192: What's REALLY Going On With the Job Market

What’s Really Going On with the Job Market

A reminder that I’ve moved to a once-a-month webinar format, held on the third Thursday of the month at 4:00 p.m. Eastern. The topic is different each month, and I jam-pack them full of content.

To learn about the next webinar: https://mastercoachwebinars.carrd.co

We’re hearing a lot about “The Great Resignation” of 2021 and the volatile job market. I wanted to personally do a deep dive on this topic, and decided to share what I uncovered with you guys.

According to the Labor Department, a record 4 million people quit their jobs in April 2021, starting what is called the “Great Resignation” period. People began to see their lives differently. While some realized how much time they were spending commuting and want to continue working remotely, others felt the exhaustion of digital overload and lack of connections. At the same time, companies like Apple are delaying its return to the office to October as the Delta variant surges.

Employees are claiming more flexibility, defining hybrid work as the best alternative in the post-pandemic workplace to adapt to the VUCA context. A report by TINYpulse shows that 62.8% of HR leaders say that hybrid work optimizes employee performance in their organization

Here are some statistics to set the stage:

-According to Monster, 95% of workers are currently considering changing jobs

-Microsoft Research found 41% of the global workforce is considering changing jobs

-HR executives expect only 8% of employees to quit once COVID restrictions are lifted.

-According to Global Workplace Analytics, the hybrid work model is here to stay; 25%-30% of the U.S. workforce will be working partially from home by the end of 2021.

According to rainmakerthinking’s report, “Winning the Talent Wars,” they found the following:

-Voluntary unplanned turnover – the “quit rate” - is increasing

-Pent-up departure demand – the “want to quit rate” is also increasing

-Early voluntary departure of new hires – employed for less than 18 months – is increasing

What is going on?

-Workforce burnout and depression

-Fear of infection, resulting in fear of returning to the workplace

-Extended unemployment and other benefits – effectively de-incentivizing the workforce

-Increased family care needs

-Location disruption

-Changes in certain industries, such as healthcare, education, and public safety

-Hastened retirements and career-pausing

-Postponed schooling/training/graduation, causing delayed workforce entry

What are the costs?

-Sales are missed, orders can’t be fulfilled, services can’t be delivered

-Current staff members are burnt out from overcommitment

-Overtime costs are increasing

-Perpetual understaffing causes bad habits as employees see cutting corners as the only solution

-New hires are getting the on-boarding and initial training they need to be fully engaged and productive

According to “Winning the Talent Wars,” these are the top four causes of early departures:

-Buyer’s remorse – the employer oversold the job and made promises they can’t keep out of desperation to staff their vacant positions

-Inadequate on-boarding and initial training

-Hand-off to an unsupportive manager

-Limited flexibility

“When employees, whether new hires or longer-term, decide to quit when the time is right, we call this ‘leaving in your head,” or ‘leaving without leaving.” This phenomenon is sometimes the explanation for diminished performance or bad attitude from a previously good employee.”

These are the top five causes of mid-stage departures:

-Overcommitment syndrome for an extended period of time – creating “siege mentality” that feels like an assault.

-Disengaged or unsupportive manager

-Limited flexibility

-Lack of career path

-Relationship conflict

“As hiring soars to record levels in the post-pandemic era, quit rates are also soaring as pent-up departure demand is released.”

Where are the most vacancies?

Construction, manufacturing, warehousing and pharmacy jobs are now in ample supply, the firm's data shows. "The economy is still all about the pandemic," said Jed Kolko, chief economist at the Indeed Hiring Lab. "The biggest increase in job postings are those that either help get us through the pandemic or help us get out of the pandemic."

The hottest jobs sectors are those that "make and move things," Kolko added. E-commerce, warehouse and delivery jobs, all of which surged during the pandemic, are now growing at an even faster clip. The number of warehouse jobs listed on Indeed as of early April was 57% above what they were before the virus struck.

The broader logistics field could add as many as 4.5 million new jobs over the next five years, according to Burning Glass, a labor market analytics firm. Along with frontline jobs, like truck drivers, that includes data analysts, software engineers, project managers and other positions required to maintain supply chains, Burning Glass predicted.

Factories that make goods are going through their own labor pains. Manufacturers laid off fewer workers during the first wave of COVID-19 compared with service industries. Meanwhile, consumer demand for everything from personal protective equipment to vehicles has surged, putting a squeeze on the sector.

The drive to vaccinate people against COVID-19 is also spawning job opportunities in pharmacies and other health care organizations. Across the U.S, more than 1 in 5 job openings at the end of February was in health care and social assistance, according to Labor Department data.

Which industries are still hurting?



-Beauty & Wellness

-Hospitality & Tourism

  1. Flexible work is here to stay. 73 percent of workers surveyed want flexible remote work options to continue, while at the same time, 67 percent are craving more in-person time with their teams. Companies should consider re-designing physical spaces to accommodate hybrid work environments better
  2. Leaders are out of touch with their employees. People expect their employers and leaders to empathize with their unique challenges. More one-on-one meetings and informal conversations are required, especially for remote workers. If working in hybrid work environments, face-to-face meetings can enhance the connection even more.
  3. High productivity is masking an exhausted workforce. 54% feel overworked. Microsoft discovered that apart from an increase in time spent in meetings, the average Teams meeting is 10 minutes longer (up from 35 to 45 minutes). In addition, the average Teams user sends 45% more chats per week and 42% more chats per person after hours, with 62% of meetings not planned.
  4. Gen Z is at risk and will need to be re-energized. Employees ages 18-25 reported that they were more likely to struggle balancing work with life (+8 percentage points) and to feel exhausted after a typical day of work (+8 percentage points) when compared to older generations. For Gen Z’s, feeling a sense of purpose and connection is essential to feel satisfied at work, but remote work makes this more challenging, especially for those new to the workforce.
  5. Shrinking networks are endangering innovation. Respondents who reported weaker workplace relationships were less likely to report thriving at activities that lead to innovation. “When you lose connections, you stop innovating” said Dr. Nancy Baym, Senior Principal Researcher at Microsoft.
  6. Authenticity will spur productivity and well-being. At the same time that networks shrank, a good trend that started last year was increasing authentic relations with those closest to us. The research shows that 39% of people in the study said they are more likely to be their whole selves at work compared to one year ago. These more personal interactions can increase inclusion, productivity, innovation and psychological safety.
  7. Talent is everywhere in a hybrid work world. Together with an increase in resignations, the marketplace is broader as companies are more eager to hire employees living on the other side of the planet. It is also more accessible for minorities, women with children, and talent residing in smaller cities that prefer remote work.

Are you in the wrong job that chips away at you every day? The CareerSpring document and coaching program will help you find a job that uses your zone of genius, recognizes your value, and pays you what you’re worth.

If you’re ready to take your job search to the next level by working with a highly experienced professional with a track record of client success, schedule a complimentary consult to learn more: https://calendly.com/lesaedwards/zoom-meetings2

ECC Services

ECC Podcasts

Don't miss a moment of Lesa Edwards' Exclusive Career Coaching podcasts. This weekly podcast covers all things career management including job search strategies, interviewing tips, networking tools, maximizing LinkedIn, salary negotiations, and managing your mindset around your career.