Based on a survey of jobs, Columbus, Ohio represents a bright spot in terms of hiring practices, assuming current trends continue into the coming years. According to a poll by the Manpower Group regarding hiring expectations and jobs, Columbus appears to be one of the bright spots in the nation. Findings showed that more than 90 percent of employers expected to maintain workforce numbers of hire additional employees during 2013, with similar expectations for 2012.The overall employment outlook cheered many business leaders in the community, who recognize that in terms of jobs, Columbus relies on small businesses to drive development. Figures made available by the local Chamber of Commerce noted that such enterprises account for nearly 50 percent of the employment numbers in the region. With regard to raw numbers, small businesses make up the majority of companies in the region.When asked about jobs, Columbus area employers predicted they would add a modest numbers of workers. Approximately three-quarters of respondents expect to add between one and five new employees in the coming year. However, given the number of small businesses in the metropolitan area, the figures are likely to have a positive overall impact. From the viewpoint of overall available jobs, Columbus area companies with fewer than 50 employees make up 80 percent of the businesses. A third have four or fewer employees.Overall, business owners expressed positive feelings about the future of jobs, Columbus, and the economy. Factors contributing to this optimism included the city’s central location, low cost of doing business, and economic stability.The region boasts a number of strong sectors, including higher education. The Ohio State University, for example, maintains a staff of nearly 25,000 people, including some 5,000 faculty members. The main hub of the Ohio State higher education system, the university gained recognition from U.S. News & World Report as among the top 20 public universities in the country. As a source of jobs, OSU hires professors, research assistants, food service workers, office clerks, accountants, and security personnel, among other positions.In addition to higher education, other key sectors include nonprofit and government employers, who continue to employ large numbers of workers in the city.Beyond small-business jobs, Columbus hosts a number of major corporations. These include CompuServe, Nationwide Insurance, J.P. Morgan Chase & Co., and the headquarters of Wendy’s, White Castle, and UPS. Other corporate players include Commerce National Bank, McGraw-Hill, Cardinal Health, and Chemical Abstracts Service.The Information Technology and computer sectors represent another bright spot in the city’s economic mosaic. The Columbus Dispatch noted that computer-industry jobs should post strong growth in the near term. Some predictions put growth in this sector as high as 25 percent through 2014.Finally, regarding manufacturing jobs, Columbus remains in the game. One recent example of this sector holding steady was an announcement by MSC Industrial Direct Co., Inc. of its intention to invest $55 million to build a new 400,000 sq. ft. facility in the region. The company, which is one of the largest direct distributors and direct marketers of metalworking and maintenance, repair, and operations, expects this project to result in the creation of 300 jobs over the next five years.In addition, Niagara Bottling, LLC intends to invest $50 million into the construction of a 300,000 sq. ft. facility in the coming years. The company is the nation’s largest privately-held family-owned manufacturer of bottled water.