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By the Numbers: Job-to-Job Flows

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By Carson Gorecki
August 2021

Spurred by the necessity of job losses, burnout, or simply the desire to try something new, thousands of workers made the leap to a different industry in 2020. The U.S. Census' Job-to-Job (J2J) Flows Explorer allows data lovers to dive deeply into worker movements in each state. Here are some Minnesota numbers from the J2J program:

83,563: Is the number of Minnesotan workers that switched jobs in the 2nd quarter of 2020, just as the initial impacts of the pandemic became clear. The number of job switchers fell considerably from 133,848 a year previously, perhaps an indication of the uncertainty that spread throughout the economy in the spring of 2020.

63%: Of the workers that took new jobs, 63% ended up in a different industry and 37% opted for a new job but in the same industry. These figures matched the shares of industry switchers and stayers in both 2018 and 2019.

36%: Is the share of Healthcare and Social Assistance job-switchers that changed industries, the second lowest share behind Construction. Only 31% of Construction workers that switched jobs took jobs in another industry. Finance and Insurance was the only other industry where the majority (55%) of job switchers opted to stay.

92%: Is the share of switchers in the Mining industry that opted to move to another industry. The industries with the next highest shares of workers leaving were Management (89%), Arts, Entertainment, and Recreation (87%), and Information (84%).

3.3%: Is the number of industry switchers as a share of total employment in the state. From 2017 to 2019 industry changers represented 4.5% of total employment, a full percentage point greater than the 2020 share. The decreasing share again was perhaps an indication of the tentativeness of the workforce to make a big change during heightened uncertainty.

11,609 and 13,029: Is the number of workers that switched jobs from and to Healthcare and Social Assistance jobs, respectively. The Healthcare and Social Assistance industry accounted for 13.9% of switchers from all industries and 15.6% of switchers to all industries. Yet in each case the number of switchers to and from the Healthcare jobs represented less than 3% of that industry's total employment. Accommodation and Food Services on the other hand, accounted for 5.2% of statewide employment, but much higher shares of total switchers from (13.2%) and total switchers to (8.1%). Administrative Support and Waste Management Services had high concentrations of both types of switchers relative to that industry's share of total employment.

Table 1: Job Switchers by Industry in Minnesota, Q2 2020

Industry Number of Job Switchers From Number of Job Switchers To Net Employment Change from Job Changers Switchers From as a share of industry employment Switchers To as a share of industry employment Percent of Job Switchers who Changed Industries
Mining, Quarrying, and Oil and Gas Extraction 190 136 -54 3.6% 2.6% 92.1%
Management of Companies and Enterprises 1,547 2,321 +774 1.8% 2.7% 88.6%
Arts, Entertainment, and Recreation 2,238 1,749 -489 8.5% 6.7% 86.5%
Information 1,038 1,156 +118 2.3% 2.5% 83.5%
Educational Services 5,316 2,150 -3166 2.4% 1.0% 78.5%
Wholesale Trade 2,805 2,958 +153 2.3% 2.4% 76.1%
Admin Support and Waste Management Services 8,895 8,675 -220 8.0% 7.8% 75.7%
Other Services (except Public Administration) 2,581 2,214 -367 4.2% 3.6% 74.5%
Agriculture, Forestry, Fishing, and Hunting 830 1,000 +170 3.6% 4.3% 73.9%
Real Estate and Rental and Leasing 838 1,001 +163 2.6% 3.1% 73.2%
Accommodation and Food Services 11,033 6,752 -4,281 8.3% 5.1% 70.3%
Transportation and Warehousing 2,990 2,735 -255 2.9% 2.7% 69.2%
Professional, Scientific, and Technical Services 4,301 4,175 -126 2.8% 2.7% 66.1%
Manufacturing 6,532 7,535 +1,003 2.2% 2.5% 63.9%
Retail Trade 11,163 11,006 -157 4.4% 4.4% 63.7%
Utilities 115 171 +56 0.9% 1.3% 63.5%
Public Administration 2,041 2,717 +676 1.6% 2.1% 63.3%
Finance and Insurance 2,456 3,539 +1,083 1.7% 2.4% 45.0%
Health Care and Social Assistance 11,609 13,029 +1,420 2.5% 2.8% 36.4%
Construction 5,045 8,544 +3,499 3.8% 6.5% 30.8%
Total, All Industries 83,563 83,563 0 3.3% 3.3% 63.1%
Source: U.S. Census Job-to-Job Flows

Job-to-job flows data allow us a view into the churn below the surface of the labor market. They are a useful tool that can illuminate trends otherwise obscured by net employment movements. As these data are updated through the end of 2020, we will likely learn even more about how industries evolved in response to pandemic stressors.

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