How the Covid-19 recession has affected law, consulting, and accounting jobs

New office jobs are hard to find.
New office jobs are hard to find.
Image: Reuters/Gabrielle Lurie
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If you’re an accountant, lawyer, or consultant, now is a very bad time to look for a new gig. In September, US job postings for the “professional and business services” sector were down by 40% from January, compared to 20% lower for jobs overall, according to data from Glassdoor.

Normally, job openings decline most for industries that are doing poorly. That’s not the case here. Instead, there are two reasons for the sharp dip.

One, you were more likely to keep your job in this industry. While overall employment was down 7% in July from January, professional and business services jobs were down just 4%.

Two, people who did keep their jobs were not quitting.

Professional jobs are typically higher turnover, but from April to June, the share of people quitting each month dropped dramatically, narrowing the gap with the average.

There is some hope for job seekers. July data suggests quitting is slowly getting back to normal.