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Flexibility: The Magic Word For Employers in Today’s Job Market

May 10, 2022 by Tim Hatton

We’re facing the tightest job market in decades. It’s an ideal situation for many jobseekers, but a frustrating one for many employers.

The latest statistics show that there are more job openings in the US now than there have ever been, with nearly twice as many openings as there are unemployed workers to fill them.

So how can employers stand out as a place candidates want to work? 

Flexibility is going to be key, according to our data. Hear more from Emsi Burning Glass VP of Education Sales Brian Bailey: 




Flexibility.  It’s a term we hear often, but post COVID, that term holds tremendous meaning for the labor market.  

I’m Brian Bailey from Emsi Burning Glass, where we continually track labor market trends. COVID and the resulting lock-downs brought a sea-change to how many employees view work. Even though there are plenty of open jobs, some simply haven’t chosen to return to the labor force.  Many are opting for early retirement, while others are looking for remote locations, less hours, or flexible work schedules that accommodate a less work-centric lifestyle.  

So far, simply offering more money isn’t changing these patterns. In fact, one survey showed only 29% of workers said money was the most important factor in a job.  That means 71% of workers think other factors are more important than the paycheck. It’s as if workers underwent a values shift regarding work. That can be a good thing, but it’s also a wakeup call for employers. If you’re an employer, you’ll want to explore how to remain competitive in offering flexible hours, remote work, and other benefits, such as flexible child care, which remains one of the biggest barriers to women re-entering the workforce.  

For colleges and universities, there’s opportunity in offering flexible schedules to accommodate this change.  And, for local governments, knowing the needs of the emerging workforce preferences can make all-the-difference in the local employment market. 

So, if you’re asking yourself what’s changed these past few years?  It’s the fundamental desire for more flexible work schedules and environments.  To gain more insights about the labor market shifts, visit our website at economicmodeling.com.  I’m Brian Bailey.

Tim Hatton

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