The Conference Board Help Wanted Online (HWOL) data series release for March 2014 indicated a number trends worth discussing.

The Conference Board Help Wanted OnLine® Data Series (HWOL) measures the number of new, first-time online jobs and jobs reposted from the previous month for over 16,000 Internet job boards, corporate boards and smaller job sites that serve niche markets and smaller geographic areas.

The Conference Board’s HWOL series measures help wanted advertising, i.e. labor demand. The HWOL data series began in May 2005. The HWOL provides seasonally adjusted data for the U.S., the nine Census regions and the 50 States. The HWOL also provides seasonally adjusted data for occupations and for the 52 largest metropolitan areas..

So what are the trends.  Three take aways

  • Shale drilling influences remain high.   The state of North Dakota, which has a very active Shale play,  had one of the lowest supply to demand ratios (S/D ratio) of 0.46.  That is there were over 2 jobs advertised for each available worker.  Texas and the metro areas in Texas also had high employer demand.
  • California economy is growing again but in spurts. Some metro areas in California such as San Jose had a very high employer demand (1.31 S/D ratio) while others like Riverside had a lot of searchers per job opeing (5.15)
  • STEM rules.  Computer, math, and engineering jobs are in high demand.  The HWOL data shows that many of these occupations have S/D ratios of less than one