In This Tight Labor Market, Interest in Funeral Services Work is Growing
As in other sectors of the economy, there is a labor shortage in the funeral industry. However, unlike other fields in which the demand for workers is outpacing supply, the interest in joining the ranks of the funeral services business is booming. The American Board of Funeral Service Education (“ABFSE”), the national academic accreditation agency for college and university programs in Funeral Service and Mortuary Science Education, reported that in 2021 there was a 24% increase in total enrollment as compared to 2020. The majority of new students in mortuary science programs are now women. Today’s graduates are 72% female based on ABFSE’s numbers. This stands in contrast to the nearly 2 million women who left the job market during the COVID-19 pandemic. According to California’s Employment Development Department, the number of Morticians, Undertakers, and Funeral Directors is expected to grow much faster than the average growth rate for all occupations. Perhaps this increased interest in the funeral services profession can help fill the job vacancies for at least one critical (and possibly recession-proof) industry.