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Job Market Expectations for Q4 2021

2020 was an unprecedented year for job markets across the world. Not only did a record number of people lose their jobs, but many other jobs adjusted as the pandemic also took hold and lockdowns went into effect. Now that we’re coming out on the other side of the COVID-19 pandemic, what can be expected as time goes on? Specifically, what can we expect from the last quarter of 2021?

While it’s impossible to make predictions that are 100% accurate, there are a few things that seem certain. Here’s what to expect from the job market as we enter the final quarter of the year: 

Many job markets will rebound — slowly.  

According to a study, payroll gains are expected in all 12 United States industry sectors in the third quarter of 2021, and we can expect that to continue into the fourth. As more and more people get vaccinated and lockdown restrictions lift, most industries have been able to claw their way back to some extent. Still, that doesn’t mean we’re out of the woods. Most experts think things won’t be completely back to normal until at least the end of 2023.  

Remote work will be sticking around. 

There’s no question that remote work will continue to be much more commonplace throughout the remainder of 2021 and beyond. Even if the virus were completely eradicated tomorrow, companies and employees alike have discovered the myriad benefits of remote work. It’s safe to say that it’s here to stay. So, job markets that are able to employ remote workers are expected to continue doing well.  

Lockdowns and shutdowns could occur later in the year. 

The Delta variant of the COVID-19 virus is the wild card in 2021, and may likely still be so into 2022. It’s possible that, if the variant continues to spread, lockdowns and shutdowns could be put in place. So, while job growth is generally good, keep in mind that things could come to a halt just as they did last spring.  

We’ll see slow and steady growth. 

All things considered, job markets are on an upward trend as compared to the middle of 2020. It depends on the industry, but most are rebounding to some extent. Just don’t expect rapid, dramatic growth anytime soon. It’s more likely to be a slow and steady rise as the world continues to adapt to the virus and its variants. 

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