Tag: HR

  • The Root Cause of the Great Resignation Is Not What You Think

    November 17, 2021

    Tags: ,

    The­o­ries abound about why work­ers are leav­ing their jobs in record num­bers in 2021 and thus cre­at­ing what pun­dits are call­ing the Great Res­ig­na­tion. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Sta­tis­tics report­ed that 4.3 mil­lion Amer­i­cans quit their jobs in August. These res­ig­na­tions con­tin­ue to be high­er in food ser­vice, retail, and education.

    One pop­u­lar opin­ion was that peo­ple quit unex­pect­ed­ly and did not look for a new job because of the gen­er­ous unem­ploy­ment ben­e­fits insti­tut­ed dur­ing the pan­dem­ic. The claim was that the job mar­ket would return back to nor­mal once those ben­e­fits were phased out.

    Even though the ben­e­fits end­ed over Labor Day week­end, there has been no sig­nif­i­cant recov­ery in employ­ment. Twen­ty states actu­al­ly stopped the ben­e­fits over the sum­mer and have seen no improve­ment since then either.

    So what’s real­ly behind this trend? Accord­ing to econ­o­mists and labor mar­ket experts, Amer­i­can work­ers are soul-searching.The Great Res­ig­na­tion is a philo­soph­i­cal reset of work expectations.

    What Workers Really Want

    Heather Long, an eco­nom­ics cor­re­spon­dent from the Wash­ing­ton Post, spoke with CBS News recent­ly to dis­cuss her report­ing on the Great Resignation.

    She said some work­ers are still con­cerned about COVID-19, yet that fear may be wan­ing with the increase of vac­ci­na­tions cou­pled with decreased infec­tions. Many oth­ers sim­ply want to change what they’re doing with their lives.

    Low­er wage work­ers are protest­ing over sub­stan­dard pay and harsh work con­di­tions, but even mid-lev­el work­ers who earned high­er salaries and bet­ter ben­e­fits are leav­ing to open their own busi­ness­es or pur­sue their passions.

    Long said that the two biggest pri­or­i­ties for Amer­i­cans are find­ing some­thing dif­fer­ent or more ful­fill­ing, and work­ing for an employ­er that val­ues both men­tal health and work-life balance.

    What does this mean for companies?

    Offer­ing high­er salaries to job can­di­dates may seem like an obvi­ous fix to the prob­lem, but be pre­pared for the nee­dle to bare­ly move as a result. And it’s clear from the last few months that unem­ploy­ment ben­e­fits weren’t hold­ing work­ers back either.

    “The ear­ly evi­dence cer­tain­ly sug­gests that the unem­ploy­ment ben­e­fits were not the main rea­son hold­ing peo­ple back from going and seek­ing work again,” said Long.

    Instead, the Great Res­ig­na­tion has proven to be more about per­son­al val­ues and less about economics.

    The Great Reassessment of Work in America

    In her inter­view, Long described what’s hap­pen­ing as a” great reassess­ment of work in Amer­i­ca,” and one of the “biggest shake­ups of the labor mar­ket since World War II.”

    It takes a sig­nif­i­cant or trau­mat­ic event like a pan­dem­ic or world war to get peo­ple ques­tion­ing their lives and how work fits into it. So much about the work­force changed in the mid-1900s. Amer­i­cans were still reel­ing from The Great Depres­sion only a few years before the war that caused unem­ploy­ment rates to sky­rock­et to 25%.

    The start of the war actu­al­ly got things mov­ing again. Fac­to­ries were estab­lished to pro­duce weapons and sup­plies. More Amer­i­cans, includ­ing women who were pre­vi­ous­ly expect­ed to be stay-at-home wives and moth­ers, went to work to sup­port the effort. A major­i­ty of the work­force became per­ma­nent­ly indus­tri­al­ized in that decade.

    The Amer­i­can work­force was nev­er the same after World War II, and many experts are point­ing to a sim­i­lar shift today in 2021.

    Advice for HR Professionals and Companies

    Know­ing the root caus­es of “The Great Res­ig­na­tion” will help HR depart­ments and com­pa­nies tru­ly solve this labor cri­sis. Mon­ey is impor­tant. Every­one needs to pay their bills, and it would be nice to have a few extra dol­lars to take an extra vaca­tion or buy a more expen­sive car. But don’t make the mis­take of think­ing it’s all salary that will bring back workers.

