Charlotte’s Unemployment Statistics May Not Be All That They Appear

February 11, 2014 | Talent Management

As of August 2013, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) cites the Charlotte area at a 7.6 percent unemployment rate, compared with the November 2013 national average of 7 percent. At first glance it may appear that Charlotte companies are experiencing a hiring crisis; however, things aren’t always as they seem.

What Factors Contribute to Unemployment Statistics?

According to the BLS, the unemployment rate is determined by the results of random surveys of groups of residents, as polling each home would be a lengthy, expensive process. Household members aged 16 years old and above who are currently contacting an employer for work, sending resumes, submitting job applications, placing and answering advertisements for work, checking union or professional registries, or engaging in any other form of job searching are considered unemployed.

Not only are these statistics inaccurate because every eligible worker is not surveyed, it also accounts for seasonal employees and teenage workers, who may only work during certain times of the year. While these individuals are not currently working due to various factors, they factor into the overall unemployment rate, making it difficult to determine whether fluctuations are due to normal seasonal patterns or economic ebbs and flows.

A Look at the Charlotte Economy

In 2013, Forbes ranked Charlotte number 19 on its list of Best Places for Businesses and Careers. The city serves as one of the country’s largest financial centers, coming in only second to New York City. In addition to financial services, other leading industries in the city include motorsports and energy. Many major companies maintain their company headquarters, or at least a major presence in the Charlotte area, including Bank of America, Wachovia, Wells Fargo, Lowe’s, Novant Health, Time Warner Cable, TIAA-CREF, and more.

That’s not all ─ WRAL.com recently interviewed Mike Walden, an economist at North Carolina State University, who predicted economic growth to rise at a fast pace. Approximately 75 percent of new jobs in the state have been in the Triangle, Triad, and Charlotte area, Walden says. He foresees job growth in these areas of the state to continue into 2014, especially in the Triangle and Charlotte area, where he believes employment rates will drop to nearly five percent by the end of this year.

Looking for new opportunities in the Charlotte area? At Talent Bridge, it’s our job to find open positions that meet your short- and long-term goals. Our team can help you find the career you’ve been looking for ─ not just another job to pay the bills. Let us provide you with assistance in your job search.