The current prospects for employment in America are cloudy, if not downright ugly.
But even though at InvestorPlace we concur that it’s a scary time to be scoping new job opportunities — it’s actually a scary time even for those who have a job — we also don’t deem the jobs outlook hopeless. Indeed, scores of solid companies in America are experiencing hiring booms.
Out of these companies, we’ve selected seven to highlight that are hiring right now. Not only are these companies currently looking for new workers, they haven’t engaged in massive layoffs within the past year.
We’re not saying these companies are synonymous with job security. Such guarantees no longer exist; we get that. At least one company on this list might even raise a few eyebrows. However, at the time of this writing, each showed signs of aggressive hiring plans, organic growth and solid operating practices. So, their employees have as good a hope as any that they’re working at a company with a little staying power.
Our baker’s half-dozen range from giants to upstarts and span a variety of industries. Here, in alphabetical order, are seven employers that are hiring now.
Industry: Online Retail
Overview: Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) opened as an online bookseller in 1995 and has grown to become one of America’s largest corporations. Amazon and the scads of other companies that use its e-commerce platform offer millions of products at low prices. Among Amazon’s many diversification moves is its foray into e-readers, with the first version of its popular Kindle coming out in 2007. The company is now also a major player in cloud computing with its Amazon Web Services unit, based on Amazon’s own back-end technology platform.
Job Opportunities: Amazon has been on a hiring spree for several months. Critics say the company is being careless by adding so many jobs in a short period of time, while others deem the plethora of positions a sign of a healthy company. In the past seven days alone, Amazon posted nearly 2,500 available job opportunities, according to data from Glassdoor.
On July 25, Amazon announced a new education initiative designed to “expand the choices available to its employees in their future careers, whether at Amazon or in another industry.” Given Amazon’s role as a lightning rod for criticism, though, the program has received mixed reviews. Still, Amazon’s hiring record is unquestionably robust and looks to remain so.
Industry: Tech/Internet Search
HQ: Mountain View, Calif.
Overview: Since its founding 14 years ago, Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) has grown from a small private company to one of the nation’s largest publicly traded corporations. Like Amazon, it has branched well beyond its original mission of making it easier for people to find whatever they’re looking for on the Internet. It has moved into consumer and commercial applications, hardware and cloud-computing services.
Job Opportunities: Google has more than 35,000 employees and has listed more than 1,700 job openings within the past week. The majority of these positions are tech-related, and the company is known to be choosy when it comes to hiring. If you’re a software engineer with an impeccable professional pedigree, your chances at landing a job at the Internet giant are better than most.
Google also has an array of non-tech related positions available in its accounting, marketing, legal, and business operations departments, among others.
HQ: Austin, Texas
Overview: HomeAway (NASDAQ:AWAY) is one of the world’s largest online destinations for consumers looking for vacation rentals, with sites representing approximately 700,000 paid rental listings throughout 168 countries. The HomeAway portfolio of websites includes HomeAway.com, VRBO.com and VacationRentals.com in the U.S. and myriad domains abroad. In addition, HomeAway operates BedandBreakfast.com
Job Opportunities: HomeAway employs more than 700 people and has posted more than 120 jobs within the past month — more than 30 have been posted within the past seven days. The majority are in customer service, info-tech and marketing, and several are for overseas positions.
Industry: Investment Services
Overview: Morningstar (NASDAQ:MORN) provides data on more than 380,000 investment offerings, including stocks, mutual funds and similar vehicles. It also offers real-time global market data on more than 8 million equities, indexes, futures, options, commodities and precious metals, in addition to foreign exchange and Treasury markets. Morningstar also offers investment management services. As of March 31, 2012, it had $190 billion in assets under advisement or management.
Job Opportunities: Although Morningstar isn’t hiring thousands — it has about 100 job openings — it made our list because it’s one of the few companies in the financial services sector that isn’t launching major layoffs, so the fact it’s hiring at all is somewhat shocking. Morningstar has operations in 27 countries, and it has opportunities for both experienced and entry-level employees.
HQ: Arlington, Va.
Overview: Opower specializes in the development and implementation of energy information software that its utility company clients, such as PPL (NYSE:PPL) and PG&E (NYSE:PCG), offer to their customers to help them use energy more efficiently and ultimately save money on their energy bills. Among this newcomers’ backers are some of the biggest names in venture capital, including Accel Partners and Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers.
Job Opportunities: Opower has experienced tremendous growth since opening in 2007 with two head honchos and one employee. Five years later, the company employs more than 200 people and has posted more than 150 job openings during the last 30 days — 54 in the last week. It has job openings at its Arlington, San Francisco, London, Singapore and Hong Kong locations. Available positions span departments such as engineering, sales, business development, product management and marketing, to name a few.
Industry: Wireless Communications
HQ: San Diego
Overiew: Qualcomm (NASDAQ:QCOM) is a giant in wireless technologies. For more than 25 years, it has been celebrated for its innovative ideas and inventions. While Qualcomm has taken a few stumbles over the past few years, it has remained solid and focused on growth.
Job Opportunities: The wireless technology leader boasts more than 21,000 employees and posted more than 2,300 within the last week. It should come as no surprise that many of the available positions are for engineers, but Qualcomm also has openings in other departments.
Industry: Health Insurance
HQ: Minnetonka, Minn.
Overview: UnitedHealth Group (NYSE:UNH) is a leading health care company that operates through two business units: UnitedHealthcare, which provides health care coverage and benefits services; and Optum, which provides information and technology-enabled health services. UnitedHealth Group serves more than 75 million people worldwide.
Job Opportunities: UnitedHealth employs more than 87,000 and has posted more than 1,545 jobs within the last seven days — 2,809 jobs were posted during the past month. Positions are available in various fields including nursing, customer service, compliance, IT, accounting, engineering and marketing. While the company is hiring in a multitude of locations, it recently announced the creation of 115 new jobs at its Chico, Calif., location.
UNH is also a member of the 100,000 Jobs Mission, a coalition of major U.S. corporations that share the goal of hiring 100,000 transitioning service members and military veterans by 2020.