Press Release Archive
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla., Jan. 4, 2008 -- The confidence level of U.S. workers slightly decreased in December, according to a recent survey of 2,827 working adults. The Spherion® Employee Confidence Index, a monthly gauge of overall worker confidence, decreased by 0.9 point to 52 in December, the lowest level recorded this year. The survey, conducted by Harris Interactive® on behalf of Spherion Corporation (NYSE: SFN), revealed that while slightly fewer workers were optimistic about job availability, more were confident in the future of their current employer.
According to the Index, the percentage of workers who believed the economy was getting stronger was unchanged at 12 percent, while slightly fewer workers believed that are more jobs available. Despite this, the percentage of workers who are confident in the future of their current employer increased three percentage points from November to 64 percent. In addition, the number of workers likely to look for a new job in the next year remains stable at 32 percent and nearly eight-in-ten (78 percent) workers feel that they are unlikely to lose their job in the next 12 months.
"With the continuing turmoil in the housing and credit markets and concerns of an overall slowing in the economy, it's not surprising that the Employee Confidence Index has continued its decline," said Roy Krause, president and chief executive officer of Spherion. "This month's Index reached its lowest level in the past year, but not all of the data is negative. In fact, the majority of workers remain confident about their own job security and the future of their current employer. The data also shows that nearly a third of workers plan on finding a new job in the next year, indicating that this certainly isn't the time for employers to ease up on their retention and recruiting efforts. It's those employers who make the extra effort now to be recognized as an employer of choice who will reap the benefits from having top talent in the years to come."
Results from the December Spherion Employment Report:
Confidence Levels Hit Lowest Level of the Year: The Spherion Employee Confidence Index dropped to its lowest level this year, decreasing 0.9 points to 52 in December. The Index, which measures workers' confidence in their personal employment situation and in the macroeconomic environment, reveals that while more workers were apprehensive about the economy and job market, their confidence in the future of their current employers improved.
Details of the Index:
- 19 percent of U.S. adult workers believe there are more jobs available, compared to 20 percent in the previous month.
- The percentage of U.S. adult workers who believe the economy is getting stronger remains unchanged at 12 percent.
- 64 percent of U.S. adult workers feel confident in the future of their current employer, an increase of three percentage points since November.
- The percentage of U.S. adult workers who are confident in their own ability to find a new job fell one percentage point from last month to 55 percent.
Job Security: Slightly Fewer Workers Believe it is Unlikely they will Lose Their Job
- 78 percent of U.S. workers believe that it is unlikely that they will lose their jobs in the next twelve months, a decrease of one percentage point from November.
Job Transition: Percentage of Workers Likely to Look for a New Job Unchanged
- 32 percent of workers are likely to look for a new job in the next 12 months, unchanged from last month.
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.
This December 2007 Spherion Employment Tracker was conducted online within the United States by Harris Interactive on behalf of Spherion Corporation between December 5-7 and December 10-12, 2007 among a U.S. sample of 2,827 employed adults, aged 18 years and older (November 2007 n=3,014). Results were weighted as needed for age, sex, race/ethnicity, income, education and region. Propensity score weighting was also used to adjust for respondents' propensity to be online.
All sample surveys and polls, whether or not they use probability sampling, are subject to multiple sources of error which are most often not possible to quantify or estimate, including sampling error, coverage error, error associated with nonresponse, error associated with question wording and response options, and post-survey weighting and adjustments. Therefore, Harris Interactive avoids the words "margin of error" as they are misleading. All that can be calculated are different possible sampling errors with different probabilities for pure, unweighted, random samples with 100% response rates. These are only theoretical because no published polls come close to this ideal.
Respondents for this survey were selected from among those who have agreed to participate in Harris Interactive surveys. The data have been weighted to reflect the composition of the U.S. adult population. Because the sample is based on those who agreed to be invited to participate in the Harris Interactive online research panel, no estimates of 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 more than 60 years, Spherion has sourced, 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 approximately 700 locations 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 more than 300,000 people annually through its network, Spherion is one of North America's largest employers. To learn more, visit http://www.spherion.com/. For up- to-date career tips and trends, visit Spherion's career blog, The Big Time(SM), at http://www.spherion.com/careerblog.
About Harris Interactive
Harris Interactive is the 13th largest and one of the fastest-growing market research firms in the world. The company provides innovative research, 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 it believes to be the world's largest panel of survey respondents, the Harris Poll Online. Harris Interactive serves clients worldwide through its North American, European and Asian offices, and through a global network of independent market research firms. More information about Harris Interactive may be obtained at http://www.harrisinteractive.com/.
To become a member of the Harris Poll Online and be invited to participate in online surveys, register at http://www.harrispollonline.com/.
CONTACT: Media, Kip Havel of Spherion Corporation, +1-800-422-3819,