Before vs. after COVID-19: Map highlights parts of US hit hardest by unemployment


Based on data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Esri’s map displays startling employment trends from month to month.

The novel coronavirus pandemic has completely changed the US workforce. While most employed professionals are adjusting to remote work, millions are facing furloughs and layoffs. Since mid-March, more than 30 million Americans have filed for unemployment.  

SEE: Virtual hiring tips for job seekers and recruiters (free PDF) (TechRepublic)

A new map from Esri displays just how severe unemployment has become. Using data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the map shows how employment has shifted over the past month. Orange areas indicate a decline in employment, and areas in blue signify a rise in employment. The size of the circles display the magnitude of change. 

How to use the map 

By clicking on any county in the US, a pop up window will show the current unemployment figures and how they compare with the previous month, along with the national average. The window also includes a chart of the last 14 months of data so users can see how unemployment has changed over time. 

The following map shows what employment looked like in February.  


Image: Esri

This next map reveals the employment data from March–a startling shift. 


Image: Esri

The maps below are a side-by-side view of the change in unemployment from January to February, as well as the change from February to March.


Image: Esri

The unemployment rate in the US started at 3.6%, falling slightly to 3.5% in February. With the onset of the coronavirus, however, the unemployment rate jumped to 4.4% in March, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. 

How to get hired right now 

Job sites such as Indeed and Glassdoor have added new features to help people get hired during this tough time. 

Indeed users can indicate on their online application that they are in need of work with the hashtag #readytowork

Glassdoor created a COVID-19-specific job search hub, dedicated to those looking for employment due to the coronavirus. Job seekers can search for companies that are actively or aggressively hiring. 

In the meantime, professionals can keep their skills up to date with online education. Many people are turning to eLearning tools to freshen their skills, or gain new knowledge that might make them more competitive during dire hiring conditions. 

For more, check out Top 70 companies hiring remote workers during COVID-19 on TechRepublic. 

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