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The latest news, trends and information to help you with your recruiting efforts.

Posted September 18, 2012 by

5 Rules for Discussing Politics in the Office

John Challenger of Challenger, Gray & ChristmasWith the presidential election fast approaching and the polar platforms of the two contenders making headlines, the debate over each candidate’s strengths and weaknesses is undoubtedly spilling over into the nation’s workplaces.

As the line blurs between employees’ work and personal lives, coworkers often become members of one’s social circle and therefore a sounding board for one’s political views and opinions.  However, while political talk in the office should not be discouraged, it is important that certain ground rules be followed, according to global outplacement consultancy Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc. (more…)

Posted September 06, 2012 by

August Job Cuts Down 12.5% From July; Fewest Since December 2010

Employers announced plans to shed 32,239 workers from their payrolls in August. It was the fewest number of monthly job cuts by US-based firms since December 2010, when layoffs totaled 32,004, according to the latest job cuts report released Thursday by global outplacement consultancy Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc.

August job cuts were down 12.5 percent from a July total of 36,855, making it the third consecutive decline in monthly job cuts. Last month was 37 percent lower than August 2011, when employers announced plans to eliminate 51,114 positions from their ranks. (more…)

Posted August 30, 2012 by

22.3 Million Americans About to Waste Work Time on Fantasy Football Preparations

NFL fans cheeringWith less than two weeks to go before the opening kick-off in the National Football League season, the estimated 22.3 million employed Americans who participate in fantasy football leagues will undoubtedly spend several hours in the coming days fine-tuning their draft selections and opening-day rosters.  Unfortunately for the nation’s employers, some of the time spent on player research may come during business hours.

According to a very rough, non-scientific, non-verifiable estimate, global outplacement firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc., if 22.3 million American workers spend one hour each week managing their fantasy football team during the average 15-week fantasy football season, the cost to the nation’s employers in terms of wages paid to unproductive workers could approach $6.5 billion.

“Before fantasy football players around the country launch a letter-writing campaign lambasting our numbers, it is important to realize that even if this figure was verifiable and accurate, it would not even register as a blip on the economic radar,” said noted John A. Challenger, chief executive officer of Challenger, Gray & Christmas. (more…)

Posted August 28, 2012 by

Of all workers laid off from 2009 to 2011, just 56.9% had jobs as of January 2012

John Challenger of Challenger, Gray & ChristmasLabor Day kicks off what is typically a more volatile employment environment, as companies adjust payrolls to align with year-end goals and plans for the coming year.  This makes it the ideal time for workers and job seekers alike to reboot their efforts to find or keep a job, according to the workplace authorities at global outplacement and executive coaching consultancy Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc.

“For many companies, business activity declines during the summer months, as sales slow and key decision makers take off for vacations.  The pace tends to quicken as the year comes to a close as companies scramble to hit earnings goals and establish objectives for the new year.  As a result, it is not unusual to see a flurry of employment changes in the final four months of the year,” said John A. Challenger, chief executive officer of global outplacement consultancy Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc.

Following the worst economic meltdown since the Great Depression, it should come as no surprise that this has been one of the worst recoveries.  That point was recently driven home by two reports confirming just how weak this recovery has been. (more…)

Posted August 20, 2012 by

If you fix the housing foreclosure crisis, you fix the job market

ForeclosureTwo news stories this morning illustrate the daunting challenges the economy continues to face on the road to recovery.  First, a New York Times articles points out that the Obama Administration was too slow to address the housing market crisis, which has been a major drag on the economy.

Meanwhile, a report from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York estimates that about one-third of the jump in unemployment from 5 percent to its 10 percent peak in October 2009 can be traced to a mismatch between the supply of labor and job openings.  The remaining two-thirds of the increase is due mainly to a lack of demand.  (more…)

Posted August 13, 2012 by

Employers Increasingly Focused on Retention As Economy Recovers

John Challenger of Challenger, Gray & ChristmasEven as employers appear reluctant to ramp up hiring, a new survey shows that the majority are committed to retaining the workers they have and are focused increasingly on employee engagement as the most effective means of achieving that goal.

In the survey of human resources professionals, 80 percent said their companies were focused on employee engagement and 67 percent said the focus on engagement is greater now than it was before the recession.  The survey was conducted by global outplacement and executive coaching consultancy Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc. among attendees at the annual conference and exposition of the Society for Human Resources Management held recently in Atlanta.

