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Know another language? Bilingual jobs are on the rise in Minnesota

If English isn’t your only language, you can find some great opportunities that leverage your unique skills

 

¿Se Habla Español? Chances are good that you do, because speaking a language other than English is at an all-time high in the United States.

As of 2015, one in five Americans—nearly 62 million people—speak a language other than English at home, an increase of 50 percent since 1990 (U.S. Census Bureau).  Here in Minnesota, the number of people speaking more than one language has been on a steady rise, and now nearly 12 percent of prime working age adults speak a language other than English at home (U.S. Census Bureau).  And this population is fairly well-educated. Over half (54 percent) have an associate degree or higher or at least some college.  Classrooms are seeing a dramatic rise in linguistic diversity as well, with 75 percent of Minneapolis classrooms having at least one student speaking a language other than English, according to data from Minneapolis Public Schools. Considering that multilingualism is expected to keep growing in Minnesota, it’s more important now than ever to bring this linguistic diversity into our workplaces.

In Minnesota, the most common languages are Spanish, Hmong, and the Cushite language family including Oromo, Somali, and Sidamo, but nationwide the largest increases have been among speakers of Spanish, Chinese, and Arabic.  These happen to also be the sought-after languages employers hire for, according to the Center for Immigration Studies and New American Economy.  In fact, bilingualism was one of the top five most in-demand hard skills in Minnesota in 2015 according to online job posting data (TalentNeuron Recruit).

These trends mean more job opportunities are opening up for bilingual workers in most states. Between 2010 and 2015, the number of online job postings targeting multilingual or bilingual workers more than doubled in Minnesota, matching trends nationwide.  However, since a peak in the summer of 2015, counts of job opportunities specifically indicating a need for multilingual workers has been on a moderate decline—despite overall counts of job opportunities continuing to rise.

Using TalentNeuron Recruit, we identified the most in-demand occupations for people with bilingual skills, as well as the top cities and companies where you can find these jobs. Explore the lists below to get a picture of the bilingual job landscape in Minnesota.

Top cities hiring bilingual workers

Most Minnesota jobs hiring bilingual and multilingual individuals are located in large metropolitan areas, where the populations themselves tend to be more diverse or growing substantially.

City Number of Bilingual Jobs available in July 2017

Percent of Total Local Jobs available in July 2017

1.    Minneapolis 668 1.8%
2.    Saint Paul 330 2%
3.    Bloomington 104 1.7%
4.    Saint Cloud 83 1.4%
5.    Minnetonka 68 1.7%
6.    Eden Prairie 59 1.1%
7.    Rochester 55 1.1%
8.    Mankato 47 1.7%
9.    Eagan 44 1%
10. Duluth 33 0.7%

Top companies hiring bilingual workers

These employers had the most job opportunities open in July for a bilingual skill set in Minnesota.

  1. Tri-Valley Opportunity Council, Inc.
  2. Wells Fargo
  3. PromoWorks
  4. H&R Block
  5. The Valspar Corporation
  6. CrossMark
  7. U.S. Bank
  8. CSL Plasma
  9. Planned Parenthood
  10. Wireless Vision

Top jobs hiring bilingual workers

Sales and business development has the highest demand currently for bilingual workers, with 817 jobs available in Minnesota in this function area—up 30% from July of last year. These are the top occupations requiring bilingual skills in Minnesota (to the 8-digit SOC level).

  1. Customer Service Representatives
  2. Retail Salespersons
  3. Social and Human Services Assistants
  4. Tellers
  5. Supervisors of Non-Retail Sales Workers
  6. Supervisors of Retail Sales Workers
  7. Merchandise Displayers and Window Trimmers
  8. Registered Nurses
  9. Supervisors of Office and Administrative Support Workers
  10. Healthcare Support Workers

 

Want to read more on this topic? Let us know in the comments.

RealTime Talent to be Featured in Tonight’s Policy and a Pint in Hibbing, MN

RealTime Talent has been invited to participate in the first Policy and a Pint panel event ever to be held in Greater Minnesota. Sponsored by the Citizens League, Target, and MPR, RTT Executive Director Sandee Joppa will be speaking with Roy Smith (IRRRB) and Aaron Brown (instructor at Hibbing Community College and prolific blogger) at Ironworld in Hibbing. The theme of the event will be on the Minnesotan workforce environment. Although Minnesota has one of the lowest unemployment rates in the country, there is still room for improvement. What can be done to ensure that we have a strong workforce now, as well as in the future?

