Job Picture Remains Bleak for Class of 2010

Employers in the U.S. expect to hire 7 percent fewer graduates from the college Class of 2010 than they hired from the Class of 2009, according to the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE).

Employers responding to NACE’s Job Outlook 2010 Fall Preview survey expect to trim college hiring again this year, following significant cutbacks in hiring that affected the Class of 2009. The Class of 2009 saw employer hiring plans change almost overnight from a 6.1 percent increase to a decrease of more than 21 percent, due to the meltdown of the financial sector last fall.

Among employers responding to the 2010 survey, 40 percent anticipate cutbacks and just 17 percent anticipate increasing their hiring. However, the largest group—43 percent—plan to maintain their college hiring at 2009 levels.  Not surprisingly, the primary reason that employers gave for decreasing their new college hiring was the economy. 

The NACE employer survey underscores the need for PR majors to build stronger resumes and personal brands that allow them to better compete in the even tighter 2010 job market. 

NACE Executive Director Marilyn Mackes offered some hope by citing the fact they are seeing some positive movement to recruit in the spring. This is likely due to anticipation that the economic recovery will be underway by then, she said.

By region, the outlook is positive only in the Northeast, where employers report plans to increase hiring by 5.6 percent. All other regions report decreases: Midwest (-3.2 percent); Southeast (-9.9 percent); West (-36.8 percent).

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