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Workforce Group Says IT, Health Care, Engineering, Skilled Trades Tops In Job Demand

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DETROIT — A new report from the Workforce Intelligence Network of Southeast Michigan finds that IT, health care, engineering, design and skilled trades positions are most in demand in the region’s labor market.

WIN is a joint effort of eight community colleges, seven Michigan Works Agencies and other organizations to create a comprehensive work force development system in Southeast Michigan that provides employers with the talent they need.

Following a recent report on the past five years of job growth, WIN is now releasing quarterly reports for Southeast Michigan, with real-time employer data.

The first report, which studied the first quarter of 2013, looks at employment opportunities in the region and growing demand in industry sectors. Included is data from nine counties — Genesee, Livingston, Macomb, Monroe, Oakland, Shiawassee, St. Clair, Washtenaw and Wayne — and the city of Detroit.

For first quarter 2013, WIN found the following:
* The regional labor market held fairly steady over the last year, from January 2012 to January 2013:
* The size of the region’s labor force — those actively working or seeking work — increased by 7,495, less than a fraction of a percent.
* The number employed — those with either full-time or part-time jobs — declined by 2,324 workers, also less than a fraction of a percent.
* The number of people unemployed — those actively looking and available for work — climbed by 9,819, almost 4 percent.
* The number of online job postings for the first quarter of 2013 was 76,185. That was up 37.8 percent over the fourth quarter of 2012, but down 7.7 percent from the first quarter of 2012.

WIN’s priority occupational clusters include information technology, health care, engineering and design, and skilled trades:
* Information technology saw the strongest employer demand in the first quarter of 2013 with 11,360 postings. This is up 21 percent from the fourth qurater of 2012 and 22 percent compared to a year ago.
* First quarter 2013 health care postings jumped 40 percent over fourth quarter 2012 but showed a 1 percent decline compared to the same period last year.
* First quarter 2013 demand for engineers and designers was up 7.8 percent over a year ago but down 14 percent from the fourth quarter of 2012.
* First quarter 2013 demand for skilled trades climbed 45 percent over the first quarter of 2012 but fell 14 percent from the fourth quarter of 2012.

The region’s top 5 job postings for first quarter 2013 were:
* Mechanical Engineers (2,434 postings)
* Computer Programmers (2,121 postings)
* Software Developers, Applications (2,101 postings)
* Registered Nurses (2,060 postings)
* Retail Salespersons (1,968 postings)

The top-five demand mix is roughly the same as in 2012, although demand for computer programmers has moved to second overall, up from seventh. Together, these top-five jobs represent 15 percent of the region’s total employer demand, in terms of online postings, in the first quarter 2013.

Each WIN county and the city of Detroit showed gains in job postings in the first quarter 2013 when compared to the fourth quarter of 2012. Only Wayne County, spurred by demand in the city of Detroit, showed continued gains in demand above first quarter 2012 levels. All others saw postings below first quarter 2012 levels.

WIN was founded with the support of the New Economy Initiative for Southeast Michigan and launched in November 2011. Community college partners in WIN are Macomb Community College, Monroe County Community College, Mott Community College, Oakland Community College, Schoolcraft College, St. Clair County Community College, Washtenaw Community College and the Wayne County Community College District. Participating Michigan Works agencies include the Detroit Employment Solutions Corp., the Genesee-Shiawassee Michigan Works Agency, the Livingston County Michigan Works, the Macomb-St. Clair Michigan Works, Oakland County Michigan Works, Southeast Michigan Community Alliance and the Washtenaw County Michigan Works.

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