U.S. job growth is looking good for the spring of 2015, especially if you live in or around Boise, Idaho.
That’s the takeaway from the latest Manpower Employment Outlook Survey, a quarterly assessment done by the Milwaukee staffing firm Manpower Group. As Forbes reports, the company has just released its Q2 data, and 22 percent of the 18,000 employers surveyed across the country said they plan to add staff in the next three months. The city with the best projected growth is Boise, where 32 percent of the polled employers said they’ll add jobs this spring.
Why does Boise top the list? According to Forbes, the city is getting a major boost from companies like steel manufacturer Gayle Manufacturing and Diversified Fluid, which deals in blending and distributing chemicals. They plan to add 100 and 50-60 jobs, respectively. Meanwhile, SkyWest airlines, based in Utah, is building a new maintenance facility in Boise, and that promises to bring another 100 jobs to the area.
It all adds up to quite a jump from the first quarter, when only 22 percent of employers in the Idaho city reported plans to expand staffing.
“Once you set foot in Boise, you can literally see the growth,” says Sunny Ackerman, vice president at Manpower’s western division.
Rounding out the top five are Jacksonville, Florida; Grand Rapids, Michigan; Milwaukee, Wisconsin; and Seattle, Washington. In Jacksonville, Forbes reports, the city has experienced a major comeback, as the 2008 recession created a housing bust. Now, construction jobs are hot, and thanks to new shopping areas like the St. John’s Tower Center, which houses an Apple Store and Nordstrom, retail is also on the rise.
The city with the weakest projected spring job growth is Oklahoma City, where only 10 percent of employers said they’ll hire in the coming quarter. Here, Forbes reports, the slowdown stems from the cyclical nature of the energy sector, which has experienced a major downturn in recent months. Oklahoma City’s economy is rooted in oil and natural gas, and according to Manpower Regional Vice President Steven Clay, the Q2 data isn’t that unexpected.
“We deal with this all the time,” Clay says. “When oil prices are up, things are great, and when they’re down we see the layoffs that come with it. You’re probably looking at a year of this stuff.”