Published Tuesday, March 12, 2019

West Palm Beach, Fla. (March 11, 2019) – Palm Beach County’s unemployment rate for January dropped to 3.9 percent from 4.0 percent a year ago.  In addition, for the third consecutive month, there are more job openings in Palm Beach County than unemployed people – 31,919 job openings in the county in January vs. 28,549 unemployed people, according to the latest monthly reports released today by CareerSource Palm Beach County and the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity (all numbers not seasonally adjusted).

January 2019 is the third time that the number of open jobs exceeded the number of unemployed people in records going back to 2005. Palm Beach County’s unemployment rate for January also matched that for the state and fell below the 4.4 percent national rate, continuing a two-year streak where the county’s rate has stayed below or matched the national rate.

“Our job market remains among the brightest in nearly 30 years – it’s a great time to look for a new job or advance to a better job,” said Steve Craig, president and CEO of CareerSource Palm Beach County, the nonprofit organization chartered by the state to lead workforce development in Palm Beach County. “Palm Beach County gained 13,344 jobs over the year – a 2.3 percent increase – compared to 2.1 percent nationally.”

Over the past 12 months, the county’s unemployment rate ranged between 3.0 and 4.0 percent, primarily reflecting seasonal fluctuations. January’s rate is about one-third of what it was at the 11.6 percent peak unemployment rate of the Great Recession in summer 2010.

Job growth by industry sector: On a percentage basis, job gains in January were led by the construction sector with 5.3 percent over-the-year job growth, more than the statewide change of 4.7 percent.

The number of jobs in four sectors – construction, manufacturing, leisure/hospitality, and government– grew faster than statewide over the year. There were job gains in all sectors except for other services and information.

By the numbers, over-the-year job gains/losses in Palm Beach County were:

Industry                                                               Change from previous month

Professional/business services                   +4,200 jobs

Leisure/hospitality                                          +3,500 jobs

Education/health services                            +2,000 jobs

Construction                                                      +1,900 jobs

Financial Activities                                           +1,200 jobs

Government                                                      +1,000 jobs

Manufacturing                                                  +900 jobs

Trade/Transportation/Utilities                   +600 jobs

Other services                                                   -600 jobs

Information                                                        -300 jobs


Top 8 most advertised jobs available: The Conference Board produces a monthly report of real-time labor demand captured through online job advertisements. The latest report shows that there were advertisements for 28,134 full-time and part-time jobs in Palm Beach County in January. The top 8 most advertised jobs in the county are for:

Registered nurses

Retail salespeople

First-line supervisors of retail sales workers

Customer service representatives

First-line supervisors of food preparation and serving workers


Software developers

Bookkeeping, accounting, and auditing clerks

Professional Placement Network kicks off:  CareerSource Palm Beach County has opened a new Professional Placement Network (PPN) at its Central Career Center, 3400 Belvedere Road, in West Palm Beach to better serve professionals. The PPN provides specialized services for professionals who have been displaced, in career transition, or are looking for new career growth opportunities. The program is designed to assist individuals holding a 4-year degree and $47,000 minimum salary in their most recent position. Classes are held from 9 a.m. to noon over 3 consecutive days each month. The initial classes, held in January and February, had 30 graduates from various industries such as information technology, business development, sales, youth services, marine biology, property management and construction. Subsequent classes are scheduled for:

  • March 19-21, 2019
  • April 22-24, 2019
  • May 21-23, 2019

There is no cost to participants, but you must register in advance to attend at:

Whatever career you would like to pursue, the staff at CareerSource offers classes and facilities for job searches, grants for job skills training for those who qualify, career development and consulting. During the past five program years, CareerSource Palm Beach County assisted more than 92,000 residents find employment ranging from entry level to executive suite, with salaries from these jobs creating $2.1 billion in annual average wages. CareerSource also has awarded $13 million in grants to area businesses and employees for training and educational assistance during that time. 

Services for employers: CareerSource provides a comprehensive package of services to help businesses compete in today’s challenging marketplace. CareerSource absorbs the cost of most of these services including recruitment, assessments and referrals of qualified job candidates; space and staff assistance for screening/interviewing candidates; and grants for training employees. 

Services for career seekers: Our career centers in West Palm Beach, Delray Beach and Belle Glade offer classes and facilities for job search, career development and consulting; and grants for job skills training – all at no cost. Schedules of workshops and employer hiring events are posted at From this same home page, you also will find our mobile-friendly Virtual Career System with online tools and resources to access our programs and services 24/7.

Next monthly employment reports for Florida and Palm Beach County: State and local employment reports for Feb. 2019 are scheduled for release on March 22. At the beginning of each year, there is a lag in reporting Jan. and Feb. employment data as the government recalibrates historical data factoring in new population inputs and revisions to economic data, creating changes in the original statistics.



Aerojet Rocketdyne Bank of America BB&T CareerSource Centennial Bank
DePuy Synthes Power Tools, a Johnson & Johnson Company Engel & Volkers Palm Beach Equestrian Center Florida Crystals Corporation FPL
GL Homes GliddenSpina + Partners Greenberg Traurig Gunster Hardrives, Inc.
HCA Palm Beach Hospitals Hedrick Brothers Construction J.C. White JP Morgan Chase LRP Publications
MBAF Minto Communities, LLC NCCI NextGen Mgmt dba DxWeb Management, LLC Nova Southeastern University
Palm Beach Aggregates, LLC Palm Beach County Board of County Commissioners Palm Beach Park of Commerce Pratt & Whitney (A United Technologies Company) Raymond James Financial Services/Boynton Financial Group, Inc.
RSM South Florida Business & Wealth Magazine South Florida Business Journal TD Bank Tortoise Properties
Wells Fargo & Company Wexford Capital