Surveys Show Workers Are Ready To Make Changes

A raft of recent surveys shows that the recession is having a profound impact on workers and employment trends worldwide. Even though they measure different things — global hiring, immigration repatriation, and career trends — there’s a theme here, which is that the economy is global and when it recovers, things will not go back to the way they were.

There’s the report from Monster this week that says vast numbers of workers are ready to switGlobal Snapshotch careers for a new job. Another survey, this one from SearchPath International and Antal International, give us a global view of hiring — and firing — trends.

The Global Snapshot offers clues to where the hottest markets in the world are for managers and professionals. (Hint: Think Russia, China, India, Egypt, and Eastern Europe.)

That report dovetails with last week’s USA Today report about an emerging brain drain of managers and professionals from the U.S. to China and India.

Vivek Wadhwa
Vivek Wadhwa

Vivek Wadhwa, executive in residence at Duke University and a senior research associate at Harvard University, surveyed some 1,200 immigrants who returned to their native country. He reports that improved opportunities at home, coupled with U.S. visa policies, makes it likely that up to 200,000 white collar migrants will return to China and India in the next five years.

A UPI version of the story includes this comment from Wang Baodong, a spokesman for the Chinese Embassy in Washington: “China needs a lot of well-trained personnel.”

No surprise there, especially no surprise after you peek at The Global Snapshot report that says 74 percent of the surveyed companies in China report they are hiring skilled managers and other white collar professionals now. Also not surprisingly, the report commentary notes that there has been a better than 10 percent rise in the companies shedding workers, which the report notes, suggests “that employers are taking advantage of current conditions to ‘weed out’ less productive members of staff.”

Other hot Asian markets for these same workers: Singapore, Pakistan and Hong Kong. India is bit less robust with 51 percent of the surveyed companies hiring now. But give it a quarter and 66 percent say they’ll be looking for managers and professionals.

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In the U.S., 55 percent of respondents report hiring, with the same percentage planning to hire next quarter.

The recession has also got workers thinking that it may be wise to find a new career.

Monster LogoMonster released a poll of workers in North America and Europe showing 89 percent of them would consider or would make a career change if it meant finding a new job. While only 11 percent of the 22,444 visitors to Monster’s sites in Europe, Canada, or the U.S. said they wouldn’t change careers — at least not now — 49 percent said they’ve been wanting to change careers and are ready now.

In Spain, 92 percent of the visitors to the Monster site who took the poll said they were ready to make a career change. They’re feeling the pressure; 44 percent said they feel they must take the first job that comes along. That percentage contrasts sharply with respondents elsewhere, only 23 percent of whom felt they needed to pretty much take anything.

No doubt those who visit Monster sites are motivated job seekers, and probably more willing to switch industries than those who aren’t looking. But when half of those taking the poll answer the question, “Would you consider a job in another industry?” with a “Yes, I’ve been wanting to make a career change,” you can figure that change is underway.

John Zappe is the editor of and a contributing editor of John was a newspaper reporter and editor until his geek gene lead him to launch his first website in 1994. He developed and managed online newspaper employment sites and sold advertising services to recruiters and employers. Before joining ERE Media in 2006, John was a senior consultant and analyst with Advanced Interactive Media and previously was Vice President of Digital Media for the Los Angeles Newspaper Group.

Besides writing for ERE, John consults with staffing firms and employment agencies, providing content and managing their social media programs. He also works with organizations and businesses to assist with audience development and marketing. In his spare time  he can be found hiking in the California mountains or competing in canine agility and obedience competitions.

You can contact him here.


8 Comments on “Surveys Show Workers Are Ready To Make Changes

  1. How is it that a “raft” of surveys supporting that “workers are ready to make changes”, conducted by organizations earning their living from people making those changes, are considered even remotely objective? That they accurately measure general population variables is accepting really bad science as “fact”. With the Monster Logo blinking on the page and the “helpful” links to the cited TPR’s and career sites it’s patently self-serving at the very least.

    I don’t doubt any of the reported trends since nearly every legitimate retrospective measure has seen them for months. My issue is with the framework around which this data is presented. It’s like relying on a TV commercial to make informed decisions about your health.

    Advertorial is supposed to be subtly transparent but this has a blinking neon sign pointing at it.

  2. Dave, I understand your antipathy to self-serving reports, whitepapers, surveys and the like. But that doesn’t mean we should throw out the baby with the bath water.

    The surveys I mention in the article with its uncompensated, yet helpful links are merely two of dozens that point to profound changes in the global economy that are likely to be permanent even after the recession is well in our rear-view mirror. That these studies and surveys are financed by businesses is not surprising nor especially troubling, at least to me. Who else is doing such research? Academics? Certainly, which is one reason Vivek Wadhwa is included. Unfortunately, the list of non-commercial entities undertaking such research as an intellectual exercise is tiny.

    Discounting the research simply because the sponsor figured it was a good way to get some PR, doesn’t make sense to me.

  3. I definitely agree with John. The tea leaves are there and show there will be mass exodus’ of people leaving their companies because their companies were more interested in the bottom line dollars than the people who helped them to get there during the good times.

    The cliche’ that people are expendable will no longer hold true. Our workforce will be much different and yet no one seems to give a hoot about how they are going to retain their best employees as the new job market will begin to unfold.

    Employee engagement with A-level talent needs to be developed now because once they leave, they do not come back.

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