Q4 Job Vacancies Up 31 Percent in MN

The state had 5.8 unemployed people per job vacancy in the fourth quarter of 2010, down nearly 30 percent from the previous year when there were 8.2 unemployed people for each vacancy.

The number of job vacancies in Minnesota increased 31 percent in the fourth quarter of 2010 as employers reported 33,800 job openings in the state, according the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development's (DEED) semi-annual job vacancy survey.

The state had 5.8 unemployed people per vacancy in the fourth quarter of 2010, down nearly 30 percent from the previous year when there were 8.2 unemployed people for each vacancy.

“These findings are another indication of an improving economy,” DEED Commissioner Mark Phillips said in a statement. “At the same time, they point to a continued tight labor market where job seekers face challenges finding work.”

The Twin Cities area accounted for 61.2 percent of the job vacancies, with 20,700 openings. The remaining vacancies, 13,100, were in Greater Minnesota.

The most job vacancies, 21.4 percent, were in the health care and social assistance sector. Retail trade accounted for 12.2 percent of the vacancies, and manufacturing accounted for 10 percent.

The survey found that 39 percent of the state's job vacancies were for part-time employment and 14 percent were for temporary or seasonal work. About 45 percent of the jobs required education or training beyond a high school degree.

Eighty-four percent of the businesses that were surveyed said they expect to keep employment levels about the same in the next six months, 7.8 percent expect to add workers, and 8.1 percent expect to decrease staffing levels.

DEED conducts the job vacancy survey-which surveys 13,000 firms in 20 industry sectors-in the second and fourth quarters each year.