Staffing firms created 11,400 new jobs in March, up 0.4% from February and 5.3% from March 2014, according to seasonally adjusted data released today by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Year-to-year staffing job growth averaged 5.7% over the past 12 months.
Nonseasonally adjusted BLS data, which estimate the actual number of jobs in the economy, indicated that temporary help employment increased 1.5% from February to March. Year-to-year, there were 5.4% more staffing employees in March than in the same month last year.
“Businesses continue to be very strategic about increasing the size of their permanent and flexible workforces,” said Richard Wahlquist, president and chief executive officer of the American Staffing Association. “Job seekers need to ensure that their résumés clearly reflect their skills and experience in a way that is most relevant to today’s employment market.”
Total U.S. nonfarm payroll employment increased by 126,000 jobs in March (seasonally adjusted), BLS reported. Incorporating revisions for January and February, the data showed that monthly job gains averaged 197,000 over the past three months, significantly less than the average of 269,000 for the prior 12 months.
The unemployment rate held at 5.5% in March—down 1.1 percentage points from a year ago.