Looking for a job? Employers are especially eager to find sales and business development specialists, new research shows.
A report from staffing firm Robert Half International reveals that 36 percent of executives plan to hire sales and business development professionals in the upcoming quarter, more than any other field. Just 3 percent of executives expect to cut those positions.
The addition of sales and business development personnel indicates firms are sensing opportunities ahead, said Brett Good, a senior district president with Robert Half. "Businesses want to make sure they have the personnel needed to engage and gain customers and pave the way for growth."
The legal profession is also expected to see a significant increase in hiring, with nearly 30 percent of lawyers expecting to add new staff. In addition, human resources, advertising and marketing and accounting and finance jobs are all projected to see hiring jumps.
Overall, 17 percent of the executives surveyed are planning for staff increases, with just 5 percent expecting to make personnel reductions.
Optimism in their development could be one factor in the hiring increases, according to the research. Nearly 40 percent of those surveyed are very confident in growth prospects for their companies in the fourth quarter, up 16 points from the previous quarter.
"Executives in the United States appear to be increasingly optimistic about the growth prospects of their companies," said Max Messmer, chairman and CEO of Robert Half International. "Businesses may be gearing up to support growth plans for the coming quarter and year."
The study shows those looking for work may find the most success in the transportation industry. Professional-level hiring is anticipated to be strongest in the transportation industry, with 28 of companies expecting to make staff additions before the end of the year. In addition, more than 20 percent of executives in the finance, insurance, real estate and construction industries are planning to make new hires this fall.
When examined by region, executives in the Middle Atlantic states expect the most active hiring in the fourth quarter, with 25percent of executives reporting they plan to add staff.
"The fastest-growing industries in the Middle Atlantic region include health care, manufacturing, pharmaceuticals, nonprofit and retail," Messmer said.
The study was based on surveys of more than 4,000 U.S.-based C-level executives and other senior managers in a variety of fields.