Skip Navigation

Public Policy

Your Talent Your Future

Call Us: (404) 880-9000

About Your Talent Your Future

With an ever-tightening labor market in Georgia and across the nation, developing a talented workforce with the right skills to meet the demands of business remains one of the top factors in building a thriving economy. Given the importance of this issue for employers and jobseekers alike, the Metro Atlanta Chamber and Accenture partnered again in 2019 to update the Your Talent Your Future report.

Like the two previous reports, this version examines Georgia’s supply and demand for entry-level job seekers (0-2 years’ experience), identifies specific talent and skill gaps, reviews the progress made and offers solutions to address the state’s workforce needs. This report identifies and examines these gaps using data from Burning Glass and the National Center for Education Statistics (IPEDS). Below are highlights of the report.

Demand Overview


Georgia Job Postings by Year (2014 - 2018)

While the national job posting rate seems to be growing at a faster pace, the nation saw a 3% decline in job postings between 2016 and 2017. Georgia saw an increase of 2% over the same period.

Source: Burning Glass 11/2019 


Georgia's Top Industries

Health Care and Social Assistance continues to hold the spot as the top industry in Georgia based on job postings, followed by Retail Trade; Professional, Scientific and Technical Services; and Manufacturing. In 2018, Health Care and Social Services made up 17% of all job postings in the state, compared to just 9% for Retail Trade; 8% for Professional, Scientific and Technical Services; and 7% for Manufacturing.

Georgia’s fastest-growing industry, based on job postings, over the last five years is:

  • Construction, with job postings increasing 70% from 2014-2018, followed by

  • Educational Services increasing 63%

  • Admin Support and Waste Management increasing 55%

  • Transportation and Warehousing increasing 51%

Job postings in the Information industry decreased 3% between 2014 and 2018.

Number of Job Postings in Georgia (2014-2018)
Source: Burning Glass, Nov. 2019. Industry sectors are based on 2-digit NAICS codes.Admin Support, Waste Mgmt, Remediation is abbreviation of Administrative and Support and Waste Management and Remediation Services. Other Industries include Arts, Entertainment, and Recreation; Utilities; Mining, Quarrying, and Oil and Gas Extraction; Management of Companies and Enterprises; Agriculture, Forestry, Fishing and Hunting.Industry Not Specified represents the balance of job postings where the employer did not specify industry in the job posting.

Georgia's Top Occupations

Since the last report:

  • Registered Nurses remain the most in demand occupation as measured by job postings.

  • Heavy and Tractor-Trailer Truck Drivers have moved into the number two spot.

  • Software Developers came in at number three.

Despite registered nurses and truck drivers being the top two most demanded occupations, both showed significant declines in job postings from 2017-2018 with decreases of 15% and 29% respectively. 

Between 2014 and 2018, Computer Occupations, Managers, and Management Analysts saw the largest growth in job postings. Computer Occupations increased 35%, Managers by 34% and Management Analysts by 30%. The remaining top 15 occupations also show increases in job postings.

Number of Job Postings in Georgia (2014-2018)
Source: Burning Glass, Nov. 2019.  Occupations referenced align with the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ 2010 6-digit Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) system. Computer Occupations, All Other represent computer occupations not included in other detailed 6-digit SOC codes. Abbreviations include: Sales Representatives, Wholesale and Mfg. is Sales Representatives, Wholesale and Manufacturing, Except Technical and Scientific Products;1st-Line Supv. of Retail Sales is First-Line Supervisors of Retail Sales Workers; Secretaries and Admin Assistants is Secretaries and Administrative Assistants, Except Legal, Medical and Executive. Managers, All Other represent management occupations not included in other detailed 6-digit SOC codes.

Supply Overview


Georgia Top 15 Most Conferred Programs of Study as of 2017-2018

In the 2017-2018 academic year, 146,021 degrees and certificates were conferred in Georgia. 

  • 36% were bachelor’s degrees

  • 32% were certificates (below a bachelor’s)

  • 13% were associate degrees

The total number of degrees and certificates conferred has increased 19.5% between academic years ending 2013-2014 and 2017-2018, with only a slight decrease from 2016-2017 to 2017-2018. Between 2013-2014 and 2017-2018, master’s degrees had the highest percentage increase of 24%, followed by certificates (below a bachelor’s) which were up 20%. Bachelor’s degrees were up 19%, associate degrees up 15%, and doctoral degrees up 8%. Bachelor’s degrees had the highest increase overall with nearly 8,500 more degrees conferred in 2017-2018 than 2013-2014.

