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With comparatively low unemployment rates and increasing demand for jobs in the business services sector, the Seattle area continues to be a promising area for job seekers. The current unemployment rate for Washington State continues to hold steady at 6.8 percent, while the greater Seattle area has a 4.7 percent rate, as of April 2013. According to the Washington State Employment Security Department, Washington doubled its job growth rate from May to June, with 15,700 private-sector jobs created statewide in June.
With a loss of 5,900 government jobs in June, Washington State had a net increase of 9,800 jobs last month. The upward employment trend for job seekers indicates an economy that is rapidly recovering from the Great Recession and Washington has regained 84 percent of the 205,000 jobs lost during that time. With the U.S. unemployment rate of 7.6 percent, the greater Seattle area continues to be a promising area for job seekers.
The business services and construction sectors both saw increases of 4,100 jobs statewide last month. Other sectors also saw significant increases, with leisure and hospitality finding 3,800 new jobs and education and health services finding 1,600 additional positions.
According to executive recruiter Debbie Oberbillig, these employment trends should not come as a surprise. Debbie Oberbillig, PHR, CPC is the founder and executive recruiter from Allen Partners, an employment agency that provides business professionals who use finance and technology to improve corporate results.
Oberbillig has seen a promising uptick in employment in the Seattle area, especially in the business sector.
“There have been significant employment increases for the software, finance and technology sectors. Specifically, finance and accounting have become very competitive and are in high demand in Seattle right now,” she explained. “In 2008, right before the economic downturn, unemployment for anyone with a college degree was at 3.5 percent or less. We’re approaching that percentage again. Experienced professionals with a degree are in high demand now in Seattle.”
In 2009, Oberbillig saw that many companies cut their finance and accounting teams. In 2009-2011, many who worked in these sectors either received very small raises or none at all.
“It’s the perfect storm for finance and accounting candidates right now,” Oberbillg stated. “Companies are trying to add to their staff and they’re trying to replace people at the same time.”
Allen Partners gives back to the Seattle community, with each employee spending 5 percent of their time monthly volunteering for local organizations.
Tracy Campion is a freelance writer covering all things Seattle. Her work can be found on Examiner.com.