Showing posts with label georgia restaurants. Show all posts
Showing posts with label georgia restaurants. Show all posts

Saturday, December 19, 2020

Georgia Job Recovery: Where the Jobs Are and Are Not

 Georgia Nonfarm Employment, January 2019 - November 2020

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

As the job market in Georgia continues to recover from the shock of the Coronavirus pandemic and related temporary and permanent shutdowns of businesses, some industries are coming back at a faster pace than others.

In November, the state recorded a total of 4,561,700 jobs, an increase of 438.000 jobs compared to April but still 110,000 fewer than it contained at the end of 2019.

But while many businesses are not employing as many workers as they did 11 months ago, others have increased their employment.

Which industries continue to grow jobs and which industries end up with smaller net employments is very dependent on the direction of the economy moving forward. While a vaccine may improve the revenue outlook for some industries, economists will be looking to see if shifts in consumer behavior may have lasting effects that permanently shift employment patterns in the state.

Information from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Quarterly Census of Employment showed that the largest job losses occurred in the Atlanta metro area although even those losses were not uniform among the metro Atlanta counties. Indicators as to whether job markets rebound to their previous levels even as economic activity increases will be important to watch over the coming year.


Industries adding jobs

Retail. One of the most interesting recoveries has been in retail. Retail jobs declined by 38,100 between the end of December and April, but since then they have rebounded by more than their earlier losses for a net gain in jobs of 20,900 over the 11 months of 2020.

Temporary employment services. Another industry that suffered large layoffs was the employment services industry as companies cut back on temporary help as business revenues declined. From the end of 2019 to April, the temporary help industry saw a drop of 46,300 jobs. With a sharp pickup in temporary jobs from May through August followed by continued, although mor modest, growth in September, October, and November, employment services have actually added 7,600 jobs since the first of the year.

Ambulatory health care services. As the pandemic increased, the public avoided going to health care providers for non-emergency health services, so outpatient centers and any non-critical health care that did not require an overnight hospital stay saw significant drops in business resulting in layoffs. From the end of 2019 through April, the industry saw a net loss of 25,800 jobs in the state. Since April, the industry has added back 33,300 for a net addition of 7,500 jobs since the beginning of the year.

Industries that avoided large variations in employment

While virtually every industry saw some downturn in employment between January and April, there were industries that suffered less disruption.

Warehouse and storage. Warehouses in the state saw a small decrease of 2,700 jobs between January and April but quickly reversed those losses as more business shifted online. For the 11 months ending in November, the industry has added 7,200 jobs.

Finance and insurance. The industry suffered virtually no employment declines in the first four months of the year, and then began adding jobs. As a result the industry in Georgia is up by 6,000 jobs through November.

Consultants. Businesses engaged in management, scientific, and technical consulting saw a small drop in employment (-3,500 jobs) in the first four months, but then added 3,400 jobs over the next seven months for a net loss of only 100 jobs for the 11 months ending in November.

Private colleges and universities. Non-government colleges and universities saw their decrease come later than other industries in the state with their largest employment downturns occurring between May and August but then adding both those jobs and more between September and November. For the 11 months ending in November, the industry is reporting a net increase of 1,300 jobs.

Industries still reporting significant drops in employment

Some of the hardest-hit industries in Georgia are still showing significant employment decreases for the 11 months ending in November.

Food services and drinking places. Restaurants and bars saw a tremendous drop in employment due to a combination of local requirements that temporarily banned indoor dining, as well as people’s reluctance to go out to eat. Through April, the industry saw a loss of 165,600 jobs in Georgia and is still employing 36,200 fewer people than it did at the beginning of 2020.

Accommodations. Similar to food services, businesses such as hotels, saw large drops in their business and cut back employment with job losses of 23,100 through the first four months of 2020. The lodging business has not returned to prior levels with the result that the industry is reporting 11,300 fewer jobs than it recorded at the end of 2019.

Manufacturing. Employment in Georgia’s manufacturing sector dropped 46,000 in the first four months of 2020 and has only partially recovered with a net job loss of 17,800 as of November.

Professional, scientific, and technical services. This industry lost 20,300 jobs between January and April, and still is down by 13,900 seven months later.

Government. State and local government employment has not been immune to the job losses experienced by private industry in Georgia. Over the 11 months ending in November, state government has seen its workforce shrink by 10,500 while local government education has seen a decline of 14,500 jobs.


Wednesday, May 20, 2020

Shelter-in-place orders hit Georgia’s younger workers hardest and calls into question whether they need to change careers

Although Georgia has begun to re-open its businesses, the effects of the state’s shelter-in-place instructions will remain for some time.

While it is true that everyone felt the effects of the order because they could not participate in normal activities such as going out to eat or attending concerts, younger workers were especially vulnerable both because they could not participate in their normal activities as well as the fact that many of the jobs lost because of businesses closing impacted younger workers more than the overall population.

At the end of December, almost 398,000 people were employed in food services and drinking establishments in the state including everything from full-service restaurants to fast-food and bars.

In addition, nearly 52,000 people were employed in the arts, entertainment, and recreation industry in Georgia. The Bureau of Labor Statistics defines this industry as including performing arts (theater, music), sports teams, museums, and recreational activities (golfing, fitness centers, marinas, etc.).

Together, these two groups constitute 449,000 workers or more than 11% of the state’s employment.

Occupations filled with younger workers

While data at the state level is not available, we know that many of the jobs in the industries mentioned above were held by younger workers. 

For example, BLS has produced information showing the average age of workers by occupation and many of the jobs in the two industries have some of the youngest median age workers of all industries in the U.S. To give some perspective, 42.3 was the median age of all workers.

Median worker age, 2019:

·       Entertainment attendants, median age 25.6
Food preparation and serving workers, median age 26.3
Waiters and waitresses, median age 26.6
Cashiers, median age 27.2
Parking lot attendants, median age 28.2
Hotel, motel, and resort desk clerks, median age 29.1
Dishwashers, median age 29.8
Automotive and watercraft service attendants, median age 30.2
Athletes, coaches, umpires, and related workers, median age 30.6
Bartenders, median age 32.7

For workers, the loss of these jobs, even temporarily and even though many of them are relatively low paying, is significant even with their wages being offset by unemployment insurance.

It is likely that even with reopening of restaurants, etc., there will be fewer customers as some will be reluctant to venture out except for necessities.

While workers will be recalled, some jobs will be lost permanently. The travel, entertainment, and hospitality industries have been large employers in the past, but it is likely that they have a more mooted future.

Younger workers, with many decades ahead of them in the labor force, need to think about switching jobs into industries that may offer better long-term opportunities.

What if there is a second wave of covid 19?

Georgia’s Governor Kemp has given instructions to slowly re-open the state even though the number of cases of the coronavirus continues to grow, albeit at a more moderate pace.

If the reopening of these establishments leads to a second wave of the virus, it may be much harder to enforce a second shelter-in-place especially for younger workers who would not have yet recovered economically from the first order.

The shelter-in-place order most certainly saved lives, and if it prevented a total longer-term shutdown of Georgia's economy, then the economic cost was worthwhile.

But its value should not negate the acknowledgement that for younger workers in vulnerable jobs, the future looks very uncertain, and workers in the travel, entertainment, and hospitality industries need to reassess whether they need to transition to other industries with better long-term job prospects.