“As the job market continues to improve, albeit slowly, more and more workers are starting to seek new opportunities.  In recognition of this, employers are stepping up their efforts to hold on to the talent that was critical in helping the company survive the downturn,” said John A. Challenger, chief executive officer of Challenger, Gray & Christmas. (more…)

Posted August 02, 2012 by

45% Fewer Layoffs in July 2012 Than July 2011

John Challenger of Challenger, Gray & ChristmasPlanned layoffs declined for the second consecutive month in July, as employers announced job cuts totaling 36,855, down 2.0 percent from 37,551 in June, according to the latest job cuts report released Thursday by global outplacement consultancy Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc.

Job cuts last month were down 45 percent from a year ago, when employers announced plans to cut 66,414 workers from their payrolls in July. This is just the third time this year employers announced fewer cuts than the same month in 2011.

Overall, employers have announced 319,946 job cuts so far this year. The pace of downsizing is virtually even with a year ago; up just 2.5 percent from the 312,220 planned layoffs announced from January through July. (more…)

Posted July 30, 2012 by

Olympic Watching to Have No Measurable Impact on Overall Economy

London 2012 Olympics logoWith the Olympic Games officially underway over the weekend, NBC Television is barely into its 5,535 hours of coverage, including 3,500 hours of live streaming of events online.  The network hopes to match the success of the 2008 Olympic coverage that attracted an average of 27 million American viewers each day over the 17-day event. While most viewers will catch the most popular sports during the network’s prime-time coverage, the five- to eight-hour time difference between London and America’s four time zones (11 hours for those lucky enough to live in Hawaii), means that many fans who want to watch live events will do so from their work desks.

According to workplace expert John Challenger, CEO of global outplacement firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas, it is difficult to pin down a monetary value of the lost productivity that could result from employees watching the Olympics.  “In reality, it will have no measureable impact on the overall economy.  Where it will be most noticeable is the IT department, which is likely to observe a significant slowdown in company Internet speeds, as bandwidth is eaten up by Olympic fans watching streaming videos from their desks,” he noted.  “At the end of the day, productivity will be no worse for wear, as employees who slacked off during the workday, stay later to complete their projects or take work home using their growing arsenal of portable technology that has helped virtually erase the line between our work lives and personal lives.”

Posted July 16, 2012 by

Despite 30,000 Job Cuts by HP, Still Shortage of Professionals in Digital and Tech

John Challenger of Challenger, Gray & ChristmasPlanned layoffs that will impact 30,000 workers at computer giant Hewlett-Packard helped push job cuts announced by technology-sector firms to their highest level in three years, according to a report on tech-sector downsizing released Monday by global outplacement firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc.

Technology firms, including those in computer, electronics, and telecommunications, combined to announce 51,529 job cuts in the first half of 2012, a 260 percent increase from the 14,308 cuts announced during the same period a year ago.  The midyear total is, in fact, 39 percent higher than the 2011 yearend total of 37,038.  It is the largest midyear total since 2009, when the sector announced 118,108 job cuts in the first six months of the year.

The surge in tech-sector job cuts occurred amid an increase in overall job cuts.  However, the 283,091 job cuts announced across all industries in the first half of 2012 were up just 15 percent from the 245,806 total industry job cuts at the same point last year. (more…)

Posted July 10, 2012 by

Teen Summer Job Market Strongest Since 2007

The number of employed 16- to 19-year-olds expanded by 858,000 in June, making this the strongest summer hiring surge teenagers have seen since 2007, according to an analysis of government jobs data by global outplacement firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc.  June employment gains among teens were 22 percent greater than a year ago, when 714,000 16- to 19-year-olds joined the workforce.

Non-seasonally adjusted data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics shows that employers have now hired 1,015,000 teens since May 1, up 29 percent from 785,000 teen jobs added in May and June 2011.  The 1,015,000 teen employment gains so far this year are just 72,000 shy of last year’s three-month summer teen hiring total of 1,087,000.  Last year, 302,000 teens found employment in July and, since 2008, July employment gains have averaged 367,000, despite a weak economy.  So, it is highly likely that this year’s summer job gains among teenagers will far surpass the 2011 hiring season. (more…)