Description

“The COVID-19 pandemic continues to transform the country’s job market and workforce. In addition to impacting where and how people work, the pandemic has also incited other workforce trends including the Great Resignation, surging labor unrest and the heightened focus on DEI initiatives in the workplace. Brands and companies need to stay attuned to the challenges people in the workforce are currently facing to better support both their consumers and their own employees.”

– Lisa Dubina, Associate Director | Culture and Identity

This Report looks at the following areas:

  • The current state of the American workforce and its demographic makeup
  • The impact of COVID-19 on the workforce and on different populations of workers
  • Workers’ outlook on their current position and their philosophy toward work overall
  • Workers’ perceptions of workplace trends, including remote work, the Great Resignation and the employers’ heightened focus on DEI initiatives

Table of Contents

  1. Overview

    • What you need to know
      • This Report looks at the following areas:
        • Definitions
          • Market context
            • Economic and other assumptions
              • COVID-19: US context
              • Executive Summary

                  • Top takeaways
                    • Market overview
                      • Figure 1: Unemployment rate, by race and Hispanic origin, January 2010-October 2021
                      • Figure 2: Employed Americans, 2021
                    • Opportunities and challenges
                      • Challenge: Job Switchers are resigning and moving to greener pastures elsewhere
                        • Figure 3: Job switchers, 2021
                        • Figure 4: Motivations for job switching, among job switchers, 2021
                      • Opportunity: Provide younger employees with more lifestyle perks and upskilling benefits
                        • Challenge: Workers are divided on the ideal, post-COVID work model
                          • Figure 5: Preferred work situation, 2021
                          • Figure 6: Benefits of remote work, 2021
                          • Figure 7: Benefits of onsite work, 2021
                        • Opportunity: Consider providing more family and childcare support to retain parents
                          • Challenge: People of color are less likely to feel they are respected and welcomed at work
                            • Figure 8: Fitting in and feeing respected, by ethnicity and Hispanic origin, 2021
                            • Figure 9: Fitting in and feeing respected, by generation, 2021
                          • Opportunity: Continue to invest in workplace DEI education and programming
                            • Figure 10: Need for DEI education, by ethnicity and Hispanic origin, 2021
                            • Figure 11: Need for DEI education, by generation, 2021
                        • The Market – Key Takeaways

                          • The COVID-19 pandemic has revolutionized the workforce
                            • The pandemic has also incited the Great Resignation and labor unrest
                              • The future of the workforce is posed to be focused on workers’ Rights, Surroundings and Wellbeing
                              • The American Workforce by the Numbers

                                • The unemployment rate is leveling out after the COVID-19 recession, though the number of open positions remain high
                                  • Figure 12: Unemployment rate, by race and Hispanic origin, January 2010-October 2021
                                  • Figure 13: Labor-force status of people aged 16 or older, 2010-20
                                • Employed Americans skew male, middle-aged and educated
                                  • Figure 14: Employed Americans, 2021
                                • Baby Boomers are leaving the workforce
                                  • Figure 15: Labor-force status of people aged 16 or older, by age, 2020
                                • Women also experienced a COVID-induced mass exodus from the workforce
                                  • Figure 16: Labor force participation rate, by gender, 2015-2021
                              • Market Factors and Current Opportunities

                                • Impact of COVID-19 on work
                                  • Figure 17: Impact of COVID-19 on work, 2021
                                  • Figure 18: Impact of COVID-19 on work, by gender and by household income, 2021
                                • The Great Resignation and job switching
                                  • Figure 19: Job switchers, 2021
                                  • Figure 20: Non-Job switchers, 2021
                                • Workers’ rights and labor unrest
                                  • Vaccine mandates and COVID safety at work
                                    • Figure 21: Outlook on COVID precautions, 2021
                                  • The workforce gender gap
                                    • Increased focus on DEI
                                    • Competitive Strategies – A Look Ahead

                                        • Rights: Workers to demand their right to workplace flexibility
                                          • Global spotlight: Portugal’s remote work laws
                                            • Brand spotlight: Starbucks starts to unionize
                                              • Surroundings: Brands to provide alternative working environments
                                                • Brand spotlight: Q Hair Lounge offers a working spa day
                                                  • Figure 22: Welcome to the Q Hair Lounge, November 2021
                                                • Brand spotlight: Scandic hotels offer workspace and free breakfast to teleworkers
                                                  • Wellbeing
                                                    • Brand spotlight: Canadian florist prioritizes staff’s wellbeing over Valentine’s Day
                                                      • Figure 23: Valentine’s Day boycott, February 2021
                                                    • Brand spotlight: Busch Light hosts TreeWork
                                                      • Figure 24: Busch Lights’ TreeWork, September 2021
                                                  • The Consumer – Key Takeaways

