Report: Decreasing Loyalty to Employers among U.S. Workers Sparks Job Changes

A recent report suggests that many U.S. workers are leaving their current jobs for other opportunities, indicating a decline in loyalty towards employers. According to LendingTree, an online lending marketplace, the median job tenure among U.S. workers dropped from 4.6 years in January 2012 to 4.1 years in January 2022, representing a 10.9% decline, as reported using data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).

Maggie Davis, a staff writer at LendingTree, suggests that the drop in job tenure could be attributed to the “growth recession” following the Great Recession, which reached its peak in January 2012. During periods of economic uncertainty, workers tend to prioritize job security, but as the economy improves, they may feel more confident in exploring new job opportunities.

A previous study conducted by Qualtrics, which surveyed 3,000 employees, revealed indications that employees are willing to exert additional effort to secure their positions at their current jobs. Matt Schulz, Chief Credit Analyst at LendingTree, acknowledges that American workers have experienced two challenging periods, namely the Great Recession and the pandemic, within a relatively short timeframe. He believes that the lessons learned from these periods will continue to be relevant, potentially leading to further drops in job tenure.

Schulz further predicts that employees will increasingly be open to switching jobs, actively seeking new companies or being receptive to new opportunities. Additionally, the trend towards side hustles is expected to grow as people seek multiple revenue streams instead of relying solely on their primary employment.

Notable Findings:

  1. Job Tenure by Gender, Sector, and Occupation: According to LendingTree, between 2012 and 2022, the median job tenure for women decreased by 17.4%, while for men, it declined by 8.5%.

Industries with the largest drops in average job tenure (based on percentage) include:

  • Motion pictures and sound recording (46.2% drop)
  • Furniture and related product manufacturing (44.6% drop)
  • Paper and printing (43.3% drop)
  • Publishing, except internet (42.4% drop)
  • Utilities (36.8% drop)

Occupations with the largest drops in job tenure include:

  • Food preparation and serving-related (30.4% drop)
  • Transportation and material moving (27.9% drop)
  • Architecture and engineering (25.7% drop)
  • Production, transportation, and material moving (25.0% drop)
  • Office and administrative support (22.9% drop)

Some industries, however, experienced an increase in job tenure, including:

  • Petroleum and coal products (53.1% increase)
  • Mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction (48.6% increase)
  • Textiles, apparel, and leather (27.9% increase)
  • Repair and maintenance (16.2% increase)
  • Agriculture and related (14.6% increase)
  1. Strategies to Improve Employee Retention: To retain workers, Workhuman, a provider of cloud-based human capital management software solutions, suggests implementing the following strategies:
  • Recognize employees’ contributions.
  • Invest in employee development.
  • Foster social relationships in the workplace.
  • Optimize compensation plans.
  • Offer hybrid and remote work options.
  • Enhance work-life balance.

Additionally, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were 29.8 million foreign-born workers aged 16 years and above in the civilian labor force, either currently employed or actively seeking jobs, in 2022.

Overall, the report highlights the diminishing loyalty among U.S. workers towards their

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