Job Openings Show Signs of Slowing in August, According to the iCIMS Monthly Hiring Indicator

HOLMDEL, N.J. [September 5, 2019] – U.S. employers continued to increase their hiring, but new job openings slowed in August. Before seasonal adjustments, new hires increased 13.0% and new job openings increased 8.8%, according to iCIMS’ Monthly Hiring Indicator (MHI). This is the smallest rise in openings before seasonal adjustments that iCIMS has seen during the month of August over the last four years.

The MHI is a leading economic indicator published by iCIMS, drawing upon its database of more than 75 million applications and 3 million jobs each year. New hires translate directly into payroll growth, after netting out departures, layoffs and other separations.

“The sky isn’t falling yet,” said Josh Wright, chief economist at iCIMS. “While this month shows that employers are still actively filling open rolls, the slowing in new openings could be one of the first cracks in the armor for the labor market – and the all-important U.S. consumer.”

August 2019 U.S. New Hires and Openings Highlights:

  • Hiring activity before seasonal adjustments saw an uptick across all sectors that iCIMS tracks, with notable increases in retail (18.4%) and manufacturing (13.1%) – in contrast to the weakness indicated by the August ISM manufacturing report.
  • Job openings before seasonal adjustments still saw a modest increase in most industries that iCIMS tracks, but not in financial activities and retail trade.
  • The Northeast showed weaker-than-normal hiring activity (5.2%), which is in line with previous months and suggests that the region’s job market may be less dynamic than the Midwest (16.6%), the West (15.0%) and the South (13.3%), before seasonal adjustments.

About the iCIMS Monthly Hiring Indicator (MHI) Methodology: 

The iCIMS Monthly Hiring Indicator (MHI) measures job openings and new hires, based on iCIMS system data, which is generated by user activity within our platform. iCIMS processes more than 1 million hires per quarter and 75 million applications per year. While iCIMS supports employers across the globe, the MHI is based on U.S. hiring activity only. The figures present both indexes of hiring activity and their month-over-month percentage change, using a fixed panel of customers. To facilitate comparison with benchmark data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, iCIMS publishes its indexes both with and without seasonal adjustments. Data from the MHI has been referenced by Bloomberg, The Wall Street Journal, Fox Business and NBC. To learn more about iCIMS’ MHI, visit iCIMS Hiring Insights, where the latest data and details on the methodology are both available for download.

About iCIMS

iCIMS is a leading provider of talent acquisition technology that enables organizations everywhere to build winning workforces. For over 20 years, iCIMS has been at the forefront of talent acquisition transformation. iCIMS empowers thousands of organizations worldwide with the right tools to meet their evolving needs across the talent journey and drive business success. Its AI-powered hiring platform is designed to improve efficiency, cut recruiting costs and build exceptional experiences for candidates and recruiters. For more information, visit