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The HR Manager: Should I Stay or Should I Go?

Current market offers historic levels of open positions across many sectors

By Karen Hawkins, Hawkins HR Consulting

Help wanted signs and ads are aplenty. If you hear someone say, “I just can’t find a job,” you may be thinking, “You must not be looking hard enough.” These days, it feels like there are more jobs than employees. That’s because there are currently more vacant positions than unemployed people—by nearly double!

Quitting in record numbers
Over 4 million Americans have quit their jobs every month for over 12 months straight. Layoffs and discharges reached a new record low. Job hopping is the trend to get better pay, better benefits, remote work, career advancement, etc.

Location, location, location
For many Americans, location is NOT as important as it used to be. We can live in Kentucky and work for an employer who is hundreds or thousands of miles away. The amount of remote work available has increased significantly.

Roughly 60% of U.S. workers who say their jobs can mainly be done from home are actually working from home all or most of the time.
According to the Pew Research Center, college graduates with jobs that can be done from home (65%) are more likely than those without a four-year college degree (53%) to say they are working from home all or most of the time. And higher shares of upper-income workers (67%) are working from home compared with middle- (56%) and lower-income (53%) workers.

Pay is increasing
This year, the average annual salary increase has been in the range of 4.5% to 5%—the largest annual increase in decades. Many employers are even considering giving mid-year increases to keep up with the market. I have one client who is bumping all pay across the board 10% in order to retain great talent.

According to CNBC, these occupations are most in demand and therefore, pay is following:
1. Registered nurses
2. Heavy and tractor-trailer truck drivers (shortage of approximately 80,000 truck drivers)
3. Sales representatives, wholesale and manufacturing (except technical and scientific products)
4. Customer service representatives
5. Software developers, applications