Teen employment skyrocketed during the summer months of 2019 to the highest number of jobs added since 2001, according to an analysis of non-seasonally adjusted data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics by global outplacement and executive and business coaching firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc. However, the global pandemic of COVID-19 has changed everything and total jobs added for teens may fall well under 1,000,000, according to one workplace authority.

“A month ago, we would have predicted another summer of massive teen hiring. We had one of the tightest labor markets on record, historically low unemployment, and high consumer confidence – the perfect recipe for companies that traditionally hire teen workers, like retail and entertainment venues, to beef up staff,” said Andrew Challenger, Senior VP of Challenger, Gray & Christmas, Inc.

“Everything has changed. Many of these venues have stopped operating as non-essential businesses with reopening timelines in question. Grocery and department stores that are on a hiring binge now come with an inherent risk that did not exist before the outbreak. If we are able to weather this crisis and get businesses back up and running by June, we may see a surge in teen hiring then, however, teen workers, as well as any job seeker, may be much more wary of accepting public-facing roles,” he added.

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