SIA Weekly Chart April 6, 2024

US staffing hours down for second week

US staffing hours declined 1.3% from last week, with both commercial and professional hours declining week over week. Hours were likely impacted by spring break week in many states.

*Indexed value of US staffing hours benchmarked against the week ending January 19, 2019.

US Staffing Indicator down for commercial and professional

Commentary for the week ending April 6, 2024

  • The overall index value for the US staffing industry fell from 83 to 82.
  • The professional staffing indexed value declined from 119 to 117.
  • The commercial staffing index fell from 69 last week to 68 this week.
Indicator values for US Staffing, Professional Staffing, and Commercial Staffing

The graph is interactive.

Year-over-year gap in staffing hours narrows slightly

  • Overall, staffing hours are 13% below the same week last year, a return to where it was two weeks ago.
  • Professional staffing is 12% below the same week in 2023, an improvement over last week’s 14%.
  • Commercial staffing hours are 13% below 2023 levels compared to 14% last week.
Year-over-year change in the US staffing, professional staffing, and commercial staffing weekly hours worked

The graph is interactive.

Staffing Industry Analysts' perspective

Hours worked in the US staffing industry in the week ending April 6th decreased by -13% year-over-year. Commercial staffing hours were down -13% while Professional staffing hours were down -12%.

Year-to-date, the median Y/Y growth rate is -14% for Commercial staffing, -11% for Professional staffing. By comparison, last year’s median Y/Y growth rate was -11% for Commercial staffing and -6% for Professional staffing. This suggests that market conditions for staffing businesses have deteriorated during the first quarter of 2024.

HR_PhenomPeople_HowWeHirePage_HexagonIcon_V3-1656084868497

The US staffing industry is a large and dynamic market that continues to offer big opportunities

The year-over-year decline in the Indicator is directionally in line with the decline in temporary help employment as reported in the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ monthly Employment Situation reports. The April 2024 US Jobs Report (published on April 5th) estimates that employment in the temporary help services industry fell by -6% in March 2024, on a Y/Y basis; and were stable (0.0%) when compared with February 2024. The latest data, along with the SIA | Bullhorn Staffing Indicator, suggest continued weakness in the industry despite strength in the overall economy.

Competitive pressures remain elevated but there are continuing and large opportunities for those staffing firms that have developed a competitive advantage via either their technology, their service offerings, or both. For more discussion of the market dynamics for each skill segment of staffing, SIA Corporate Members are encouraged to read our latest US Staffing Industry Forecast report, published on March 27th.

About the SIA Bullhorn Staffing Industry Indicator

The SIA | Bullhorn Staffing Indicator is a unique tool for gauging near real time weekly trends in the volume of temporary staffing delivered by US staffing firms. Each week the Indicator reports data for the week that ended ten days prior to the release. It reflects weekly hours worked by temporary workers across a sample of staffing companies in the US that utilize Bullhorn’s technology solutions. The Indicator is weighted and benchmarked against US Bureau of Labor Statistics data to approximate the composition of the staffing industry by skill. While the indicator does not presume to perfectly reflect the entire universe of US staffing firms, it does represent a sizable sample of the US staffing industry, reflecting a wide range of occupations, client industry verticals, and geographic footprint that spans the country.

The Indicator can be used by staffing firms to benchmark their past and current performance, as well as a tool for forecasting near term industry trends and outlook.

As the US temporary staffing industry has often functioned as a co-incident indicator for the US labor market and economy, the SIA | Bullhorn Staffing Indicator is also useful for a broader audience of business leaders and investors who are seeking real-time insight.

The Indicator is a joint custom research effort between Bullhorn and industry advisor Staffing Industry Analysts.

Revisions and Technical notes on the SIA | Bullhorn Staffing Indicator 

We note the readings for the last 4 weeks are subject to revision and so should be viewed as preliminary, with the reading for the last recorded week the most likely to be revised in next week’s data release. For further information on how the Indicator has been created and detailed technical notes please refer to the methodology.