Press Release Archive
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla., February 6, 2009 –The Spherion Employee Confidence Index increased 2.3 points to 42.7 in January from last month’s survey low of 40.4. The Index, which measures workers’ confidence in their personal employment situation and optimism in the economic environment, reveals that more workers are confident in their ability to find a new job. In addition, more workers (34 percent) reported that they are likely to look for a job in the next 12 months, up one percentage point from December.
“The news on the employment front has been grim over the past few months as layoffs and payroll cuts have accelerated. But, as our latest Index and January’s U.S. consumer sentiment index show, workers' optimism has slightly increased, even in the face of these reports,” said Roy Krause, president and CEO of Spherion Corporation. "Although it's difficult to pinpoint the exact cause, overall confidence may have been given a boost due to lower gas prices, a new administration and anticipation of a stimulus plan that promises to create and preserve jobs, as well as a possible extension of emergency unemployment benefits. The one thing that is certain is that the economic recovery won’t happen overnight. Although many employers are riding the current economic situation out, there are pockets of hiring, especially in healthcare, IT, accounting and security, as well as in green energy. As the creation of the TARP initiative and government stimulus programs continue, the need for finance, mortgage and legal professionals will also increase. The reality is, once the economy pulls itself out of this, companies will need additional talent to create and sustain growth. With fewer hires currently taking place and more work to be done, it is crucial for companies to make smart hires. Those workers that can go beyond their job description and add immediate value will remain in high demand.”
A Look Inside the Report:
Confidence in Overall Situation:
The Spherion Employee Confidence Index rose 2.3 points to 42.7 in January from last month’s survey low of 40.4. The Index, which measures workers’ confidence in their personal employment situation and optimism in the economic environment, reveals that more workers are confident in their ability to find a new job. In addition, more workers (34 percent) reported that they are likely to look for a new job in the next 12 months, up one percentage point from December.
Confidence in Macroeconomic Environment:
- Seven percent of workers believe the economy is getting stronger, up two percentage points from December. At the same time, 67 percent believe the economy is getting weaker, compared to 75 percent in December.
- Seventy-six percent of U.S. adult workers believe there are fewer jobs available, a decrease of two percentage points from the previous month.
Confidence in Personal Employment Situation:
- Sixty-seven percent of U.S. adult workers feel confident in the future of their current employer, up one percentage point from December.
- The percentage of U.S. adult workers confident in their ability to find a new job increased three percentage points to 42 percent in January.
- Seventy-two percent of U.S. workers say it is unlikely they will lose their jobs in the next year, unchanged from December.
- Thirty-four percent of workers are likely to look for a new job in the next year, an increase of one percentage point from the previous month.
Confidence by Gender:
- The percentage of female workers reporting that the economy is getting weaker decreased nine percentage points to 68 percent, while the percentage of males believing this decreased by seven percentage points to 66 percent in January.
- Male and female workers’ confidence in their ability to find a new job rose in January to 45 percent and 38 percent, respectively.
- For the first time since November, male and female workers differ on their likelihood to look for a new job in the next 12 months. Thirty-seven percent of male workers report that they are likely to look for a new job in the next year, up from 33 percent last month. Only 31 percent of female workers report the same, down from 33 percent.
Confidence by Age:
- Despite overall increases in confidence reported in January, workers over 45 years old are still the least confident about the strength of the economy, with 70 percent of workers between the ages of 45 and 54 and 75 percent of workers over 55 years old reporting that the economy is getting weaker.
- Workers over 55 years old continue to be the most confident in the future of their current employer, with 71 percent reporting confidence in January. Seventy-five percent of these workers also report that they are unlikely to lose their jobs in the next year— highest across all age groups.
- Unchanged from December, workers age 18-34 are still the most likely to look for a new job in the next year, with 45 percent reporting that they are likely to do so. Only 22 percent of workers age 55 and over are likely to look for a new job, making them the least likely age group to transition jobs in the next year.
Confidence by Income:
- Thirty-seven percent of workers earning less than $35K expressed confidence in their ability to find a new job, compared to 46 percent of workers earning $75K and over.
- Fifty-eight percent of workers earning less than $35K expressed confidence in the future of their current employer, up from 48 percent last month, compared to 72 percent of workers earning $75K and over. The disparity in confidence between workers in these income brackets is also reflected in their views of job security with only 57 percent of workers earning less than $35K reporting that they are unlikely to lose their jobs, and 78 percent of workers earning $75K and over reporting the same.
- Forty-nine percent of those with incomes less than $35K are likely to look for a new job in the next year, compared to 28 percent of those with incomes ranging from $50K-$74.9K.
Spherion Corporation (NYSE:SFN) is a leading recruiting and staffing company that provides integrated solutions and breakout specialties 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.
With approximately 650 locations in the United States and Canada, Spherion delivers innovative workforce solutions that improve business performance. Spherion provides its services to approximately 10,000 customers, from Fortune 500 companies to a wide range of small and mid-size organizations. Employing more than 230,000 people annually through its network, Spherion is one of North America’s largest employers. Spherion operates under the following brands: Spherion Staffing Services Group for administrative, clerical and light industrial workers; Technisource for technology professionals and solutions; The Mergis Group for accounting and finance and other professional positions; Todays Office Professionals for specialty administrative personnel; and Spherion Recruitment Process Outsourcing. To learn more, visit www.spherion.com