In-Demand Occupations Remain Critical During Pandemic

Workforce Connect Healthcare Sector Partnership and Team NEO collaborate on occupation opportunities

Cuyahoga Community College (Tri-C®), leader of the Workforce Connect Healthcare Sector Partnership (WCHSP), and Team NEO have released Team NEO’s December 2020 Quarterly Economic Review, about the state of job postings during the pandemic, with a focus on health care needs and opportunities in Northeast Ohio.

Team NEO’s data for occupations during the eight-month timeframe of March 1 through October 31, 2020, reveal the following insights:

  • Job postings did not decline significantly compared with the same time period in 2019, but the overall employment landscape shifted. While opportunities in in-demand occupations — health care, information technology and some manufacturing segments — held steady, other sectors declined as a result of new consumer behavior patterns during the pandemic.
  • Nearly 311,000 job openings were posted, with health care and social assistance positions topping the chart (60,500 openings); registered nursing positions accounted for 11,366 of these job opportunities.
  • Shifting consumer behaviors influenced growth in sectors such as trucking and negative impacts to sectors such as leisure and hospitality.
  • There were more than 16,500 postings on the health care front, while online giant Amazon and online auto retailer Carvana added job postings to keep up with at-home purchasing trends. Similarly, as people stepped up their cooking at home, Giant Eagle supermarkets posted more than 3,000 job openings.
  • Communication skills topped the list of the most requested core skills among employer posting job openings.
  • Roughly 80 percent of the open positions did not specify requiring a postsecondary degree, offering opportunity for entry-level candidates.

Team NEO CEO Bill Koehler said, “Northeast Ohio is moving forward despite the challenges of COVID. Businesses and health care systems have taken proactive measures to remain viable — and strengthen their capacity as employers. Manufacturers have grown by transforming their operations to produce personal protective equipment. And the health care industry continues to expand its labor force to meet the demands of the pandemic. Team NEO values the opportunity to collaborate with the Workforce Connect Healthcare Sector Partnership to help link employers in Northeast Ohio’s booming health care industry with the skilled talent they need at this critical time.”  

The WCHSP is working to address the thousands of reported job openings in health care by connecting Cuyahoga County jobseekers to careers in the field that offer family-sustaining wages. Many opportunities for health careers fall outside of traditional doctor and nurse roles, including positions that do not require a college degree.

Tri-C is joined in the partnership by the Cleveland Clinic, University Hospitals, The MetroHealth System, St. Vincent Charity Medical Center, Southwest General Medical Center, and the VA Northeast Ohio Healthcare System, as well as other organizations and institutions.

“The Workforce Connect Healthcare Sector Partnership represents a paradigm shift from competition to collaboration in health care,” said Tri-C’s Sue Krejci, Executive Director of the Workforce Connect Healthcare Sector Partnership. “It serves as a platform for employers to discuss common hiring challenges and address the needs identified so clearly in the Quarterly Economic Review report. By working together, Northeast Ohio hospital systems can create a shared strategy to engage the right job candidates, provide access to the right training and education and, ultimately, help people build careers in health care.” 

Team NEO publishes the Quarterly Economic Review to provide a holistic picture of Northeast Ohio’s economy. The nonprofit organization uses this information to attract new businesses and jobs to Northeast Ohio and help those that are here grow. By sharing this report, Team NEO hopes to help move Northeast Ohio forward into a brighter, more prosperous future – one where the region is more talented, equitable, innovative, resilient, competitive and prosperous.

About Team NEO

Team NEO is a private, nonprofit economic development organization accelerating business growth and job creation throughout the 18 counties of Northeast Ohio. As the designated JobsOhio Network Partner, we align and amplify local economic development efforts in Northeast Ohio’s 18-county region; we conduct research and data analysis to inform local conversations and influence solutions; we market Northeast Ohio as a region; and we work to increase access to jobs, education and training for the region’s 4.3 million people. For more information, visit

About Workforce Connect Healthcare Sector Partnership

The Workforce Connect Healthcare Sector Partnership is an important building block in Cuyahoga County’s overall workforce development ecosystem that will help support health care employers in finding the right skilled talent through business-led collaborations. Cuyahoga Community College (Tri-C®) serves as the sector partnership’s intermediary to bring stakeholders together to identify and develop solutions to industry talent needs and improve economic opportunity for Cuyahoga county jobseekers.