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Austin punches in with one of the highest hiring rates in the U.S., says survey

Austin punches in with one of the highest hiring rates in the U.S.

women working in an office
More full-time jobs are on the way. Getty Images

Many employers in Austin are going full speed ahead when it comes to hiring full-time employees.

New survey data from staffing firm Robert Half shows 51 percent of companies in Austin plan to add new full-time jobs in the second half of 2021, compared with 61 percent in the Dallas area and 50 percent in Houston.

Among the 28 U.S. cities in the Robert Half survey, those with the highest percentage of employers who expect to staff up this year are San Diego (62 percent), Dallas (61 percent), and Atlanta and Los Angeles (58 percent each). Nationally, the number was 51 percent. Managers at companies with at least 20 employees participated in the survey.

“Hiring is happening across the board, and competition for talent is intensifying. Simultaneously, job seekers are becoming more discerning when evaluating opportunities,” Paul McDonald, senior executive director at Robert Half, says in a July 13 news release. “With these two forces at play, employers need to exceed candidates’ expectations or risk losing them to better offers.”

To attract new workers, 53 percent of Austin employers surveyed by Robert Half indicate they’re handing out signing bonuses, versus 52 percent in DFW and 56 percent in Houston. The same figure across the 28 cities in the survey was 48 percent.

This hiring surge comes amid substantial workforce turnover this year, triggered in large part by the COVID-19 pandemic. A whopping 80 percent of Austin employers say they’ve experienced increased turnover this year, compared with 71 percent in DFW and 75 percent in Houston. Nationally, the number was 73 percent.

“Professionals with in-demand skills often have their pick of jobs,” McDonald says. “To stand the best chance of winning over top candidates, employers need to modernize and minimize role requirements, move quickly, and make the most competitive offer possible from the start.”