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The 2018 Boston Jobs Outlook

The 2018 Boston Jobs Outlook

Whether you’re a candidate looking for a new job in Boston or a growing business in need of a recruitment agency, it’s important that your vision for the future is grounded in the realities facing your industry and the economy. Here we’ve gathered the most recent expectations for employment and hiring in Boston through 2018:

Low Unemployment and a Tightening Labor Market

The unemployment rate in Massachusetts dropped from 3.7 percent in October 2017, to 3.6 percent in November 2017. Between November 2016 and November 2017, the state added 65,200 jobs. November was the 13th month in a row of private sector job growth in Massachusetts.1

Year over year, the leisure and hospitality sector added 11,200 jobs, education and health services added 16,700 jobs, and the professional, scientific, and business services sector added 19,500 jobs. The information sector lost 800 jobs in November and lost 1,700 between November 2016 and November 2017. The financial activities sector lost 1,200 jobs in November, but added 3,300 jobs overall since last November.2

Massachusetts is expected to see low unemployment rates as well as slow and steady economic growth through 2018 and beyond, according to an annual outlook from The New England Economic Partnership.3 The outlook also projects the labor market will tighten further due to the high cost of living in Boston and other areas of the state, dissuading prospective workers from moving to the region. The downturn of workers immigrating to Massachusetts and the US as a whole is also expected to add to the labor shortage. Wages are expected to increase in response to the tight job market, with salary income growth projected to average 4.1 percent each year through 2021.4

Boston ranked 10th on WalletHub’s “Best Places to Find a Job in 2018” list, which was released on January 2, 2018.5

GE and Amazon in Beantown

In 2016, General Electric announced plans to move its headquarters from a Connecticut suburb to South Boston. GE says it was drawn to the city because of the strong tech talent graduating from MIT and other top-tier universities. The industrial manufacturing and technology giant has already relocated to a temporary office in the city while its new $200 million campus is under construction. In November, layoffs were announced among the 250 employees at the interim headquarters, but GE says it still expects eventually to employ 800 people at its new facility, which is slated to open in 2019.6

Amazon has leased a 150,000-square-foot office in Boston. The facility, which is scheduled to open in the spring of 2018, will eventually have about 900 employees focused primarily on voice-activated, AI technologies and logistics.7

Boston is also considered a strong contender for the much sought-after second headquarters for the e-commerce giant. According to an analysis by The Wall Street Journal published in November, Boston is running only behind Dallas as Amazon’s possible future second home.8

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11 "Unemployment Rate at 3.6 Percent - Masschusetts Adds 6,700 Jobs in November." Executive Office of Labor and Workforce Development. Web. 12 Dec 2017.
2 Ibid.
3 Norton, Michael. "Economic Forecast Sees Slow But Continued Expansion for Mass." State House News Service via Web. 28 Nov 2017.
4 Ibid.
5 Bernardo, Richie. "2018's Best Places to Find a Job." WalletHub. Web. 2 Jan 2018.
6 O'Brien, Kelly. "GE Begins Layoffs at Boston HQ, But Impact Unclear." Boston Business Journal. Web. 10 Nov 2017.
7 "Amazon Says 900 Jobs Will Be Added at New Boston Office." Web. 11 July 2017
8 Yee, Erica. "WSJ Picks Boston as a Top Contender For Amazon's Second Headquarters." Web. 14 Nov 2017




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