With the advent of the Covid-19 pandemic, the world went into lockdown of various timings, which in turn, negatively affected economies. During the lockdown, many companies resorted to remote work.
However, with the easing of the lockdown, amid the rollout of the vaccines, most companies now require the physical presence of their workers. This has led many workers to seek for alternative remote jobs, thereby resigning from their former jobs. People are leaving their jobs in search of more money, more flexibility and more happiness.
Many are rethinking what work means to them, how they are valued, and how they spend their time. It’s leading to a dramatic increase in resignations. This massive resignation is known as “The Great Resignation”/”The Great Quit”/”Reprioritisation”.
The Great Resignation or Reprioritisation refers to the post-pandemic trend of employees leaving their current companies in search of other jobs.
In short, it’s a massive and unprecedented disruption in the labour market as most employees are leaving their current jobs to search for either remote jobs or a complete career shift.
A recent study from Microsoft found that 41% of employees are considering resigning from their jobs in 2021 compared to 15% voluntary turnover rates before the pandemic.
Similarly, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 4 million Americans quit their jobs in July 2021. Resignations reached their peak in April and have remained abnormally high for the last several months, with a record-breaking 10.9 million open jobs at the end of July.
Companies in the computer and IT industries, as well as financial firms are poised for change as 40%, and 24% of employees from those respective industries have already quit or have plans to quit by 2022, according to a new survey published by ResumeBuilder.com.
That’s followed by 18% of employees in the healthcare industry and 16% of employees in food and hospitality industries saying they plan to leave.
What this means is that there could be more resignations to come.
According to Tsedal Neeley, a Professor at Harvard Business School and author of the book Remote Work Revolution: Succeeding From Anywhere: “We have changed. Work has changed.”
The way we think about time and space has changed. Workers now crave the flexibility given to them in the pandemic, which had previously been unattainable.
While resignations actually decreased slightly in industries such as manufacturing and finance, 3.6% more health care employees quit their jobs than in the preceding year, and in tech, resignations increased by 4.5%.
It was found that resignation rates skyrocketed among mid-career employees.
Also, resignation rates were higher among employees who worked in fields that had experienced extreme increases in demand due to the pandemic, likely leading to increased workloads and burnout.
Some of the notable reasons for employees’ exodus are better pay, exploration of new career opportunities, and some wanting to start their own business.
Employees between the ages of 30 and 45 have had the greatest increase in resignation rates, with an average increase of more than 20% between 2020 and 2021.
While turnover is typically highest among younger employees between the age range of 20-25, the reverse was the case the year before due to a combination of their greater financial uncertainty and reduced demand for entry-level workers.
However, remote work continues to gain attraction as many workers say they’re quitting to find jobs that don’t require being in an office. As more workplaces shift back to in-person, flexible work schedules and the option to stay remote may help businesses retain talent as many view going back to the workplace as unnecessary.
The pandemic has changed minds; people have now seen that it’s possible to work from home effectively, spend more time with loved ones, and build a career that better accommodates your life.
How Employers Can Prevent “The Great Resignation.”
When employees leave an organization, the remaining teams often find themselves without key skill sets or resources, negatively impacting everything from the quality of work and time to completion to bottom-line revenue.
It’s important to track how increased turnover correlates with changes in other relevant metrics in order to get a full picture of the costs of resignations.
Also, exploring metrics such as compensation, time between promotions, size of pay increases, tenure, performance, and training opportunities can help to identify trends and blind spots within organisations.
To conclude, the creation of highly customized programs aimed at correcting the specific issues that workplaces struggle with most can go a long way in helping workplaces mitigate the adverse effect of “The Great Resignation.”