Workers who quit for more money quit again

  • The workers who joined the “Great Resignation” this year are no better off.
  • Data collected by LinkedIn and reported by Bloomberg showed a higher-than-normal job-hopping rate.
  • Millennials and Generation Zers value their time and sense of purpose at work as well as money.

The Great Resignation wasn’t great for everyone.

Although 4.5 million Americans left their jobs in March, few chose to stay in their new positions, according to a LinkedIn study of 500,000 job changes in 2021 first reported by Bloomberg.

LinkedIn found that among workers who started new jobs last year, those who had been in their previous position for less than a year rose 6.5% compared to the previous year. This is the highest rate of job postings the platform has recorded since it began tracking data in 2016.

Jay Berger, chief economist at LinkedIn, said the data does not distinguish between people who quit and those who have been fired. But with companies still looking to fill vacancies at record high rates, there is good reason to believe that people are leaving of their own accord.

“It stands to reason that people are likely to have better opportunities,” Berger said. “There aren’t a lot of layoffs out there. It’s a really hot job market.”

The LinkedIn study is backed by data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics that an increasing number of people who have left their jobs in pursuit of better pay and opportunities are continuing to leave. Even among those who remained in their new role, one in five respondents to USA Today’s March Harris Poll said they regretted quitting in the first place.

Although the US economy has recovered from about 93% of all jobs lost during the coronavirus pandemic, these workers are on the move a lot. March was the 10th consecutive month that more than 4 million Americans quit. The desire for higher salaries, more benefits, and flexibility remotely are among the reasons people are leaving, especially Generation Zers and Millennials. But if the LinkedIn study is any indication, these perks don’t necessarily mean they’ll love their new workplace.

“At the end of the day, you spend most of your life working,” Laurel Camerand, who quit her job for a better job only to leave the new position, told Bloomberg. “It sucks to be miserable.”

All the shifts between jobs make some workers “miserable” and put pressure on companies

As the number of vacancies rise and people move from workplace to workplace, companies continue to raise wages to try to attract new employees. This created a wage disparity between workers who stayed in their jobs and new hires.

But FlexJobs’s Work Insight 2022 survey suggests that wage increases have helped workers overall, with nearly half of the 1,248 employed workers who negotiated a salary last year said they succeeded. These numbers encourage workers to take a leap, especially at a time when inflation has taken Americans’ money out.

In fact, Matthew Misch, head of credit strategy at UBS, told Insider that workers’ ability to bargain amid labor shortages was one reason working and middle-class Americans had a good chance of bearing inflation over the coming months.

“There is continued strength in the core negotiations,” he said, referring to the hospitality and retail industries. “Economists don’t see many signs of weakness there,” he added.

But data from LinkedIn and USA Today suggests that employers may have to do more than just dig into their pockets to please new employees: Workers are looking for more satisfying opportunities and a healthy workplace culture.

Leslie Labarba, a 28-year-old human resources manager who changed her job twice in the past year and saw a 39% increase in pay, told Insider that she believes that young people in the workplace value their time more than past generations.

“As all of these baby boomers come out of the market and fill up with Generation Z people, you start to see time as a commodity,” she said.

If you left your job last year in search of a better deal and are willing to share your story, you can contact this reporter at jlalljee@insider.com.

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