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Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Hiring frenzy?

I've heard the reduction in workforce is slowing down, no fear of layoffs, and possibly a hiring frenzy?

Any truth here?

25 comments:

Anonymous said...

Not sure about a hiring frenzy. There have been a lot of job postings lately for career indefinite positions thru out the lab and almost no postings thru Akima. Maybe we are catching up from the years when we had the hiring freeze.

I think there should always be a fear or layoffs given our current situation in the house and senate in regards to the budget gridlock. Any down turn in the economy will almost certainly involve a reduction in the career indefinite work force. I personally think a lot a people are going to retire in the next 3 to 5 years saving the younger generation of workers who have no other place to go!

Anonymous said...

the younger generation of workers who have no other place to go!

March 4, 2015 at 6:02 PM

Why has LANS/LLNS been hiring people who will have "no other place to go"?? This is seriously bad for our longer term national security. A work-fare for young, uneducated, incompetent scientists? Yikes!

Anonymous said...

The young people have no other place to go? Funny. Delusion. Everyone at the lab knows several young people who have left. I've never heard of a mid to late career person voluntarily leaving, despite the relative proportions in the workforce. Everyone who's honest knows there are a lot of people fumbling along, with nowhere else they could go, and of which generation these people actually tend to be members.
I am a later career, and have only been impressed by recent hires.

Anonymous said...

Hoardes of mid-career people have left, and they are the ones we can't afford to lose. Old enough to know how to do good work within the system, but young enough to still be motivated to do more.

Anonymous said...

"...Hoardes of mid-career people have left..."

Where are the workforce retention numbers you are referring to?

Anonymous said...

I'm not referring to any, I can count them on my fingers just among the people I personally know.

Anonymous said...

Hoardes of mid-career people have left, and they are the ones we can't afford to lose. Old enough to know how to do good work within the system, but young enough to still be motivated to do more.

March 4, 2015 at 9:46 PM

Hiring young and attrition of the motivated mid-career. We'll be well positioned when countries decide to settle things with WarCraft instead of weapons.

Anonymous said...

No, it will be statecraft, at which we have failed completely recently. The world will say: "United States? Nah. Nothing there except talk. And abandoning long-time allies."

Anonymous said...

If you live in Los Alamos, you're still within reasonable (by CA standards) commute distance from Albuquerque, which has many more high tech opportunities. Or you can move. No one is trapped at a national lab.

Anonymous said...

The only thing worse than living in Los Alamos with a job you don't like is living in Los Alamos without a job.

Anonymous said...

Living and working in a "one factory town" is always a dangerous career path.

It's even more dangerous when future funding will likely cause the town's "one factory" to shrink.

Anonymous said...

People have been saying that since the big layoffs of the late 1980s. So far, no perceptible problem.

Anonymous said...

So what's the point 10:09 PM? That there have been no obvious changes either to the Lab or to LA county in the last 25 years? If things today were only as good as they were back then, it would be paradise in comparison.

Anonymous said...

The fact is that more than 50% of the workforce doesn't even live in Los Alamos, and a significant fraction is as close to Albuquerque as to LANL.

Anonymous said...

Apparently 10:09 hasn't lost half the value of his home along with what was once an attractive benefits package. Now Los Alamos is Flint Michigan with a bunch of PhDs. It won't recover.

Anonymous said...

Apparently 10:09 hasn't lost half the value of his home...

March 7, 2015 at 2:32 PM

Apparently you missed the fact that the burst housing bubble affected many millions all over the country. Ascribing that to LANS is quite a stretch. Judging by the current home prices, Los Alamos has already recovered.

Anonymous said...

2:42 stay off the drugs.

Anonymous said...

According to Los Alamos real estate statistics, median housing prices dropped about 15% from 2006 - 2012, compared to about 27% nationwide, and have been recovering since 2012, as they are elsewhere in the country. Google, no drugs.

Anonymous said...

Start around 2000 and the story is much different.

Anonymous said...

March 8, 2015 at 6:08 PM

Provide verifiable statistics. In most of the US, housing prices exploded between 2000 and 2006. Los Alamos was no different.

Anonymous said...

