Nearly 15 million Americans are unemployed and experts say it's going to be several years before the nation regains all or nearly all of the 8.4 million jobs lost to the recession.
Some say lost jobs in areas like real estate, manufacturing and financial services may not be restored at all.
When employers do start hiring freely again, economists predict that there will be a huge division in the work force.
Job openings will likely fall into the two categories of higher skilled and lower skilled.
The higher skilled category includes higher paid professionals like doctors and lawyers, and the lower skilled category includes lower paying jobs like health care aides and store clerks.
Even when the job market does pick up, some experts say many people will be left behind because the economy is shifting from one driven by manufacturing to one fueled by service.
Monday, on "Good Morning America," U.S. Labor Secretary Hilda Solis talks about the latest unemployment numbers and why not enough jobs were created to counter balance the number of people looking for work.
"The changes that have been made even through my own department making investments with businesses and community colleges to help provide assistance to people who have completely lost their jobs because those jobs have been outsourced and gone to other countries," said Solis. "Now we're looking at investing here in the American worker."
Job sectors likely to grow
- Health care is expected to add four million jobs by 2018, according to Labor Department data. Many of these jobs will pay well. Physical therapists averaged about $76,000 last year, according to the department's data. Others pay far less. Home health care aides earned an average of just $21,600.
- Information technology is expected to see a 45-percent increase in positions by 2018. Technology pay averaged $84,400 in 2008 - nearly double the average private-sector pay of $45,400, according to an analysis of the most recent full-year data by the TechAmerica Foundation, a research group.
- New industries like alternative energy and predictive analytics are also expected to add jobs with a predicted 20 percent growth in positions by 2018.
For those who are still looking for jobs now, the U.S. Department of Labor launched a new website Monday to help out-of-work Americans find new opportunities.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.