September of 2021 in the United States has seen a record-breaking number of workers quitting their jobs. We’re here to take a look at what might have caused this and who is quitting, as well as how this news will affect our economy in the coming years.
According to the Department of Labor, nearly 4.4 million workers quit their jobs in September, a total of 3% of the workforce. The number of employees that have quit is the greatest amount recorded since the government began keeping track of the data.
This year has been no stranger to record breaking numbers – September also saw the second highest amount of job vacancies in our recorded history. At 10.4 million, September tied with August and followed closely behind the recorded vacancies in July.
The correlation between these two statistics is significant when it comes to answering the question, “Why is everyone quitting?”
Given the impact of the pandemic, our economy has been rocked in more ways than one. Most significantly we have seen unemployment rates, supply-chain problems, and an increased closure of small businesses in the past two years.
At this point, the United States is starting to recover from a huge hit on our job market, with lockdowns and rising fears from early last year still setting down. We have almost made it back to our original economy in terms of jobs that are available. However, with the shock and unpredictability of the pandemic, spikes in Coronavirus cases and rapidly changing mandates has made the workforce uneasy and has resulted in an unusual moment in our country’s recent history.
Just as during the start of the pandemic, there are currently industries that are substantially more affected by this nationwide surge of workers leaving compared to others. Jobs in areas of hospitality, education, and health care have seen the most resignations, with the accommodation and food service industry losing an unbelievable 6.6% of their employees in the month of September alone.
The loss that companies across the country are experiencing following the flood of resignations during this past September is unprecedented, and the distinctive cause cannot be completely understood. Many factors most likely played a role in this shift in the labor market, including the recent spike of Coronavirus cases.
Because the service industries, along with health and education, have had the most significant shift of employee retention, it is safe to assume that the threat of Covid has left an impact. There are also reasonable arguments made regarding the stress of the pandemic and its impact on motivation to retire. The aftermath of these past two years could also have inspired a reflection on the everyone’s future, providing those in hourly positions and unfulfilling careers a perspective that encouraged change.
Moreover, the sudden rise in job openings could be causing more job openings. The impact this surge of labor shortage has had on the job market may also be responsible for to this increasing wave of workers quitting.
While workers are leaving their jobs at record numbers and more positions are opening left and right, the staffing crisis has led to somewhat of a bidding war between businesses and employees. While companies are struggling to gain and retain a quality staff, they’re finding themselves offering higher wages and better benefits in order to stand out from the others. The direction our labor market is going in makes it increasingly more difficult for companies to avoid turnover, but it has created a worker-led economy that we have not experienced in recent history.
The benefits for those looking to find a new job have become substantial and will prove to provide new options for new people. While there are less workers and more jobs, the incentive that businesses now have to create a staff-friendly and retentive environment has caused a wave of reform throughout the country. The historical change taking place is restructuring the labor market in the United States in a way that will leave an impac