Area’s top job creators can be hard to figure -- Gazette.Net


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Inc. magazine recently released its second annual list of leading privately held job creators, in which six of the top 10 in Maryland reside in Montgomery County and one in Frederick County.

But before anyone starts trumpeting Montgomery as the epicenter of job creation in Maryland, like most surveys, there are a few qualifications. The list is based on the companies that submitted verification and an application to Inc. swearing to how many jobs they have added in the 18-month period from Jan. 1, 2012, to June 30, 2013.

JOBS OUTLOOK

Changes in job industries in Montgomery County between pre-recession 2007 and 2013:

• Management of companies, +25%

• Health care and social assistance, +15%

• Private educational services, +13%

• Government, +12%

• Finance and insurance, +11%

• Hotels and restaurants, +9%

• Professional and technical, +3%

• Total, +3%

• Retail, -8%

• Agriculture, -12%

• Construction, -17%

• Manufacturing, -21%

Sources: EMSI, Montgomery County Department of Economic Development

It’s also limited to privately held companies. So a public company like Wal-Mart or a private company that did not apply to Inc. could have created more jobs in the 18 months.

So is there a way to figure out which companies are definitely creating the most jobs? County and state economic development officials say tracking that would be too wieldy given the fact that researchers would have to know how many jobs every single company or employer created.

“The data we get on job creation are not available by individual establishment,” said Karen Glenn Hood, a spokeswoman with the Maryland Department of Business and Economic Development.

DBED does publish a list of the largest employers researchers know of by the number of jobs they have in Maryland, updating the figures late each year through personal surveys. From late 2011 to late 2012, Fort Meade in central Maryland was the top jobs creator in the state among large employers at about 12,000, while the U.S. Food and Drug Administration added almost 3,000 jobs in that period.

The state agency also compiles a report each month on new and expanding businesses that lists ones that have added jobs recently, as well as looks at federal labor reports.

The Montgomery County Department of Economic Development lists on its website “leading employers” without getting into how many jobs they have in the county, taken from the latest federal labor reports. The Frederick County Business Development and Retention Division lists major employers with job figures in a survey similar to that of the state.

The latest state Labor Department job report that breaks down county employment shows Montgomery growing jobs by 0.5 percent between the first quarter of 2013 and first quarter of 2012. Frederick County has a job growth rate of 3.0 percent in the same period.

The Montgomery DED also uses jobs data from private firm Economic Modeling Specialists International that show job creation to be a little more robust in the county, putting the county growth rate in the past year at 1.6 percent.

“More counties are starting to use the EMSI data to supplement the [Department of Labor] data,” said Steven A. Silverman, director of Montgomery DED.

DMI tops Inc. list in Maryland

Maryland’s top company on the Inc. jobs list was Bethesda-based Digital Management Inc., a provider of mobile enterprise and big data solutions and services that created 1,009 jobs in the 18-month period. About 200 of those jobs were formed in Maryland, with many in Montgomery County, said Jay Fiore, vice president of marketing at DMI.

DMI, which also has made Inc.’s list of the fastest-growing businesses for revenue the past six years, now has more than 1,500 employees companywide, with about 200 at the 44,000-square-foot Bethesda headquarters. The company, founded by CEO Jay Sunny Bajaj in 2002, has offices in Washington, D.C., Reston, Va., Linthicum and other cities.

Fiore attributed the big workforce jump to demand for the use of mobile devices in the workplace. The rise has occurred among both government and private commercial clients such as Ford, Honda and The Gap, he said.

Chevy Chase-based WeddingWire, an online wedding planning resource serving both couples and wedding professionals, was rated second in Maryland on the Inc. list. Of the 143 jobs created in the 18-month period, 141 of those were at the Chevy Chase headquarters, said Kamari Guthrie, a company spokeswoman.



kshay@gazette.net