TOPEKA, Kan. – The Kansas Department of Labor Job Vacancy Survey, released Wednesday (9/5), found that during the second quarter of 2012 there were an estimated 36,000 job vacancies statewide, a 17.3 percent increase from 2011.
Three of the five local areas in Kansas experienced these increases in job vacancies. Only Local Area IV (six counties in south central Kansas) and Local Area V (17 counties in southeast Kansas) saw decreases from the previous year.
“This survey reveals movement in the right direction for Kansas job seekers. Fortunately, more jobs are available now than a year ago to meet the needs of the unemployed,” Labor Secretary Karin Brownlee said.
Kansas averaged 88,739 unemployed workers in the second quarter of 2012, an average of 2.5 workers for each vacancy. This is a significant decrease from the 3.2 unemployed persons per vacancy reported in 2011.
The statewide job vacancy rate was 2.7 percent, an improvement from 2.3 percent in 2011. This rate means that for every 100 positions, 2.7 are vacant and 97.3 are filled. Local Area I (61 counties in western Kansas) had the highest job vacancy rate at 3.7 percent. Local Areas IV and V shared the lowest job vacancy rate at 2.3 percent each.
The Educational and Health Services industry reported the largest number of vacancies followed by Leisure and Hospitality and Trade, Transportation and Utilities in second and third. These three industries combined made up approximately 62 percent of the total vacancies reported statewide. Combined food preparation and serving workers, including fast food workers and waiters/waitresses were the two most vacant jobs in the state.
“The 2012 Job Vacancy Survey was greatly successful, as we experienced an outstanding response rate from cooperating Kansas employers,” Jennifer Garrett, Supervisor of the Job Vacancy Survey, said. “This survey provides an overall view of the types of jobs and benefits available in Kansas and is an excellent resource in determining the educational and training demands of our Kansas workforce and the needs of our Kansas employers.”
A total of 71.4 percent of open positions had either no educational requirement or required a high school diploma. Occupations requiring a bachelor’s or advanced degree accounted for approximately 13.7 percent of openings.
The average lowest wage offered in Kansas was $11.73 per hour. This ranged from $9.29 for jobs requiring no education to $29.85 for positions requiring an advanced degree. Occupations needing a bachelor’s degree paid more than twice the positions requiring a high school diploma or GED.
View the full survey results at https://klic.dol.ks.gov. Follow KansasDOL on Twitter and Facebook.