The year 2021 ended strong in the labor market, with American unemployment falling below 4% and hiring for the entire course of the year trending up month-to-month. As the calendar has turned to 2022, the improvements in hiring seen as life gradually returns to pre-COVID-19 pandemic norms provide promising indicators for economic growth in the new year.
But while employment approaches, and in some cases surpasses the levels at which it settled before spring 2020, Leisure and Hospitality remain well off their pre-pandemic marks.
The December 2020 Bureau of Labor Statistics jobs report says Leisure and Hospitality "continue to trend upward," and that isn't incorrect with 53,000 new hires made in the month. However, the industry remains 1.2 million below where it had been in early 2020. What's more, Leisure and Hospitality tends to see substantial hiring gains in autumn as a result of the holiday rush, with employment tapering down as seasonal positions lapse.
An exodus from contract Leisure and Hospitality jobs typical after the holidays actually occurred in 2021 during the season. Business Insider reports that more than 1 million workers left the industry in November 2021.
Business Insider's same report suggests the shortage of employees in Leisure and Hospitality may be due to wage shortages. The situation is something of a catch-22: Travelers and diners were not frequenting these types of businesses due to the pandemic. But the coming year promises to see significant upticks in travel, dining and entertainment, due both to the shift out of pandemic patterns and the overall strong employment correlating to more spending money.
Leisure and Hospitality employers will face difficult demands as a result. Whereas other industries have seen job seekers come to them, the solution for Leisure and Hospitality could be in employers coming to the seekers.
CareerCast.com's database of candidates is an ideal resource for employers to pinpoint the prospective employees who meet their positions' requirements, whether it's experience, skills, location or salary demands. Learn more about CareerCast.com's job board software.