U.S. Job Vacancies Hit a Record 9.2 Million, Yet Americans Not Filling Them

U.S. Job Vacancies Hit a Record 9.2 Million, Yet Americans Not Filling Them
mohamed_hassan / Pixabay

The Labor Department’s Vacancy and Job Rotation Survey showed that Job offers in the U.S. posted their biggest increase in 10 months to a new record in May. However, job posters are facing persistent hiring difficulties.

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A New Job Dynamic

The number of available positions rose to 9.21 million from the 9.19 million in April. Also, the number of people who voluntarily quit their jobs dropped to 3.6 million in May, a quit rate drop to 2.5%.

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The availability of vaccines and the reopening have caused a setback in economic activity in recent months, but consumer demand has outpaced companies' ability to hire staff. In a race to increase headcount, many companies have started raising salaries and offering incentives such as hiring bonuses to attract applicants.

At the same time, the figures highlight a high number of Americans who quit their jobs to seek new opportunities. Whether they are looking for more flexible hours, a raise, or the ability to work remotely, the number of resignations suggests that workers are confident in their ability to find another job.

As informed by the Wall Street Journal, matching laid-off workers to jobs is becoming a tough, sluggish task, “unlike the swift and decisive layoffs that followed the initial phase of the pandemic in early 2020.”

Fatigue and Burnout

The paradox does well in explaining why companies are finding it hard to land candidates so early in a recovery. But further, it explains why salary offers are rising hastily even with an unemployment rate of 5.9% in June –well above the pre-pandemic rate of 3.5%.

“The relatively high unemployment rate suggests an excess of labor supply which in theory should keep wages low.”

According to a survey by job search site Monster.com, nearly 95% of U.S. employees are considering quitting their jobs due to accumulated exhaustion. Further, over 30% pointed to burnout as the main cause of changing jobs.

“Burnout represents one of the most serious threats for companies that do not recognize the rest needs of their employees.”

Despite the weakening job market outlook amid COVID-19, nearly two-thirds believe that there is a wide variety of job offers in the US. However, only 11% believe that it is not a good time to look for another job.

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