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Survey: 60 Percent of Workers Laid Off in the Last Year Have Found New Jobs

Workers are finding jobsAccording to a recent CareerBuilder survey, 60 percent of workers who were laid off in the last year have found new jobs. Of that 60 percent, 88 percent found full-time positions, and 54 percent found jobs in entirely different fields than where they previously worked.

Among the workers who are still searching for new opportunities, 56 percent said they are nervous about returning to work after an extended period of unemployment, citing the following reasons:

  • Pressure to prove themselves (50 percent)
  • Fear of the unknown (40 percent)
  • Anxiety around new, unfamiliar technologies (21 percent)

The survey – which was conducted by Harris Interactive© from May 19 to June 8, 2011 and included more than 800 workers who were laid off from full-time jobs in the last year – also revealed the following workforce trends:

  • Relocation: Of workers who were laid off and found new jobs, 36 percent reported they relocated to a new city or state. Of those who haven’t found new jobs yet, 38 percent said they would consider relocating for a position.
  • Pay Increases: The majority of laid off workers who found new jobs reported their pay is similar to or higher than their previous position, with 45 percent taking a pay cut, (down from 47 percent last year), and 27 percent finding jobs with higher pay (up from 22 percent last year).
  • Starting Small Businesses: Some workers may replace their job search efforts with entrepreneurship. More than one-in-four (27 percent) who have not yet found work said they are considering starting their own business.

But while it’s encouraging to see more companies hiring laid off workers (especially in light of recent reports that some employers refuse to consider unemployed job seekers for their open positions), it’s also crucial that they keep this momentum going.

It’s important to recognize that every segment of the workforce brings unique skills and value to the workplace, and that excluding any segment of the population from your applicant pool only cheats you out of talent that could benefit your organization.

In a statement for the survey’s press release, Brent Rasmussen, president of CareerBuilder North America, discussed the significance of these findings and the need to keep hiring in this economy:

“We need to do a better job as a nation to help workers identify jobs that are in-demand today and are projected to grow in the future. We have a growing skills gap and the need to get millions of Americans back to work. As the economy recovers, we need to focus on retraining and ‘re-skilling’ workers to help them move to new fields with a greater number of opportunities.”

Not to mention that companies that invest in hiring and retaining currently unemployed workers not only qualify for certain government tax breaks and benefits as part of the HIRE Act, but they’re also helping the nation overall in contributing to economic recovery.

Have you recently hired a laid off worker? Any advice for your peers?

Mary Lorenz

About Mary Lorenz

Mary is a copywriter for CareerBuilder, specializing in B2B marketing and corporate recruiting best practices and social media. In addition to creating copy for corporate advertising and marketing campaigns, she researches and writes about employee attraction, engagement and retention. Whenever possible, she makes references to pop culture. Sometimes, those references are even relevant. A New Orleans native, Mary now lives in Chicago, right down the street from the best sushi place in the city. It's awesome.

This article is very encouraging given the recent buzz around not hiring the unemployed.

I love the focus on company's "doing a better job to "identify jobs" and "re-training and "re-skilling" workers so that they are ready for the jobs available now. Great article.


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