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Majority of workers are actively hunting for a new job, according to PwC

Posted by Neha De

September 8, 2021

The number of American workers looking for a new job has shot up significantly since spring. An August survey by PricewaterhouseCoopers of 1,007 full-time and part-time U.S.-based employees shows 65% are searching for a different position, up from 35% in May. Some 88% of company executives reported higher-than-normal turnover at their companies. 

The No. 1 reason employees gave for considering quitting was to get paid more — some see job changes as an opportunity to close pay gaps — with 46% of women respondents saying better pay was the biggest driver compared to 34% of men. Survey respondents also cited a desire for better benefits, career advancement and more workplace flexibility.

Meanwhile, more Hispanic and Black employees are searching for new opportunities at 82% and 67%, respectively, compared to non-Hispanic whites at 57%. 

Because of rising inflation, the surge in the delta variant and hesitancy over COVID-19 vaccines, many workers are more interested in remote opportunities. Among those seeking new opportunities, almost 10% say it is because they moved away from the office while working remotely and don’t want to go back on-site. In fact, about 19% of all survey respondents would prefer to be fully remote, even if coronavirus were no longer a threat.

On the other hand, many business leaders are concerned about the erosion of company culture and are weighing vaccine mandates. Some 44% of executives indicated they would “take a leadership role in encouraging employees to get vaccinated over the next 12 months.” And 30% of executives revealed that their organizations are looking to implement vaccine mandates. 

Supporting research

A July 2021 poll by The Washington Post revealed that almost 1 in 3 American workers under age 40 have considered changing careers during the pandemic. This younger cohort said the COVID-19 pandemic forced them to examine their life choices and think about what was truly important, which made them not want to stay in a job they do not like. 

Another survey from remote and flexible jobs site FlexJobs suggested that when looking at their career paths and what they are looking for in a job, 68% would consider changing careers and listed the main incentive as a better work-life balance rather than higher wages. 

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