NEW YORK, N.Y. May 1, 2013– Despite lingering economic challenges, American workers are increasingly showing greater confidence when it comes to the economy, their employers, and even their ability to find a new job, according to the Randstad Employee Confidence Index released today. In fact, outlook on macroeconomic conditions, which measures worker sentiment in the strength of the economy and availability of jobs, reached a post-recession high of 46.8 points, more than double what it was in April 2008 (20.9). The Employee Confidence Index also returned to pre-recession numbers at 57 points, a figure last seen in August 2007. The survey, which monitors U.S. workers’ personal confidence and tracks perspectives around jobs and the economy each month, was conducted online by Harris Interactive among over 1,200 employed U.S. adults in April, 2013.
“We are continuing to see a renewed sense of optimism across the U.S. workforce. The data reveals employees are feeling an increased sense of security about their own jobs, and the economy as a whole, despite relative global economy uncertainty,” said Jim Link, managing director at Randstad US. “We encourage employers to take small steps to further bolster employees’ outlook and loyalty to their company, such as recognizing exemplary work and enabling employees to acquire new skills.”
Randstad, the second largest HR services and staffing company in the world, has been tracking workforce trends and publishing the U.S. Employee Confidence Index since 2004. The Index tracks several measures of employee confidence, including micro- and macro-economic measures. The Employee Confidence Index score edged up to 57 points in April, buoying its steady upward climb from 53.9 in March, 53.5 in February, and 52.1 in January.
April’s survey also reveals that the majority of U.S. workers (60%) feel confident about the future of their current employers, and a plurality (44%) feel they would be able to find a new job if they desired. From a larger economic perspective, almost a third (32%) of U.S. employees continue to believe the economy is strengthening (consistent with 30% in both March and February).
Additional Key Findings:
- Age: Middle-aged workers are least confident. Workers aged 45-54 express the lowest Employee Confidence Index and Personal Confidence Index (which measures optimism in workers’ ability to find employment and in the health of their employers) numbers, compared to their older and younger employee counterparts (18-34; 35-44; 55+)
Age 18-34 Age 35-44 Age 45-54 Age 55+
Employee Confidence Index 59.4 55.4 52.1 59.1
Personal Confidence Index 68.3 67.7 61.4 70.0
- Region: Southern employees most confident. Two key measures of the survey – the Employee Confidence Index and the Personal Confidence Index – are highest in the South edging out other U.S. regions by 2-4 points in most cases.
Northeast Midwest South West
Employee Confidence Index 55.2 55.9 58.7 57.4
Personal Confidence Index 66.1 65.3 70.1 66.1
- More confidence among workforce doesn’t necessarily translate into action. While the Employee Confidence Index has shown a constant ascent, the Job Transition Index (which measures how likely workers are to look for a new job) has stagnated, indicating virtually no change in the number of employed individuals also in the job market.
January February March April
Employee Confidence Index 52.1 53.5 53.9 57.0
Job Transition Index 33 37 33 33
Randstad is a $22.0 billion global provider of HR services and the second largest staffing organization in the world. From temporary staffing to permanent placement to inhouse, professionals, search & selection, and HR Solutions, Randstad holds top positions around the world and has approximately 29,300 corporate employees and around 4,500 branches and inhouse locations in 39 countries around the world. Founded in 1960 and headquartered in Diemen, the Netherlands, Randstad Holding nv is listed on the NYSE Euronext Amsterdam.
Learn more at www.randstad.com and access Randstad’s panoramic US thought leadership knowledge center through its Workforce360 site that offers valuable insight into the latest economic indicators and HR trends shaping the world of work.
This April 2013 Randstad Employment Tracker was conducted online within the United States by Harris Interactive on behalf of Randstad between April 1-3, 2013 among a U.S. sample of 1,206 employed adults, aged 18 years and older. Results were weighted as needed for age, sex, race/ethnicity, income, education, and region. Propensity score weighting was also used to adjust for respondents’ propensity to be online.
All sample surveys and polls, whether or not they use probability sampling, are subject to multiple sources of error which are most often not possible to quantify or estimate, including sampling error, coverage error, error associated with nonresponse, error associated with question wording and response options, and post-survey weighting and adjustments. Therefore, Harris Interactive avoids the words “margin of error” as they are misleading. All that can be calculated are different possible sampling errors with different probabilities for pure, unweighted, random samples with 100% response rates. These are only theoretical because no published polls come close to this ideal.
Respondents for this survey were selected from among those who have agreed to participate in Harris Interactive surveys. The data have been weighted to reflect the composition of the U.S. adult population. Because the sample is based on those who agreed to be invited to participate in the Harris Interactive online research panel, no estimates of theoretical sampling error can be calculated.
About Harris Interactive
Harris Interactive is one of the world's leading market research firms, leveraging research, technology, and business acumen to transform relevant insight into actionable foresight. Known widely for the Harris Poll® and for pioneering innovative research methodologies, Harris offers proprietary solutions in the areas of market and customer insight, corporate brand and reputation strategy, and marketing, advertising, public relations and communications research. Harris possesses expertise in a wide range of industries including health care, technology, public affairs, energy, telecommunications, financial services, insurance, media, retail, restaurant, and consumer package goods. Additionally, Harris has a portfolio of multi-client offerings that complement our custom solutions while maximizing our client's research investment. Serving clients in more than 196 countries and territories through our North American and European offices, Harris specializes in delivering research solutions that help us - and our clients—stay ahead of what's next. For more information, please visit www.harrisinteractive.com.