Relatively few Iowa employers are planning to add more workers over the first three months of next year, according to a new report.

The Manpower Employment Outlook Survey for the first quarter of 2013 shows just 15% of Iowa employers surveyed plan to increase staff levels between January and March.

That’s down from 20% in the survey conducted just three months ago. Karen Miller, a spokeswoman for Manpower in Des Moines, is giving the report a positive spin. She notes 74% of employers expect to maintain their current staffing levels.

“So when you take a look at that, almost 90-percent of the employers are going to maintain or add to (their workforce),” Miller said. “This is pretty solid, I would say.” The latest survey also shows 7% of Iowa employers expect layoffs in the coming months. Overall, Miller admits employers appear slightly less optimistic about their staffing plans compared to surveys conducted three months ago and one year ago.

“I think there are a lot of different economic factors going on right now. The Affordable Health Care Act — employers are trying to figure out how that’s going to impact their business and their cost structures,” Miller said. Iowa’s Net Employment Outlook of 8% in the latest Manpower survey is below the national average of 12%.