Even before the COVID-19 pandemic, I have been covering the worker shortage in the construction industry, sharing some strategies for how to address it. For years, labor shortages have undermined the construction industry’s ability to keep up with demand.
Throughout the pandemic, we have been talking about the uptick in workers changing jobs and moving industries. Some call it the Great Resignation. But I like to call it the Great Job Hop.
New research from WalletHub suggests millions of Americans are quitting their jobs each month, even in the face of high inflation. The incentives available from changing jobs, as well as a desire to get away from careers impacted most by COVID-19, are two big factors driving this shift.
Its research suggests the states with the highest job resignation rates include Georgia, Kentucky, Tennessee, Arizona, and Wyoming. To rank the states and the District of Columbia, WalletHub considered the rate at which people quit their jobs in both the latest month and the last 12 months and then used metrics to rank-order the resignation rates from highest to lowest.
The bottomline is there continues to be a lot of transition in the workforce in recent months, with many resigning or switching industries altogether. Still, there is another trend to consider: workers who remain in their career but are “quiet quitting.”
The phrase is a new one, but the concept of worker disengagement isn’t all that novel. While there are different definitions based on who you ask, quiet quitting is the phrase for when an employee reduces the amount of effort one devotes to a job to the bare minimum. These workers haven’t left—but rather have limited their tasks to those strictly within their job description.
This begets the question. Is quiet quitting only a trend among salaried workers? Or is it also a trend in construction among the trades who must get things done to get paid? I would say it could happen anywhere.
It is important to identify trends and solutions because amid economic uncertainty and businesses struggling to keep up, worker upheaval can have a big impact on projects. The solution is myriad. Management needs to make big changes to attract, select, and retain the best workers possible. This requires policy and corporate changes—but I also believe technology can play a role too.
The Role of Technology
How can technology help? For one, technology can easily step in where workers step out. Automation is becoming more common in many industries including manufacturing, construction, just to name a few. But there is another facet of technology that can help amid this worker revolution. Technology itself can be a tool to attract the right candidates to the job.
New research suggests the need for organizations to modernize business communications to support accelerating hybrid work. Mitel is sharing the findings of a business communications research survey conducted by analyst research firm Techaisle, which unveils crucial insights into the wide-ranging needs of organizations seeking to modernize their business communications to support hybrid work. Here is what it found. There is a need today to bridge the employer-employee divide by prioritizing mental health and wellness.
Let’s take a closer look at the numbers. As “the Great Resignation” continues to play out, 51% of employees expressed worry about work-life conflict compared with just 23% of employers. Further, 34% of employees cited concerns about loneliness while working remotely, while 27% of employers expressed the same concern. And while 50% of organizations reported having a continuous feedback and assessment process to gather employee feedback, 26% still do not have an employee feedback mechanism in place.
While there is still much more to explore in closing this gap between employee and employer perceptions, this research suggests that increased investments in modern UC solutions can be a catalyst for more efficient work and seamless connections between employees, employers, and co-workers and help alleviate stress and fuel engagement.
This is simply one example. Everything from the metaverse to the digital twin can make a worker’s job a little bit easier. It can take the burden off the worker and place it somewhere else. Perhaps in the future we will no longer need to “quiet quit” because the work will be automated for us.
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