Americans Worry About Jobs, Look for 2nd Streams of Income

Job Fair

Not surprisingly, most Americans won’t consider changing jobs during the COVID-19 pandemic. One reason: They don’t believe new jobs will be available. At the same time, when considering offers they still give the most weight to career development and compensation, in that order.

Two recent surveys—one from outsourcing firm Yoh and the other from recruiting technology provider Jobvite—paint a sometimes sobering picture of the U.S. workforce, which now includes more than 38 million unemployed people.

Nearly half of U.S. workers seek 2nd income; 19% have hungry families. #HR #HRTech Click To Tweet

Jobvite’s 2020 Job Seeker Nation Report turned up evidence of the financial toll imposed by the pandemic: Nearly half of its surveyed workers, 46%, plan to find a second source of income outside of their regular job. Worse, 19% said they or immediate family members have gone without food for 24 hours because they didn’t have enough money to get by.

With those kinds of dynamics at work, not to mention the high jobless rate, it’s not surprising that 78% of Americans plan to stay in their current positions, according to Yoh. More than 69% don’t believe they’d be able to find a new position if they looked.

However, that doesn’t mean they’re willing to stay in place under any and all circumstances. More than two-thirds of those 44 and younger (69%) and 55% of their older colleagues would consider changing jobs if their employer wasn’t doing enough to protect its workforce.

Not surprisingly, workers are more stressed. Jobvite found that 47% of workers are afraid of losing their job at some point in 2020, up from to 28% in February. Some 73%  believe finding a new job will be harder, up from 48%. The percentage of women who believe finding a new job will be “much harder” more than doubled, from 21% in February to 48% in April.

Top Considerations

If workers are more concerned about the state of the job market and the safety of their workplace, they still have priorities about the terms under which they take a new position. Overall, career growth is still their most important consideration (56%), said Jobvite. That’s followed by compensation (54%), healthcare and retirement benefits (49%) and the ability to work remotely (33%). Broken down by age, employees 40 and older give more weight to compensation, 69% compared to 53% for their younger colleagues.

About 65% of candidates say remote work is very or somewhat important in their decision whether or not to take a job.

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