ST. CLOUD, Minn. (WCCO) — On the outskirts of Sartell, Minn., sits a Minnesota success story.

W3i develops mobile and web apps for companies around the world — and businesses is booming.

“We just came through our financial plan process for 2013, and our plans are to increase staffing this year,” CEO Andy Johnson said.

Johnson says the company is on track to boost staff by more than 25 percent in 2013. That is, if enough skilled computer engineers can be found.

“There’s so much demand in the engineering area that we find ourselves competing for talented resources there,” Johnson said.

The company’s hiring plans are borne out by St. Cloud State University’s ninth-annual College Job Outlook survey.

“They should be very optimistic,” said survey author Andrew Ditlevson.

Ditlevson is the associate director of SCSU’s Career Service Center, which conducts the annual survey of Minnesota businesses.

Of the more than 100 which responded to the annual questionnaire, more than half (50.5 percent) say they plan on increasing hiring in 2013.

The top three hottest fields will be financial services, where 76.9 percent say they will increase hiring, to retail’s 71.5 percent and manufacturing’s 66.7 percent.

Just as encouraging is what the survey found regarding job cuts — less than three percent of businesses quizzed said they will be shedding jobs.

“This is the best result we’ve seen since 2007,” he said. “The highest percentage of employers that say they plan to increase, and the lowest percent say they plan on decreasing hiring.”


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