RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK – The job market may be changing week-by-week, but in the startup ecosystem, there’s a clear trendline: a decreasing number of job openings.

That comes as startup founders and operators are “working in real-time to understand what’s coming in 2023 for raising capital before expanding headcount any further,” said Michelle Egger, the co-founder and CEO of BIOMILQ.

Citing ongoing macroeconomic uncertainty, Egger noted that no one knows exactly what might be coming in 2023.  “We are all working to protect the team we already have,” added Egger.

That might mean that some startups are pausing, or have already paused hiring, even if it had previously been planned.  And, for the third consecutive week, the total aggregate number of jobs in the startup economy of the Triangle has fallen.

The data show that there are now just 18,813 startup jobs in the Triangle’s entrepreneurial economy, where there may be overlapping postings across the 15 job boards tracked by WRAL TechWire,

That’s dropped 12.1% since a month ago, when there were 21,402 posted jobs across the 15 job boards tracked in the report.

Other factors could be at play

Still, the recent decline may just be a seasonal trend, said Drew Schiller, CEO of Validic.  "Small teams often don't have recruiting functions and can't float hiring processes and complete year-end activities."

Of course, some of the region's startups are hiring.

That includes 410 Medical, said COO Galen Robertson.  The company closed its Series B fundraising round in November and is seeking to add talent to its team.

"Finding engineering candidates to hire these past few weeks has still been difficult for us, although the needle has moved more towards 'normal' versus extremely challenging, as it had been earlier," said Robertson.

"I certainly haven't seen a flood of candidates available," added Robertson.  "It looks like companies are generally seeking to retain the talent they have, but not posting as many new openings."

Triangle firms list fewer jobs but economy – especially tech – is strong, UNCC expert says