    Even if some employ­ees return for a high­er salary, it will only keep them engaged in the short-term. When they even­tu­al­ly quit again because of burnout, com­pa­nies will be back to square one.

    Younger work­ers from the Mil­len­ni­al and Gen‑Z gen­er­a­tions are lead­ing this trend. Besides the mon­ey, they want to feel safe and well-com­pen­sat­ed. They want to be treat­ed with decen­cy by employ­ers, who care about their men­tal health and per­son­al downtime.

    by Mcken­zie Cassidy

    Orig­i­nal­ly post­ed on HR Exchange Network

  • Exploring Year-Round Benefits Engagement

    March 22, 2021

    Tags: ,

    Just as with any good, healthy rela­tion­ship, com­mu­ni­ca­tion with employ­ees is key. Only com­mu­ni­cat­ing with employ­ees regard­ing their ben­e­fits pack­age dur­ing open enroll­ment will most def­i­nite­ly result in them not tak­ing full advan­tage of all it has to offer. In an effort to assist employ­ees in under­stand­ing and max­i­miz­ing their ben­e­fits, com­pa­nies should use a year-round ben­e­fits engage­ment strat­e­gy.  Let’s explore some sim­ple ways to set up your annu­al com­mu­ni­ca­tion plan.


    As you begin craft­ing your engage­ment plan, think of the over­all goal you want to accom­plish. Per­haps you sim­ply want your employ­ees to be bet­ter edu­cat­ed on their plan offer­ings. Maybe you’d like to reduce the num­ber of ques­tions that employ­ees ask dur­ing open enroll­ment meet­ings. Or, maybe you want your employ­ees to uti­lize a cer­tain plan ben­e­fit that has been his­tor­i­cal­ly under­used result­ing in high­er costs to the employ­ee or the com­pa­ny. What­ev­er the case, first set your goal for the com­mu­ni­ca­tion plan.


    Now that you have an end-goal in mind, start think­ing of how fre­quent­ly you want to com­mu­ni­cate.  Sched­ule your com­mu­ni­ca­tion moments to post con­sis­tent­ly. Maybe you start a “Ben­e­fits Minute” that hits the first Mon­day of the month. Or, start a “Ben­e­fits Blog” that posts every oth­er Fri­day. What­ev­er the case, make the com­mu­ni­ca­tion hap­pen on a sched­ule so that employ­ees know when to expect it and know what it’s called.


    Wordy emails, drawn-out meet­ings, and for­ev­er long phone mes­sages will quick­ly get ignored and delet­ed. Instead, fol­low this sim­ple for­mu­la when craft­ing your communication:

    1. Here’s what you need to know about your benefits.

    Give a quick overview of the ben­e­fit you are focus­ing on for this par­tic­u­lar communication.

    1. Here’s why it’s impor­tant that you know this.

    In a few short sen­tences, explain how this ben­e­fit ben­e­fits the employ­ee whether it be a cost sav­ings, time sav­ings, or sim­ply a great help to them.

          3.  Here’s what you need to do to find out more.

    Pro­vide a way to find out more infor­ma­tion on this ben­e­fit by giv­ing a link, an email address, or a phone number.


    Com­mu­ni­ca­tion isn’t one-size-fits-all. Peo­ple learn in dif­fer­ent ways—some may be visu­al learn­ers while oth­ers may be oral learn­ers. Make sure you mix up the way you com­mu­ni­cate to cov­er both types. Also, change up the method of com­mu­ni­ca­tion. Try emails, explain­er videos, print­ed fly­ers, and quick, stand-up meet­ings. By using a vari­ety of meth­ods, you are able to engage a broad­er audi­ence since your com­pa­ny is com­prised of a range of ages, gen­ders, learn­ers, and tech users.

    Engag­ing in a reg­u­lar, year-round com­mu­ni­ca­tion strat­e­gy for explain­ing employ­ee ben­e­fits will sup­port both the com­pa­ny as well as the employ­ee. Set your strat­e­gy in motion by fol­low­ing the sim­ple tips shared here. And, when you do this, you will see that your employ­ees will reap the ben­e­fits of a healthy under­stand­ing of their ben­e­fit plan.

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