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United States

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Overall score

Score by Indicator

in 2016 6.6
0 2.5 5 7.5 10

Key drivers

Talent mismatch

Despite the score still being high, the US’ talent mismatch indicator is lower this year than last due to the country’s long term unemployment rate declining.

Overall wage pressure

Overall wage pressure in the US is expected to decline due to slowing real wage growth, with higher inflation offsetting nominal wage growth.

Wage pressure in high-skill occupations

The wage premium attached to high-skill occupations in the US has been falling, reducing occupation-specific wage pressures on the labour market.


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Ground View

Dan Rodriguez, Managing Director, Hays USA

GDP growth remains stable and positive, with 2.1 per cent expected in 2017, and we are seeing significant job growth in industries such as healthcare, construction and technology. However, most of these roles are skilled positions, which will further challenge skill-short markets and could put more pressure on salaries. In IT and technology, the talent mismatch is severely impacting businesses, with an excess of candidates in some areas and a scarcity in others. In other industries, such as construction, the ageing population means increasing retirement rates, which will increase the existing management skills gap. Healthcare, trade and tax reforms from the Trump administration are aimed at creating jobs, but it is too early to know the long-term impact of those changes.
Dan Rodriguez, Managing Director, Hays USA

Country Profile

The United States’ continued recovery from the global recession has had a mixed impact on the labour market overall.

In recent years, the US employment rate has decreased, leaving a smaller pool of available workers. However, wage growth in the current recovery has been relatively slow, which suggests that employers are not yet feeling overly constrained by the inability to find employees.

Looking to the future, the US faces some powerful structural challenges. The baby boomers are beginning to retire and this may make it harder for employers to find experienced staff. At the same time, key indicators of labour market fluidity, including people’s willingness to change jobs and move between sectors, seem to be declining.

Key skills in demand

  • Software developers
  • Cyber security professionals
  • Construction estimators
  • Clinical research associates
  • Big data professionals (data analysts/scientists)

News and Press Materials

Dan Rodriguez, Managing Director, Hays USA