Four Out of 10 Workers Seeking New Employment Opportunities

August 6, 2004 ( - For 38% of workers the job market looks enticing, as they plan on trying their luck at finding at new position the next 12 months.

Further boosts of confidence are found in the number of potential job seekers (55%) who are confident in their ability to find a new position. Workers are also not worried about losing their job. Nearly eight out of 10 (78%) workers polled for the Spherion Employment Report said it is unlikely their jobs will be eliminated in the next 12 months, given the current state of the economy and their employer.

The optimism comes despite stagnant job growth reflected in Friday’s Department of Labor Department report (DoL). The DoL reporteda surprisingly weak month in July when employers added a mere 32,000 non-farm jobs to their payrolls in addition to the DoL cutting its tally ofjob growth in May and June by a combined 61,000. By comparison, analysts had predicting a non-farm payroll gain of 228,000 (See Job Market Tanks in July ).

Interestingly, given the number of workers planning on looking for new employment in the coming year, 43%of workers believe that few jobs are available, compared to 26% that believe more are now available and 38% that think the job market has stayed the same. Of those likely to look for a new job, 56% actually believe fewer jobs are currently available. However, only 36% of those unlikely to leave their jobs believe the same.

“The July Employment Situation report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics shows that job creation has slowed, even though 1.3 million jobs have been created in 2004,” said Roy Krause, Spherion president and chief operating officer. “Our survey reveals that there is a paradox in the American workforce. The majority of workers surveyed have expressed strong confidence in their personal prospects, but many still have reservations about the availability of jobs and the current state of our overall economy.”

Results were mixed on the strength of the economy. Thirty-two percent of those polled believe the economy is getting stronger, while 30% think it is getting weaker. The remaining 38% believe the state of the economy has stayed the same. Speaking about their own company, 65% feel confident in the future of their employer, with just 14% expressing a lack of confidence.

“Workers may have expected to see an explosion of job creation as the economy rebounds, much like they experienced in the mid-to-late nineties, but the labor market has changed,” Krause said. “Employers have learned their lessons from the economic downturn and are taking a more strategic approach to the hiring process. They are now looking more closely at how they source their talent and structure their workforce, including their use of contingent labor.”