Healthcare Continues To Provide Job Opportunities

TOPEKA, Kansas – In the current sluggish job market, having the right skills can make all the difference. If you want to know what skills are in demand and which industries are hiring in Kansas, take a look at the 2009 Kansas Job Vacancy Survey. It reveals the types of jobs available and in demand to Kansas workers. Again this year, healthcare-related jobs are at the top of the list with the most vacancies and the highest demand for workers.

"This survey is a valuable resource to Kansans searching for work in the state, and to those trying to choose a career path" said Jim Garner, Kansas Secretary of Labor. "It not only identifies the types of jobs Kansas employers are looking to fill, it also provides the educational requirements for those jobs and the expected salary level."

While demand for workers was lower in 2009 than in years immediately prior, the demand for positions in the healthcare field remained steady. Healthcare-related occupations accounted for three of the top 10 occupations statewide reported as "always open." Among occupations requiring a bachelor’s degree, Registered Nurses reported the most job openings statewide.

Looking at the second quarter of 2009, the survey estimated there were 25,781 job vacancies across the state. During the same period of time, Kansas averaged 102,305 unemployed workers, resulting in an average of 4.0 unemployed people for every job vacancy reported. This indicates a labor market with a low demand for workers. The statewide job vacancy rate was 1.9 percent, or 1.9 open jobs for every 100 filled positions. This is a 45.7 percent decrease from the 2008 statewide job vacancy rate of 3.5 percent. The lowest job vacancy rate was in northeast Kansas (1.9 percent) and the highest job vacancy rate was in southeast Kansas (2.2 percent).

Other findings in the survey include:

The education and health services, and the trade, transportation and utilities industries reported the most job vacancies in the state, accounting for 49.2 percent of all vacancies.
The occupation groups with high job vacancy rates were in healthcare support and personal care and service.
The average wage offered for vacancies statewide was $12.63 to $16.92 per hour. Jobs requiring a bachelor’s degree generally paid an average minimum wage that is nearly twice as high as those requiring a high school diploma or GED. Additionally, job vacancies requiring an advanced degree (master’s or above) paid an average minimum wage that is more than three times higher than the average minimum wage of occupations requiring a high school diploma or GED.
For more information regarding the 2009 Kansas Job Vacancy Survey, visit www.dol.ks.gov or call 785-296-5000.