Some background on Los Alamos housing:

Prices of homes in Los Alamos started to rapidly rise soon after the huge Cerro Grande fire in 2000 because the hundreds of homes lost to the fire greatly reduce the available housing stock. Large swaths of residential communities near the town's perimeter were turned into ash heaps.

When the nationwide boom began to get totally out of hand back in 2005-2007, Los Alamos never really participated. This was due to the scare caused by the loss of the UC contract and the change over to LANS LLC. Soon after LANS LLC took over, the voluntary separation plan (VSP) and fear of a possible RIF cause further pricing declines during the 2007-2009 period. The economic Great Recession of 2008-2010 also hurt housing prices on the Hill.

At this time, housing prices are fairly stable but not showing the increases being seen in nearby places like Santa Fe. The housing market on the Hill moves at its own pace. With LANL shrinking since peak employment years of the mid-2000s, it is unlikely that housing prices in Los Alamos will ever again undergo large, rapid gains like they did soon after the Cerro Grande fire.

Demographics is another force that greatly affects the Los Alamos area. Many people have or soon will retire from the lab. Some people who retire from the lab stay in town but many do not, thereby increasing the available housing stock as they leave for warmer climates. This means that there is very little need to construct new housing in Los Alamos either now or in the future. The lack of a housing shortage further dampens the rise in Los Alamos housing prices.

Of course, if LANL follows the dismal path of Rocky Flats then the Los Alamos housing market would collapse. That's an outlier event. The most likely scenario is small gains in housing prices, probably much smaller than the gains seen in most other regions of the nation. No one should buy a house in Los Alamos thinking they'll get rich by selling it at some future time. It should be seen as a shelter, not an investment. Given the way things have started to badly fray and deteriorate across America, Los Alamos as a whole can be viewed as a very good, safe shelter from America's storms.





Anonymous said...

No one should buy a house in Los Alamos thinking they'll get rich by selling it at some future time. It should be seen as a shelter, not an investment.

March 8, 2015 at 10:32 PM

The lesson of the housing collapse of 2007-2008 is that this should be the rule everywhere. Sadly, some will not learn that lesson and history will repeat itself. Some lenders are already restarting sub-par loan programs, and some holding companies and investment houses are already bundling them as investments. Take a deep breath, because your mortgage is about to go underwater again.

Anonymous said...

"It should be seen as a shelter, not an investment."

10:32 PM has it correct. In all the rest of America, the dream is to own your own home as an investment. This dream has served hard-working honest people for generations. However, in Los Alamos, it is just a shelter and nothing more.

The previous poster is right and there are no drivers for housing demand outside the lab. While there are a few outliers on each end of the market, most of the options fall in a narrow range that has not changed much over the years. Other than the fire, and subsequent reconstruction, there have been only minor major advances in the county's housing since 1960.

As far as the outliers go, there will always be some supply and demand for low end mobile homes, as well as the half-million plus high end. Where Los Alamos differs significantly from any other established housing market is the relative lack of many very high end properties. Other than the lab director's house, nothing else in the county has sold in that market. Compare this to Santa Fe, where numerous multi-million dollar sales take place. The fact is that what creates and sustains a diverse real estate market is a diverse buyer base. While Santa Fe offers many reasons to live there, Los Alamos is, always has been, and always will be, a one-trick pony.

Anonymous said...

Given the way things have started to badly fray and deteriorate across America, Los Alamos as a whole can be viewed as a very good, safe shelter from America's storms.

March 8, 2015 at 10:32 PM

If you actually live in Los Alamos, take a look at the older downtown apartments, and the un-rebuilt areas of the Western Area and the North Community. "Fray and deteriorate" is a pretty good description. "Slums" is a better one.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...
Apparently 10:09 hasn't lost half the value of his home along with what was once an attractive benefits package. Now Los Alamos is Flint Michigan with a bunch of PhDs. It won't recover.

March 7, 2015 at 2:32 PM


If this is the case, then all they need is the Los Alamos Michael Moore!
Anybody now any fat, PhD, who got his ass kicked a lot throughout school and likes to make movies based on 1/2 truths?

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