60% of employers have reduced job openings in the last month

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In the last month, amid the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic in the U.S., 60% of employers have reduced job openings, with almost 25% of employers closing all of their postings, according to job searching platform Glassdoor.

When looking at its data, Glassdoor found that job openings on its site had decreased by 20.5% between March 9 and April 6, bringing its number of employment opportunities to 4.8 million. That number, according to Glassdoor, marks the lowest number of openings on its platform since February 2017.

“For perspective, the U.S. is on track to lose as many job openings on a percentage basis in the first four weeks of the crisis as we did in the first nine months of the Great Recession,” Glassdoor economist Daniel Zhao wrote in a blog post. 

He explains to CNBC Make It that according to the data, Glassdoor has seen a decrease in job openings across all 50 states and across all industries. In total, he says, roughly 1 in 5 job openings have closed on Glassdoor’s platform since March 9, with the travel and tourism industry being hit the hardest. Over the last month, the industry has seen a 73.1% drop in job openings. 

“Rarely do you ever see such a large decline in economic data because that indicates an almost complete shutdown in hiring activity for that industry,” he says. 

With travel bans taking effect in the U.S. and around the world, major airlines including Delta, American and many others have not only cut flight schedules, but have also implemented hiring freezes due to lack of demand for travel services. 

Other industries like retail, food services and arts and entertainment have also been hit hard by the coronavirus as many restaurants, movie theaters and clothing stores remain closed. Over the past month, according to Glassdoor data, job openings in the arts and entertainment sector have decreased by 46.3%, job openings in retail have decreased by 21.2% and job openings in food services have decreased by 17.5%.

The supermarket industry saw the smallest decline, with only an 8.8% drop in job openings over the last month. This is largely due to supermarkets being considered an essential business, leading many employers in this sector to expand hiring in order to meet demand. 

Government-related job openings also saw a smaller drop over the last month, with an 11% decrease in hiring. This smaller decline in employment opportunities, according to Glassdoor, is due to state and local governments still hiring for public health workers, as well as workers in their unemployment offices and call centers. 

One positive note in the employment data, Zhao says, is that the availability of remote jobs is increasing. Though Glassdoor saw a 10.8% drop in remote job openings over the last month, hiring for remote workers is still up by 8.7% from last year. 

“I think one thing folks have speculated will change as a result of this crisis is the availability of remote working and the availability of work-from-home benefits,” he says. “This is definitely an early indicator that we’ll likely see access to those options increase.”

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