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Less than a quarter of companies to hire in 2012: CareerBuilder

December 28, 2011 |  9:57 am

Employment
The employment picture won’t change much next year, with less than a quarter of hiring managers planning to take on more employees.

In a survey of more than 3,000 human resource and hiring professionals, 23% said they’ll add full-time, permanent staff in 2012, down a bit from the 24% who said the same this year, according to job search site CareerBuilder. The percentage of companies that plan to cut staff -– 7% -- hasn’t budged year over year.

Seven in 10 firms either intend to keep their staff at the same size or are unsure of their hiring and layoff plans, according to CareerBuilder. Slightly more employers in the western part of the country will recruit new workers than in other U.S. regions –- but more companies there also plan to downsize their staff. 

And employees jumped ship at 34% of companies this year, with many complaining of low salaries and work overload. Next year, 43% of hiring managers are worried that top talent will resign.

That may be why more than half say current workers will get pay raises in 2012 (mostly in the 1% to 5% range), with new employees at 32% of companies getting higher starting salaries.

There’s still hope that hiring will pick up in the latter half of 2012, according to CareerBuilder Chief Executive Matt Ferguson. Some companies are starting to focus on diversity, with 20% targeting Latino, black and female applicants and 44% intending to pick up new bilingual employees.

“Many companies have been operating lean and have already pushed productivity limits,” Ferguson said in a statement.

Small businesses are more optimistic than most –- a promising sign, since they are responsible for the bulk of job creation in the country. More companies with fewer than 250 employees plan to add workers in 2012 than did this year. Fewer said they’ll reduce head count.

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-- Tiffany Hsu

Photo: Greg Lindstrom / The Muskegon (Mich.) Chronicle

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