By Chakeema Cruickshank, Staff Writer
Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, many lives have been uprooted and forever changed. Almost all industries have been impacted by the pandemic, ranging from education, to healthcare, to transportation. With many jobs switching to remote and schools changing to remote and virtual learning, technology became more important than ever. While many businesses and industries were suffering, the tech industry was expanding and growing.
Now, however, in 2022 tech giants such as Apple, Google, Meta, or Microsoft, are also taking a financial hit. In late May, technology stocks took a big plunge. For example, Snap Incorporated, the owners of the social media app, Snapchat, lost $9.68, or 43% of shares. This was its largest percentage decline on record. As a result of stocks crashing, many technology companies are opting to reduce their workforce either by slowing hiring or making staff cuts.
Furthermore, this volatile nature of the job market is likely to continue throughout the year. Therefore, it is important for both employers and employees alike to be aware of the changes and trends happening in the job market. For employers, it is important to be aware of these trends to help recruit and retain workers. On the other hand, for employees it is important to keep on top of job trends to help navigate the job market and successfully land a position.
Job Market Trends in 2022:
As of now, the job market is in the favor of the job seeker. One of the reasons is that across the country, employers are struggling to hire and retain their employees. For instance, the BLS (Bureau of Labor Statistics) now projects that a large number of open positions will remain open through 2030. In addition, fueled by the COVID-19 pandemic, many changes and trends have appeared in the labor market. These trends show some of the changes happening in the job market. Some of these include:
1. Remote work is here to stay.
With the global pandemic and lockdowns, many workers were forced to work from home. Although this switch to remote work may have been an adjustment, some workers that switched to telework began to enjoy the ability to work from home. The job market has seen an increase in remote roles and more flexibility with remote work.
As an alternative, the hybrid model of working has become a trend this year as well. Since this combines both remote work and the office, this gives employees more flexibility. The pandemic has illuminated the fact that some jobs can still be done successfully from home. Moving forward, it will be important for employers to consider flexible policies on remote work especially to remain competitive.
2. Diversity and inclusion.
Many employers are placing an emphasis on their diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives. With rising awareness around different social justice issues, more employers and companies are focusing on diversity and inclusion. With an equitable and inclusive work environment, it can help retain employees and attract new ones.
3. Company values.
With many different social issues occuring, a trend emerging is that job seekers are also looking for companies that align with their values. With the importance of work-life balance, company culture is also significant. This makes it more important for employers and companies to emphasize the mission and culture of the company. For example, along with social justice concerns there is also a focus on environmental issues due to the concerns of climate change. That being said, employers will need to adapt to these changes and show progress on environmental responsibility.
4. Work-life balance and better benefits.
In 2022 and beyond, employees and job seekers are seeking better benefits from their employers. While better pay is one consideration, there also is a focus on better healthcare coverage, mental health support, and parental leave for instance.
5. More diverse ways of work.
The last trend that will be addressed is the growth of diverse positions in the job market. While traditional salaried roles and hourly positions are still common, there has been an increase this year in positions such as contract work and gigs. These gigs and other diverse ways of working show the importance and trend of flexibility this year.
All in all, these trends help provide a greater picture of the current state of the labor market. Although the labor force favors job seekers right now, it is important to note that these trends can change quickly. Moreover, job trends and opportunities can vary depending on the industry and skill set required.
So Make A Deal:
With the increase of diverse kinds of work and these trends in the market, it is important for workers to get a commitment from their employer. While this will include pay, other important aspects to consider are benefits, hours of work, and time off. As seen in the job market trends, flexibility and better benefits is important to many job seekers. In order to remain competitive and retain staff, companies will need to respond to these different trends.
Staff Writer Chakeema Cruickshank is currently a first year at Rutgers Law School Camden. Prior to Rutgers Law, she worked for United States Senator Robert Menendez doing constituent relations and outreach for education, environment, and technology.