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Idaho employers expected to stay conservative in hiring

Idaho employers expect to hire at a conservative pace in the third quarter, according to Manpower Employment Outlook Survey results released June 8. The staffing firm’s net employment outlook for the state is 5 percent in the quarter, company spokeswoman Mary Ann Lasky said in a release.

Eleven percent of Idaho companies interviewed plan to hire more employees, 6 percent plan to reduce payrolls, 79 percent expect to maintain current staff levels and 4 percent are not certain of their staffing plans, Manpower reported. The percentages were the same for the Boise-Nampa metro area, which reported a net employment outlook of 11 percent for the second quarter of this year and 2 percent for the third quarter of 2009.

Wendie Gregory, who manages Manpower’s branch in Boise, said in an interview that participants in the Boise-Nampa metro survey may have been optimistic about the previous quarter. She saw strong demand for workers from the start of 2010 until April as employers replenished inventories and fulfilled orders. That activity has slowed, but “it’s getting a little better,” she said. “When we’re recruiting, we have to call more candidates to hear back from people. That tells me they’re getting jobs, or doing something.”

Job prospects in Idaho and the Boise-Nampa metro area in the third quarter appear best in construction, transportation and utilities, information, financial activities, leisure and hospitality, and other services, Manpower said. Staffing reductions are planned among employers in durable goods manufacturing, professional and business services, education and health services, and government. Manpower’s survey results indicated that staffing levels aren’t expected to change in non-durable goods manufacturing, and wholesale and retail trade.

Nationwide in the third quarter, of the 18,000 employers that Manpower surveyed, 18 percent expect to increase staff levels and 8 percent expect to reduce payrolls, resulting in a net employment outlook of 10 percent (6 percent seasonally adjusted). Seventy percent do not expect to change their staff levels and 4 percent are undecided.

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