Press Release Archive
FT. LAUDERDALE, Fla., July 7, 2006 — Following three months of tepid job creation, U.S. workers were less confident in the economy and their ability to find a job in June. As a result, the Spherion® Employee Confidence Index dropped two points to 56.7, a level that is 1.1 points lower than in June 2005. The recent survey of 2,959 employed adults in the U.S., conducted by Harris Interactive® on behalf of Spherion Corporation (NYSE:SFN), shows that only 19 percent of workers believe the economy is strengthening (a decrease of four percentage points from May) and 24 percent believe more jobs are available, down from 27 percent in May.
Fewer workers were optimistic about their personal employment situation in June as well. Fifty-six percent of workers reported confidence in their ability to find a new job, a drop of four percentage points from May. The percentage of workers confident in their employers’ future was virtually unchanged at 65 percent (a drop of one percentage point from May).
“The latest Employment Report indicates a sizeable decline in worker confidence and it’s not surprising given the effect of high energy prices this summer and the tepid job creation over the past few months,” said Roy Krause, president and chief executive officer of Spherion. “But the economic picture is not as dreary as some may believe. The upward revision to first quarter GDP and increased job creation in June are signs that the economy has been and continues to be in a growth mode. This growth has resulted in greater corporate spending and a steady demand for skilled workers. Given the current situation, we see further job growth and economic expansion ahead.”
The drop in overall confidence did not affect workers’ outlook on their job security and had little impact on their plans to change jobs, however. The survey indicates that 78 percent of workers remain confident in their job security, a number that has shown little change in the past 12 months. In addition, 36 percent of workers said they were likely to change jobs in the next year, down two percentage points from May.
“One of the most telling signs from this report is that workers’ job security remains very high. A high level of job security can be looked at as a sign of stability in corporate America and the economy in general,” he said.
Results from the June Spherion Employment Report:
Employee Confidence Index: Workers’ Confidence Decreases in June
The Employee Confidence Index was 56.7 in June, falling two points from May. The Index, which measures workers’ confidence in their personal employment situation and the macroeconomic environment, may have decreased primarily because more workers reported doubt in the economy and their ability to find a new job. The Index is 1.1 points lower than the level recorded in June 2005.
Macroeconomic Confidence Index Decreases: The Macroeconomic Confidence Index decreased to 40.3 in June, a 1.8-point drop from May, as more workers were pessimistic about the number of jobs available and the strength of the economy. The Index level is 2.3 points lower than a year ago.
Specific findings from the Macroeconomic Confidence Index include:
- 24 percent of U.S. adult workers believe that more jobs are available, down three percentage points from May.
- Only 19 percent of U.S. adult workers believe the economy is getting stronger, compared to 23 percent in May.
Personal Confidence Index Drops: The Personal Confidence Index was 73.2 in June, falling 2.1 points from May. A drop in the number of workers reporting confidence in their ability to find a job fueled this decline. The Index level is 0.1 points higher than in June 2005.
Specific findings from the Personal Confidence Index include:
- 65 percent of U.S. adult workers feel confident in the future of their employer, compared to 66 percent in May.
- 56 percent of U.S. adult workers have confidence in their own ability to find a new job, down four percentage points from May.
Job Security Index: Workers’ Confidence in Job Security Unchanged
For the second consecutive month, 78 percent of the U.S. workforce report that it is unlikely that they will lose their jobs in the next year. The Job Security Index is three percentage points higher than in June 2005.
Job Transition Index: Fewer Workers Planning to Search for New Job
36 percent of U.S. workers said they are likely to look for a new job in the next 12 months, compared to 38 percent last month. The Index is virtually unchanged from the level reported a year ago.
About the Spherion Employment Report
As part of the Spherion® Emerging Workforce® series of employment surveys, the monthly Spherion Employment Report provides a snapshot of the latest workforce trends across the country and is issued in conjunction with state and national labor market releases. Three key indices are measured: the Spherion Job Security Index, which captures how likely respondents think it is that they will lose their job or that their job will be eliminated in the next 12 months; the Spherion Job Transition Index, which captures how likely respondents are to look for a new job in the next 12 months and the Employee Confidence Index that measures employees’ overall confidence in the economy, their employer and their ability to find other employment. The Employee Confidence Index is calculated from the results of four components that reflect these aspects of employee confidence. For each component item a ‘score’ is calculated by taking the difference of the percentage of positive responses and the percentage of negative responses. These four scores are then averaged to indicate an overall level of employee confidence, with each score ranking on a scale from 0 (no confidence) to 100 (complete confidence). A reading above 50 indicates a positive confidence level.
The June 2006 Spherion® Employment Report is based on data from the Harris Interactive QuickQuerySM online omnibus conducted monthly by Harris Interactive® on behalf of Spherion Corporation. A U.S. sample of 2,959 employed adults, aged 18 years and older, was interviewed in a series of two polls conducted between June 6-8 and June 14-16, 2006 (for May 2006 n=2,894). Figures for age, sex, race/ethnicity, income, education and region were weighted where necessary to bring them into line with their actual proportions in the population. Propensity score weighting adjusted for respondents’ propensity to be online.
With pure probability samples, with 100 percent response rates, it is possible to calculate the probability that the sampling error (but not other sources of error) is not greater than some number. With a pure probability sample of 2,959 U.S. employed adults one could say with a 95 percent probability that the overall results have a sampling error of +/- 2 percentage points. However, that does not take other sources of error into account. This online survey is not based on a probability sample and therefore no theoretical sampling error can be calculated.
Spherion Corporation (NYSE:SFN) is a leading recruiting and staffing company that provides integrated solutions to meet the evolving needs of companies and job candidates. As an industry pioneer for 60 years, Spherion has screened and placed millions of individuals in temporary, temp-to-hire and full-time jobs. Positions range from administrative and light industrial to a host of professions that include accounting/finance, information technology, engineering, manufacturing, legal, human resources and sales/marketing.
With more than 650 offices in the United States and Canada, Spherion delivers innovative workforce solutions that improve business performance. Spherion provides its services to more than 8,000 customers, from Fortune 500 companies to a wide range of small and mid-size organizations. Employing 375,000 people annually through its network, Spherion is one of North America’s largest employers. To learn more, visit www.spherion.com.
About Harris Interactive
Harris Interactive is the 13th largest and fastest-growing market research firm in the world. The company provides research-driven insights and strategic advice to help its clients make more confident decisions which lead to measurable and enduring improvements in performance. Harris Interactive is widely known for The Harris Poll, one of the longest running, independent opinion polls and for pioneering online market research methods. The company has built what could conceivably be the world’s largest panel of survey respondents, the Harris Poll Online. Harris Interactive serves clients worldwide through its United States, Europe and Asia offices, its wholly-owned subsidiary Novatris in France and through a global network of independent market research firms. The service bureau, HISB, provides its market research industry clients with mixed-mode data collection, panel development services as well as syndicated and tracking research consultation. More information about Harris Interactive may be obtained at www.harrisinteractive.com.
To become a member of the Harris Poll Online, visit www.harrispollonline.com.