18 Aug Wisconsin's tech employment shows increase, HR firm reports
Madison, Wis. – Wisconsin is showing increasing demand for technical employees, according to a study released on Thursday by the human resources firm Adecco.
In Adecco’s “Where the Jobs Are” report, which is released in advance of state unemployment reports, the company states that the Milwaukee and Madison areas have experienced a growth in technical positions in the manufacturing, financial, bioscience and banking industries.
Scott Zorn, Adecco Technical area vice president in Wisconsin, said the report is based on interviews with Adecco recruiters working with at least 100 Wisconsin companies that are Adecco clients. Zorn estimated that while they deal with a diverse set of companies – ranging from start-ups to established firms – the overall growth falls between 10 and 25 percent.
In central Wisconsin this growth is attributed to the academic presence of the University of Wisconsin-Madison and the companies that come from its research. Southeastern Wisconsin’s growth is a response to a gradually improving economy, motivating companies to start new projects and restart delayed ones.
“It’s such a cycle with employees when the economy is bad,” Zorn said. “Now we’re starting to see the push to reinvest and move forward in bringing in direct-hire employees.”
The report said companies are looking for design engineers, web development specialists, engineering technicians and technical support staff. Many companies are hiring temporary IT help desk and support staff to be converted into full-time employees, and creating temporary and direct-hire positions for engineers.
Zorn said that companies are also strengthening their upper management, making new employment decisions at the vice president and CEO level. Recruiters are also looking both inside and outside Wisconsin for their employees, typically hiring engineers native to Wisconsin and recruiting IT employees to come into the state.
“I think they’re just looking for the cream of the crop and they’re willing to pay top value for that,” Zorn said.
A Thursday statement by Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development Secretary Roberta Gassman said that Wisconsin’s unemployment rate for July was 4.7 percent, the lowest July rate in four years and a 0.3 percent drop from June. The Wisconsin Labor Force Summary addendum to that statement said professional and business services jobs were now at 259,400, an increase of 1,200 from last month and 3,200 from last year.
This gain was primarily in administrative support and waste management, which had an increase of 4,600 from last year. Science and technology services saw a drop of 600 from 2004 and management of companies and enterprises saw a drop of 800.