Engineering Talent Demand Week of June 5th, 2024

Engineering Talent Demand June 2024

As reported this week by Bloomberg, US Job Openings overall are at their lowest point since 2021. Wright’s most recent Engineering Talent Demand Gauge is almost perfectly aligned with this data and shows we’re now down to 2.47 open jobs for every one engineer looking to change roles. This is the coolest we’re seen the market since Wright began tracking this data.

What’s at the center of this cooling? Our thoughts are:

  • Layoffs continue at the nation’s largest public companies. The keyword there being ‘public’. There seems to be new pressure from Wall Street for public companies to right size their workforces following the post-pandemic hiring boom. What started as layoffs in technology is now spread to manufacturing as well. Interestingly we’re not seeing this trend with large privately held companies. They seem to be holding onto their valued employees while those public companies continue to shed.
  • Interest rates remain extremely high and companies continue to have a pause on large capital investments until money becomes cheaper. We’re confident that as the Fed lowers interest rates, hopefully sooner than later, purse strings will loosen up and talent demand will swing in the opposite direction.
  • We’re now in full swing of the 2024 Presidential campaign and, along with that, wait and see mode. Will the economic agendas set by the current administration remain in effect going into 2025? Will green energy and electric vehicle investments remain a priority? Will domestic chip manufacturing remain a priority? Who the heck knows but it will impact billions of investment dollars that directly drives the creation of hundreds of thousands of jobs.
  • While re-shoring remains a thing we’ve actually seen an uptick in massive offshoring efforts. Movement of IT roles to less expensive parts of the world has been a trend for decades but more and more the shift includes roles like engineering, finance and general manufacturing.

Our team at Wright remains optimistic. It is still difficult to recruit good technical talent and always will be. The anomaly is that our team at Wright is recruiting for the highest number of open technical positions since our company was founded. Our growth hasn’t slowed. We’re adding recruiting talent to our staff and intend to expand our presence even further looking into 2025. More to come on that.

Companies in the US, in particular manufacturers, needed the job market to normalize. It has. Now let’s brace ourselves for a slightly turbulent Q3 and Q4 and look forward to 2025!

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