 

For more information, go to: http://www.thecurrent.org/events/2017/05/18/2425/policy–a-pint

To register for this free event, go to: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/policy-and-a-pint-talent-within-range-tickets-33934744735

Follow along on Twitter with #PolicyPint

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Top Trending Entry-Level Healthcare Positions Focus on In-Home Care

It’s no secret that there is huge demand for Home Health Aides across the United States.  The Bureau of Labor Statistics put out a report early last year, and the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) followed suit in June 2016 with their article, “H is for Home Health Aide.” But will these positions be attractive to future workers who will have increasingly more choice in our nation’s job market and are looking for opportunities that offer a living wage and professional advancement?  Maybe not, unless employers start changing what they offer.

As many Minnesotans age and require additional medical attention (the population of Minnesotans over 65 years of age will increase by more than 400,000 people between 2014 and 2024), the need for Healthcare Support Professionals is increasing rapidly. Couple that with a growing preference to receive care in the home rather than in a care facility, the demand for Home Health Aides is skyrocketing.  In 2016, there were approximately 27,550 Home Health Aides working in the state and 4,457 Home Health Aide job openings advertised online; the occupation ranks as the 21st most in-demand position and the 20th most common occupation in Minnesota today.  Demand is projected to grow by 30.1 percent (9,254 jobs) between 2014 and 2024–the third highest growth rate of any occupation in Minnesota. However, these positions offer some of the lowest salaries of any occupation in the healthcare industry, with a median wage of $24,944 and currently advertised positions only offering $20-26k as a starting salary–just barely hitting the threshold for a living wage for a single adult ($11.39 in Hennepin County).  There may be little incentive to encourage workers to take on these roles as the number of job opportunities begins to exceed the number of available workers in the laborforce.

We are already observing high rates of job vacancies in entry-level healthcare positions that require an Associate’s degree or less.  Online job postings in the Twin Cities Metro for low-experience, low-education Licensed Practical Nurses and Home Health Aides have increased more than 7% since 2015, dramatically greater than other entry-level healthcare opportunities.  Hennepin County was home to 24% of the state’s total entry-level healthcare positions in 2016.

As Minnesota continues to face changing demographics, how will employers respond to ensure that they attract the candidates they need? Hopefully, we will start to see rising wages for entry-level healthcare positions.

For more data on healthcare occupations at the Twin Cities and Statewide level, check out our reports page.

Twin Cities Healthcare Report, March 2017

Minnesota Healthcare Report, March 2017

Building Minnesota’s Workforce: Realistic approaches to address our need for more workers

Minnesota will soon face a significant labor shortage. In some key industries, the shortage is already being felt acutely by employers. If unemployment rates, existing racial and ethnic employment disparities, and trends in migration continue, we can expect only an average 0.35% annual increase in employment between 2016 and 2022. This is due in large part to the rapid retirement rate of the baby boomer generation, and the decreasing rate of participation in the labor force of young people.

This graphic, originally developed in October 2016 and now updated with new data and insights, offers a simplified 6-year outlook at the impact of several challenging, yet important goals for the future employment of Minnesotans.

Late last year, RealTime Talent used the data published by the MN Demographic Center to take a deeper look at recent employment trends, migration patterns, and Minnesota’s gross state product. We found that Minnesota will need about 278 thousand additional workers above which we anticipate to be employed by 2022. That means we need between 40 and 45 thousand additional workers each year to maintain our current rate of economic growth.

Modest improvements to this scenario can be obtained through some familiar kinds of interventions in the functioning of the labor force. Namely, increasing labor force participation and focusing on increasing employment rates. However, even if we take the most optimistic outlook, we will likely still fall short at least 200 thousand workers by 2022 across the state. In the years ahead, we will need new and diverse strategies for attracting and retaining talent from both domestic and international sources, as well as creative approaches to increasing the productivity of Minnesota’s existing workforce.

For more information, download the graphic here.

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