EMSI Report Covid-19: Changing Occupation Demand
There has been a decline in job postings of over 200,000 since 7th March, and EMSI have looked at the effect this has had on occupations, regions, and the correlation between confirmed Covid-19 cases and the fall in demand. Today we again look at occupations, but whereas that first piece looked at the high level 1-digit Standard Occupation Classifications (SOC), we can now dig deeper to look at much more specific occupations at the 4-digit SOC level.
Although there has been a massive slump in employer demand generally over the past few weeks, here are the key questions we are looking to answer:
- Are there any particular occupations where demand has been hit really badly?
- Are there any occupations where demand has actually grown?The following chart helps us answer these questions:
There are some fascinating data points here. On the decline side, it comes as little surprise to see some of the biggest falls in demand being for Chefs, and Kitchen and catering assistants. As restaurants, cafes and pubs are all closed, hiring for these jobs was likely to dry up, and we see this happening with about 5,400 fewer postings for Kitchen and catering assistants, and 8,300 fewer postings for Chefs since 7th March.
What may be more surprising is to see nurses on the list. Surely, we would expect to see an increase in demand for nurses, not less? There are a couple of good reasons why this is happening. Firstly, although nurses are clearly in need at this time, hospitals are likely to be overstretched and entirely new recruits are not actually going to help with that problem in the short term. Secondly, managing the recruitment and on-boarding process for new nurses may well be a distraction at this time. So lots of hospitals may well have halted the recruitment process for a time, choosing to work with the nurse they already have, rather than create the distraction of bringing in new people.
At the other end of the scale, there are clearly very few occupations that are seeing an increase in demand. It seems odd to see the likes of Musicians in the mix, but this really is simply because the numbers there are so small (an increase of 4 since 7th March), and as the days and weeks go on, we should expect to see other occupations beginning to pick up.
What we also see, however, is the increase in Elementary storage occupations, which are defined by the Office for National Statistics as:
“Workers in this minor group load and unload cargo from ships, boats and barges, supply berthed ships with water, oil and fuel, load, unload and convey furniture, goods and other equipment in and around warehouses, depots and similar establishments, and accompany motor vehicle and other road vehicle drivers.”
As people are relying to a large extent on home deliveries, it’s easy to see why this occupation is one of the few that has seen some growth over the past few weeks.