Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Staffing Index Follows Traditional Seasonal Trend

ACSESS recently released the Staffing Index for September 2011 which rose to 98, the closest to the “100″ index standard established in July of 2008. The Staffing Index peaked in October 2008 at 107 then recessionary job losses knocked the industry down and the Index retreated to a low of 65 in May of 2009. The slow but steady climb since the summer of 2009 is an indicator that the economy is reluctantly finding its way.

In a previous blog, I threw cold water on Statistics Canada’s roller coaster reporting of monthly job gains and losses. In the ACSESS press release, ACSESS President Bryan Toffee seemed to concur with my theory that we need to look at the trend of quarterly job creation rather than month to month numbers which are rife with anomalies.

Canadian Staffing Index
“The flat or subtle net rise in index readings of 90, 85 and 92 for June, July and August, respectively, foretold the flat or subtle net increase of 7,000 jobs reported by StatsCan in September and October,” explained ACSESS President, Bryan Toffey, adding that “the Index is supporting the traditional seasonal trends which suggests that employment will peak in October and November then retract through the holiday season and first month of the new year before it starts to climb again.”


Canadian Staffing Index Chart

The Canadian Staffing Index measures the hours of labour performed by a sampling of temporary and contract staffing in the staffing industry. The data collected is the largest sample size done in Canada provided by a number of Canadian staffing companies and accounts for approximately one third of total staffing industry sales. To preserve confidentiality the data is collected by Staffing Industry Analysts; an independent company specialized in staffing industry statistics. Data is available for the months starting July 2008 (the benchmark month) to the current month.

In review of similar Index research from the USA, many experts agree staffing industry employment data serves as an economic indicator. Historically, temporary employment improves as overtime hours increase and as unemployment claims decrease. This means the Index can provide a “near real time” indication of how the Canadian economy is performing.

“The Canadian Staffing Index demonstrates both the changes in the Canadian economy and the volatile nature of the staffing business. It is that ability to provide a flexible workforce that brings tremendous value to our clients.”

Source: (Association of Canadian Search, Employment & Staffing Services)


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