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Let’s talk about the dynamics of labor – because workers are quitting

Workers are quitting more.     This from some new government data.    In April, the quits level and rate increased to series highs of 4.0 million and 2.7 percent, respectively.   Professional and business services were the second largest industries impacted, behind retail.    There are 9.3 million job openings.    Both… are records.  

Wages in IT are going up too.    Per ComputerWorld: “That wage survey reveals that IT executives in giant enterprises are getting the most important wage boosts, with a median rise of three.2%. IT execs in midsize enterprises are seeing median rises of 1.2%. For lower-level positions, IT execs do higher at midsize enterprises than at giant ones: Center managers at giant enterprises are seeing zero.6% boosts, whereas these at midsize enterprises are seeing 1.three% rises.  IT staffers are seeing the least enhancement — an ongoing phenomenon throughout all firm sizes.”

And, tech unemployment is also low – 2.4 percent, which is about half the national average of 5.5 percent.  

Forrester weighed in on digital transformation in recruitment – it’s accelerated due to the pandemic, and in two ways.  First, those that adapted, shifting their operational model to serve customers in new ways, and second, those in growth mode, who used technology to expand faster.   

weBoost asked about returning to work.   81% of respondents feel safe returning to the office, with 44% saying they feel safe returning whether they’ve been vaccinated or not.   The survey shows about half (47%) of respondents will consider leaving their jobs if they have no choice in home vs. office work and 55% prefer to work remotely at least part of each week.

IBM is expecting those workers back in offices in September, which is when they can return.   They did not, however, announced any specific rules about remote working.     Facebook, too, with a new policy – they’re extending work from home if the job can be done remotely.     This is a change from the previous announcement that only certain employees could request remote work.  

Why do we care?

This data all screams one thing for me.  Workers are in the driver seat.   There are less of them available, particularly in tech, they can call the shots on what rhey want, they’re going to command higher salaries, and they get to pick where they work… not their bosses.    

Sure, you can fight those trends, and on an individual basis you may be successful.  You’ll just be working a lot harder as you swim upstream against the current.  The data is clear here.