The industry that’s added the most total jobs since the recession is staffing, and new data suggests the upward trajectory will continue throughout 2014.

The hiring surge in contingent labor accounts for 15% of all job growth nationally from 2009 - 2013, even though the industry accounts for a relatively small portion of the nation’s workforce.

And in some metropolitan areas, the share of job growth that can be credited to the staffing sector is much, much higher.

More than 2.9 million U.S. workers were employed in temporary jobs in 2013, jumping 28% since 2010 and outpacing the 5% growth rate for all jobs.

Economic Modeling Specialists International (EMSI) stated in this post that since 2009, the contingent labor sector accounted for 65% of the job growth in Cincinnati, 51% in Milwaukee, 46% in Kansas City, and more than 40% even in bigger metros such as Chicago and Philadelphia.

According to new data from CareerBuilder and EMSI, more than 2.9 million U.S. workers were employed in temporary jobs in 2013, jumping 28% since 2010 and outpacing the 5% growth rate for all jobs.

Among occupations that pay in the middle-wage to high-wage range, and are expected to see the greatest percentage increase for temporary job growth in 2014 are:

TOP OCCUPATIONS FOR GROWTH IN TEMPORARY EMPLOYMENT IN 2014 TOTAL TEMP JOBS 2013 TOTAL TEMP JOBS 2014 % CHANGE 2013-2014 MEDIAN EARNINGS PER HOUR1
HUMAN RESOURCES SPECIALISTS 61,642 64,049 4% $26.83
CUSTOMER SERVICE REPRESENTATIVES 90,215 93,041 3% $14.70
CONSTRUCTION LABORERS 72,914 75,183 3% $14.42
ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANTS2 69,398 71,573 3% $15.58
REGISTERED NURSES 56,233 58,000 3% $31.48
BOOKKEEPING, ACCOUNTING AND AUDITING CLERKS 29,326 30,257 3% $16.91
MAINTENANCE AND REPAIR WORKERS, GENERAL 29,260 30,183 3% $16.93
INSPECTORS, TESTERS, SORTERS, SAMPLERS AND WEIGHERS 27,305 28,178 3% $16.57
HEAVY AND TRACTOR-TRAILER TRUCK DRIVERS 23,760 24,527 3% $18.37
MACHINISTS 22,460 23,182 3% $18.99
SALES REPRESENTATIVES, SERVICES, ALL OTHER3 22,300 22,984 3% $24.45
COMPUTER USER SUPPORT SPECIALISTS 17,351 17,895 3% $22.32

 

In a separate CareerBuilder and Harris Poll study, 42% of employers report they plan to hire temporary or contract workers in 2014, up from 40% last year. Of these employers, two in five (43%) plan to transition some temporary employees into full-time, permanent staff.

"Coming off of a hard-hitting recession, companies want more flexibility in their workforce to quickly ramp up and ramp down their businesses as needed. Temporary workers provide that flexibility," said Eric Gilpin, president of CareerBuilder's Staffing & Recruiting Group.

Tags: Staffing, Career Builder, News, Contingent labor, Hiring trends, Temporary Employment, Emsi, Job growth, Harris Poll