State of the Recruiting Industry: 50 Stats You Need to Know in 2018

Knowledge is power, that’s what conventional wisdom says — and we have to agree. That’s why we’ve compiled this list of the 50 most important stats about recruitment you need to know to make smart business decisions in 2018 and beyond.

Lay of the recruiting land

  1.  There are about 20,000 staffing and recruiting companies operating about 39,000 offices in the U.S. (American Staffing Association)
  2. Total staffing and recruiting industry sales increased 1.8 percent to$150 Billion in 2016 (2017 figures not available yet) (American Staffing Association)
  3. The global recruitment process outsourcing market is predicted to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 17.66 percent from 2017 to 2021 (Technavio)
  4. The entire recruitment market is estimated to be worth more than $200 billion worldwide (Forbes)
  5. The unemployment rate in January 2018 remained steady at 4.1 percent, and employment continues to trend up in construction, restaurants/bars, healthcare, and manufacturing (Bureau of Labor Statistics)
  6. 45 percent of recruiters in the U.S. and Canada work more than 45 hours a week (SocialTalent)
  7. 62 percent of recruiters received performance-related pay in 2017, just about the same as 2016’s number (63 percent) (SocialTalent)


  1.  61 percent of recruiters expect to hire more people in 2018 than they did in 2017 (Indeed)
  2. 29 percent expect to maintain current headcount (Indeed)
  3. 10 percent plan to reduce their hiring (Indeed)
  4. 56 percent of employers are hiring to support business growth (Indeed)
  5. 13 percent are hiring to backfill (Indeed)
  6. 42 percent of millennials expect to change jobs at least every 1-3 years (Jobvite)
  7. The average recruiter sources 225 candidates for a single hire, an overall conversion rate of 0.4 percent (SocialTalent)
  8. The average top-performing recruiter, however, sources 91 candidates for a single hire, an overall conversion rate of 1.0 percent (SocialTalent)
  9. The average company spends about $4,000 per candidate to decide if someone is right for a job (Deloitte)
  10. 75 percent of the candidates submitted by recruiters are interviewed (SocialTalent)
  11. The average open position receives more than 150 resumes (Bersin)
  12. Organizations that invest in a strong candidate experience improve their quality of hires by 70 percent (Brandon Hall Group)


  1.   20 percent of employers say executive-level positions are hardest to fill (Indeed)
  2. 65 percent of recruiters said talent shortage is their biggest hiring challenge (Jobvite)
  3. 55 percent of recruiters don’t have mobile career websites (Jobvite)
  4. 42 percent of employers are worried they won’t get the talent they need in 2018 (Indeed)
  5. By 2020, there will be a global shortfall of approximately 85 million qualified workers (McKinsey)

Artificial intelligence & tech

  1. 66 percent of candidates are comfortable interacting with a chatbot to schedule and prepare for interviews (Allegis)
  2. 41 percent of companies have either fully implemented or made significantprogress in adopting AI technologies, and another 35 percent report pilot programs in existence (Deloitte)
  3. Job seekers want to see more virtual reality and job matching technology in their job search, while employers plan to integrate more gamification in their recruitment process (CareerArc)
  4. 96 percent of recruiters believe AI can greatly enhance talent acquisition and retention (Josh Bersin in Forbes)
  5. The average HR manager loses 14 hours a week to manually completing tasks that could be automated (Ideal)

Social media, job boards & messaging apps

  1.  41 percent of recruiters used Facebook to source candidates in 2017 (SocialTalent)
  2. 94 percent of recruiters used LinkedIn to source candidates in 2017 (SocialTalent)
  3. 23 percent of recruiters used Twitter to source candidates in 2017 (SocialTalent)
  4. 7 percent of recruiters used Instagram to source candidates in 2017 (SocialTalent)
  5. 64 percent of employers paid for their recruiters’ LinkedIn accounts in 2017, down from 88 percent in 2016 (SocialTalent)
  6. 71 percent of recruiters used messaging tools in 2017: Skype(38 percent), WhatsApp (16 percent) and iMessage (11 percent) (SocialTalent)
  7. The most active sectors for recruiting are architecture and engineering where 82 percent plan to hire, IT and telecom companies (75 percent) and professional services firms (71 percent) (Indeed)
  8. 48 percent of job seekers used social media in their most recent job search (Jobvite)
  9. Only 55 percent of retail companies and only 41 percent of educational organizations plan to recruit more people next year (Indeed)
  10. 73 percent of companies said employee referrals were the most common source of new hires; job sites came in at a close 71 percent, with recruitment and staffing firms coming in at 51 percent (Indeed)
  11. Social media and social recruiting software was the number one planned technology investment for 2017 (CareerArc)
  12. 43 percent of recruiters used paid job boards on a regular basis in 2017, as opposed to 37 percent in 2016 (SocialTalent)
  13. 12 percent of recruiters said they filled more than half their positions via job boards (SocialTalent)

Job seekers

  1.   20-24 percent of Americans change jobs every year (Bureau of Labor Statistics), which means more than 41 million people are searching for jobs and being recruited into jobs every single year in the U.S. alone
  2. 71 percent of job seekers ranked workplace flexibility as the top benefit that would most attract or retain them as employees, followed by health and wellness perks (58 percent) and professional development perks (48 percent) (CareerArc)
  3. Candidates don’t want to complete an application that will take longer than 20 minutes to fill out (Careerbuilder)
  4. When it comes to job searching, 42.9 percent of people search by job board, 32.1 percent search career sites, and 6.9 percent check referral programs (Jobvite)
  5. 74 percent of all workers are satisfied with their jobs, but two-thirds of those are still open to new employment opportunities (Jobvite)
  6. More than 45 percent of candidates never hear back from a company at which they applied (Talent Board)


  1.  The top roles recruiters will be hiring for:sales, operations and engineering (LinkedIn Global Recruiting Trends 2017)
  2. Top trends for the future of recruiting:
    1. More diverse candidates – 37 percent
    2. Focus on soft skills assessment – 35 percent
    3. Investment in innovative interviewing tools – 34 percent
    4. Company Mission Used as a Differentiator – 33 percent
    5. Big Data – 29 percent(LinkedIn Global Recruiting Trends 2017)

TrackerRMS: End-to-end software solution for recruitment companies

Now that you have the latest important data about recruiting in 2018, learn about the leading software solution for recruiting firms. TrackerRMS combines cloud-based recruitment, applicant tracking and CRM software with unparalleled support to empower your employees to build better relationships, make more deals get the data you need to make smart business decisions. Learn more about the TrackerRMS solution.

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