Manpower: GR leads nation in summer job market

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — An international staffing agency says the Grand Rapids-area job market will be the strongest in the country this summer.

“We talked to employers in the area and 32% said that they’re going to be hiring. And that’s the best in the nation,” Manpower Northeast Division Vice President Rebecca Dernberger said.

The temporary staffing agency has offices all over West Michigan that supply workers for a variety of jobs.

“The good news is that we’ve got more jobs than we do people right now,” Dernberger said.

Every three months, Manpower issues 18,000 surveys across the country, checking with employers to see if they are hiring or firing. In the Grand Rapids market, the most recent survey found that only 4% of businesses planned to lay people off this summer and 59% were keeping the staff they have now.

“The majority are staying the same, so that’s good news, too,” Dernberger said. ” The really good news is when they’re hiring, but it’s also good news that people aren’t laying off.”

Dernberger said while news that the Grand Rapids area is going through a hiring boom may surprise people, Manpower has seen it coming for awhile. It has built gradually, she said.

“I think Michigan has been such a successful story coming out of the recession. It’s not one silver bullet that makes it successful. It’s a lot of little things that have happened over the years,” she said.

The Manpower survey showed the other Michigan regions will also be among the strongest in the country, with 29% of employers hiring this summer, 65% keeping the workers they have and only 3% laying off.

Dernberger said even Detroit employers are hiring.

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