This morning, the US Census and the Monthly Retail Trade Survey noted that retail sales are declining – down 0.2% in April and May. Despite the recent slowing, retail hiring is reaching new highs. During May 2012, more than 153,000 job ads were seen online for retail sales professionals. The volume of available job ads not only increased 54% compared to May of 2011 and 95% versus 2010, but also marks a new high in demand for retail sales positions.
Hiring Demand for Retail Sales Professionals – 4 Year Hiring Trend
Below are the 10 retail industries with the most online job listings during May. Office Supplies and Stationary Stores saw the highest volume of job ads with more than 25,000 and more than doubling in demand between May 2011 and May 2012. Only one of the below 10 industries saw a decline – hiring by Men's Clothing Stores was down about 3% compared to May 2011.
Retail Industries with Most Job Ads for Sales Professionals – May 2012 vs. May 2011
The five metropolitan areas with the highest volume of online job ads for retail sales professionals were New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Washington (DC), and Philadelphia. While retailers in New York placed the greatest volume of online job ads, with more than 7,000 during May and growing 54% versus last year, employers in Chicago experienced the highest year-over-year growth in hiring demand of these five cities at more than 55% during May.
Despite rising demand, the available pool of candidates remains large nationwide and retailers are likely to find sales professionals moderately easy-to-recruit. Degrees of ease (or difficulty) will vary by location depending on local talent pools and competition by employers. Of the 5 cities above with high demand, our Hiring Scale™ shows that retailers in Washington, DC are currently experiencing some of the heaviest competition to attract qualified sales professionals, Here, Recruiters at retail companies may experience a longer time-to-fill than their counterparts in other areas of the United States. The average posting period of a retail sales job ad in Washington, DC is more than 6 weeks.
Hiring Scale for Retail Sales Jobs in Washington, DC – Hard-to-Fill Locations
Just as the Hiring Scale shows difficult places to recruit retail sales professionals, we can see that some of the locations with the best conditions for sourcing are currently Dalton (Georgia), Decatur (Alabama), and Elkhart (Indiana). These areas are likely to fill job openings faster than the rest of the United States, with job ads staying online for as few as 5 weeks – more than one week shorter than in Washington, DC.
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