                                                    • Workers are happy with their current jobs, but also dream of more
                                                      • Desired lifestyle and personal passions drive career-focused ambitions
                                                        • Workers are divided on whether they prefer remote or in-person work
                                                          • The appeal of greener pastures has driven the Great Resignation trend
                                                            • The desire and need for DEI initiatives is poised to grow
                                                            • Outlook on Current Job

                                                              • Workers’ current employment is fulfilling and satisfying – but not their dream job
                                                                • Figure 25: Outlook on current job, 2021
                                                                • Figure 26: Outlook on current job, by gender, 2021
                                                              • Black and Hispanic workers are less likely to have a satisfying work/life balance
                                                                • Figure 27: Work experiences, by ethnicity and Hispanic origin, 2021
                                                              • Women and Millennial workers are more likely to have been stressed about work in the past year
                                                                • Figure 28: Work load and stress, by gender, 2021
                                                                • Figure 29: Work load and stress, by generation, 2021
                                                              • Job Switchers are less likely to experience a good work/life balance
                                                                • Figure 30: Work experiences, by job switching status, 2021
                                                              • About two in 10 workers expect to change jobs in the next year
                                                                • Figure 31: Work expectations for 2022, by job switching status, 2021
                                                            • Outlook on Work

                                                              • Job Switchers are more likely to be career-focused
                                                                • Figure 32: Measuring personal success and career ambitions, by job switching status, 2021
                                                              • Compared to others, Job Switchers are more likely to see their work as a means to an end
                                                                • Figure 33: Important factors of work – Personal passions, by job switching status, 2021
                                                              • Gen Z workers are also more likely to see work as a way to facilitate their personal passions
                                                                • Figure 34: Important factors of work – Personal passions, by generation, 2021
                                                              • With the exception of Gen Zs, workers emphasize enjoying their work over enjoying their co-workers
                                                                • Figure 35: Important factors of work – Co-workers, by generation, 2021
                                                            • Ideal Work Model

                                                              • Although polarizing overall, workers are slightly more likely to prefer remote work
                                                                • Figure 36: Preferred work situation, 2021
                                                              • Parents prefer remote work while single consumers are more likely to prefer equal mix of remote and in-person
                                                                • Figure 37: Preferred work situation, by marital status and parent status, 2021
                                                                • Figure 38: Preferred work situation, by generation, 2021
                                                              • Half of Job Switchers prefer remote work
                                                                • Figure 39: Preferred work situation, by job switching status, 2021
                                                              • The top benefits of remote is the flexibility
                                                                • Figure 40: Benefits of remote work, 2021
                                                              • Separating work from personal life and the ease of in-person communicating are top benefits of onsite work
                                                                • Figure 41: Benefits of onsite work, 2021
                                                              • Trend Spotlight: Flexible Spaces
                                                                • Global spotlight: Colombia seeks to offer workers pet owner bereavement leave
                                                                • The Great Resignation – or the Great Reshuffle

                                                                  • Nearly three in 10 workers changed jobs in the past year
                                                                    • Figure 42: Job switchers, 2021
                                                                  • Career advancement was the top driver for changing jobs
                                                                    • Figure 43: Motivations for job switching, among job switchers, 2021
                                                                    • Figure 44: Motivations for job switching, among job switchers, by generation, 2021
                                                                  • Parents sought more flexibility or job replacement
                                                                    • Figure 45: Motivations for job switching, among job switchers, by parental status, 2021
                                                                  • Consider providing more family and childcare support to retain parents
                                                                    • Younger workers were more likely to be job hunting in the past year
                                                                      • Figure 46: Job hunting. among employed workers, by generation, 2021
                                                                    • Consider providing younger employees with more lifestyle perks and upskilling benefits
                                                                    • Workplace Culture and Treatment

                                                                      • The majority of workers feel they are respected and fit in with their colleagues
                                                                        • Figure 47: Fitting in and feeing respected, 2021
                                                                      • Ethnicity and age impact how much workers feel they fit in and are respected by their co-workers
                                                                        • Figure 48: Fitting in and feeing respected, by ethnicity and Hispanic origin, 2021
                                                                        • Figure 49: Fitting in and feeing respected, by generation, 2021
                                                                      • While the majority of workers haven’t experienced microagressions, more than half feel there needs to be more education on microaggressions
                                                                        • Figure 50: Need for DEI education, 2021
                                                                        • Figure 51: Need for DEI education, by ethnicity and Hispanic origin, 2021
                                                                        • Figure 52: Need for DEI education, by generation, 2021
                                                                      • Attract and retain younger employees with thoughtful and transparent DEI initiatives
                                                                      • Appendix – Data Sources and Abbreviations

                                                                        • Data sources
                                                                          • Consumer survey data
                                                                            • Consumer qualitative research
                                                                              • Marketing creative
                                                                                • Abbreviations and terms
                                                                                  • Abbreviations
                                                                                    • Terms

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