The order of the top three most conferred programs of study - Health Professions and Related Programs; Business, Management, Marketing and Related Support Services; and Education – have remained the same between academic years 2013-2014 and 2017-2018. 

Computer and Information Sciences and Support Services jumped from the sixth most conferred program of study to the fourth between 2016-2017 and 2017-2018, with an 8% increase in one year and a 70% increase over the last five years. This is a significant improvement given the growing demand in this area.

Source: National Center for Education Statistics’ Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) as of 10/2019. [2] The above rankings of programs of study are based on the number of awards conferred annually, which is the total of certificates below bachelor’s, associate, bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees. [3] Homeland Security, Law Enforcement, Firefighting and Related Protective Svcs. is abbreviation for Homeland Security, Law Enforcement, Firefighting and Related Protective Services. Remaining 19% consists of certificates above a bachelor’s degree, master’s degrees and doctoral degrees.

Talent Gaps

While Georgia’s labor market is open to the import of talent from other states, the entry-level talent gaps highlight the overproduction or underproduction of entry-level talent in a closed market, with supply being limited to recent graduates in Georgia and demand being limited to related entry-level job postings available in Georgia.

The talent gap compares the number of awards conferred (by program of study and education level) at colleges and universities in Georgia for academic year 2017-2018 to the number of entry-level job postings (by program of study and education level) in Georgia in 2018. The number of degrees conferred includes those awarded by the University System of Georgia, the Technical College System of Georgia and private colleges and universities across the state.

The following table details the number of recent certificates/degrees conferred by education level compared to the number of related entry-level job postings. 

Source: Burning Glass Nov. 2019

At a very high level, comparing the number of recent certificates/degrees conferred by education level to related entry-level job postings, Georgia is undersupplied at the certificate (below a bachelor’s), associate and bachelor’s degree levels. In other words, the amount of recent in-state graduates with these education levels is significantly lower than the amount of related entry-level job postings available.

Georgia is oversupplied at the master’s degree level, meaning there are more recent in-state graduates with a master’s degree than there are related job postings for a master’s degree. Georgia is appropriately supplied at the doctoral degree level as there are about the same number of recent in-state doctoral graduates as there are entry-level job postings for a doctoral degree. Certificates and associate degrees have the greatest shortage, with supply only covering 48% of demand. Gaps become even more significant when looking at supply and demand by program for each education level.

MAC Policy and Practice Recommendations

Increase access to in-demand postsecondary education with flexible funding options to meet the needs of Georgia’s student population.

  • Appropriate funds for a state-sponsored need-based aid program or implement a statewide postsecondary retention and completion program for low-income students.

  • Increase funding for Child-and-Parent-Services (CAPS) to allow more working parents access to high-quality child care services.

  • Allow enrollement in a high-demand, four-year degree program to fulfill the work requirement for CAPS program eligibility.

  • Offer flexibility via state and private grants that encourage higher education institutions to support students with young children.

Accelerate training and education by reducing the need to duplicate or repeat training that has already been successfully completed.

  • Develop standards for articulation from Georgia Department of Education to the Technical College System
    of Georgia/University System of Georgia and from the Technical College System of Georgia to the University
    System of Georgia.

  • Develop standards for awarding credit for Advanced Placement (AP) and International Baccalaureate (IB) courses across University System of Georgia institutions.

Increase exposure and awareness of in-demand occupations.

  • Develop standards for work-based learning.

  • Incorporate requirement of potential earnings to be a part of financial aid conversations with parents and students both before and during post-secondary enrollment.

  • Reserve 80% of high school counselors’ time for working directly with students and lower the average student-to-counselor ratio to less than 250:1 for secondary education.

  • Improve overall efficiency of and access to Georgia’s work-based learning opportunities for K-12 students, veterans and displaced workers with emphasis on regionally-in-demand occupations.

Incentivize workforce and employability outcomes.

  • Measure secondary and post-secondary institutional success by the financial stability and security of their students after graduation.

  • Incentivize programs that lead to students achieving financial independence.

  • Incentivize incorporating employer input into curriculum and training programs. 

  • Enhance education and workforce datacapabilities to better measure return on education and workforce investments and enable data sharing with community-based organizations to track progress and outcomes for trainees.

Cookie Settings