SAN ANTONIO — We have all thought about quitting our job at some point. This year, in what's being called the Great Resignation, millions of Americans are suddenly seeing it through.
The pandemic dramatically changed the way we work as employees experienced burnout and a lack of opportunities for growth. It led 4 million people to say "I quit" in April, according to the Federal Bureau of Statistics.
Now may be the right time because of the record number of job openings.
“This is a good time for workers to look to make a change because there is a lot of demand for their skills,” said Mark Hamrick, the senior economic analyst for Bankrate. “Workers are going to have more opportunity, to some degree, to dictate the terms of their employment or at least to find something that is more to their liking.”
A Bankrate survey found 55% of workers plan to look for a new job in the next year. Workers are seeking one major benefit in a new job:
“People want to work in flexible environments where employers allow them to work from home. They want to work from home or even to work from another country or just travel and work at the same time,” said Eugene Levin, a trend expert at SEMrush.
It's a pattern companies also want to take advantage of because they can recruit a new pool of workers.
“Because of remote work, employers and workers are looking to optimize this relationship where someone can work remote work from home, perhaps not require them to move all across the country,” Hamrick said. “That is almost the best of all possible worlds where you can relocate your job, but you don’t have to relocate where you sleep at night.”
Do not just quit. It might be worth waiting for your wallet. Check to see how far you are from being what is called “vested” if you have a retirement account with your employer.
“Vesting schedules are important because this is starting to indicate what percentage of your retirement savings or your accounts typically through an employer that is actually yours right now," said Jay Kirkwood, a financial planer with Secure Financial Management in San Antonio.
It might be worth a small wait until you become fully vested, which means you can leave with the entire amount. Other steps to prepare your finances, especially if you will be looking a gap in employment or a lower salary, include examining your budget.
“That’s a dirty word, right?” Kirkwood said. “Some people don’t like to talk about budgeting, but it is important. The reason that’s important is we have to know what is our aim, what is our goal for our income?”
Also, increase your emergency savings. It can cover expenses if you decide to leave your job and plan to take a few months off.
“We always talk to our clients about having at least three to six months of living expenses for those things that we’re not expecting,” Kirkwood said.
Look for your next position in industries that are most suited for working remotely. Careerbuilder lists the top five best work from home jobs as:
- Web developer
“Web developers can range from designing websites to building code,” said Sara Skirboll, with CareerBuilder.
2. IT support
“What would we be if we didn’t have our IT support?” Skirboll said. “Whether they are looking to keep the business running in the background or just looking for someone to help them recreate a password.”
3. Virtual assistant
“You can work from home in your pajamas wherever you need to do your work and get the job done,” Skirboll said. “Daily tasks might involve accounting, administrative duties, even marketing, all of which can be done from the comfort of your couch.”
4. Customer service representative
“That’s a great job for folks who are looking to use their home office,” said Skirboll. “There are plenty of different industries that you can get involved in.”
“As long as you know how to write and speak in two different languages, this could be the job for you,” Skirboll said. “Courts, hospitals, police officers, schools, all are looking for translators right now. This is a great job to consider if you’re looking to work remote. This is huge growth in these jobs.”
The work from home trend is likely to become the new normal for employment.
“Imagine how many employers would have been willing to have said, oh, sure, work from home five days a week for a year and half straight without really having any other choice,” said Hamrick. “They’ve been forced to negotiate this, so to speak. I think now the secret is out. Workers and managers know that this can be done without any diminution of productivity. At the end of the day, that should work better for just about everybody.”
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