|Industry News: I want to start with something I’ve heard a lot about recently. The R-word.. yes, there are many rumors about an upcoming recession. Let me put your mind at ease for a minute; Houston typically lags behind the national economy.. which is great for us! Also, we are still seeing unemployment of degreed professionals at an all-time low of under 2%. There is still a massive talent shortage, with the current market showing at minimum two job openings for each unemployed individual. Even with the national economy showing signs of slowing – I don’t see much of a slowdown over the next few months.|
I’ve also been getting lots of questions about remote and hybrid schedules. Here is a mix of my thoughts and trends I’ve seen in Houston from both the client and candidate perspectives.
Many Houston companies would like to see people in the office 4 to 5 days per week or are turning their current hybrid schedules into in-office roles. Houston employers do not seem to be big fans of remote work, which is becoming very unpopular with candidates. This can turn into a big problem when trying to not only retain current staff but also when hiring new talent.
Most candidates we talk to are looking because they feel their employer isn’t flexible enough and are targeting hybrid or remote roles. I would say most candidates are not looking for 100% remote roles; most people enjoy visiting an office setting at some point during the week (although that’s become fewer and fewer recently). While there are candidates only considering remote roles, the happy medium and the most trendy scenario seems to be a 3/2 hybrid schedule (3 days in the office, two days from home).
As you can see, the two sides don’t always match; employees are starting to “dig in their heels” and forcing employers to change their views and policies. Remember, companies outside of Houston (both in Texas and nationally) are open to a remote workforce. Previously Houston companies were only in competition for top talent with other Houston employers.. now.. they compete with organizations in different cities & states that are open to 100% remote employees.
March 2022 LOCAL STATISTICS
o National Unemployment Rate: 3.6
o Houston Unemployment Rate: 4.3
o Labor Participation Rate: 62.2% – All-time high January 2000: 67.3%
o Manufacturing Index: 57.5
o Oil Rig Count: 750 (last year 245) – All-time high around 1900 in 2012!
o Price of Oil: 115 (avg in June 2022) (last year 75)