format, color, design, and a host of other resume writing and LinkedIn profile considerations as they create stunning resumes and winning LinkedIn profiles. The book contains over 80 sample resumes and other job search written communications.

Some say that Motivated Resumes and LinkedIn Profiles reveals too many secrets of the resume writing industry! Become an “insider” and learn the secrets from some of the very best.

You can check out this newly released book on Amazon.

Other books authored by Brian Howard include: The Motivated Job Search, The Motivated Networker, Over 50 and Motivated, and The Motivated Job Search Workbook (to be used in conjunction with The Motivated Job Search and Over 50 and Motivated).

Jobless Claims Tick Up Slightly Off Historic Low

In September, the number of new claims for unemployment hit the lowest level in nearly 45 years! However, new claims increased slightly this month by 10,000 to a rate of 233,000 (seasonally adjusted). This is not too surprising. There will likely be some volatility in the job market numbers in the coming months as a result of the storms that hit Texas, Florida, and the Gulf Coast. A counter balance is the hiring that traditionally takes place in anticipation of the upcoming holidays.

When taken as a whole, and netting out the potential effects of the storms, the jobs market is reasonably healthy. Qualified and motivated job seekers should be finding job opportunities across most regions of the country and across most industries.