In March of 2021, my partner and I were out in the country on a wine tour celebrating my birthday (age here does not matter). We hired a private tour guide and as we travelled from winery to winery we chatted about this and that with the guide and of course, the hot topic of Covid, lockdowns and employment took up most of the conversation.
Our guide was explaining to us the impact Covid had on his business with the lockdowns, how he just managed to survive and if it was not for nature out in the country it would have been impactful on his mental health. This lead to discussing other businesses and business owners. He thought it was not the best idea for the Government to have handed out Job Keeper payments (a fund which allowed companies to pay staff while they were unable to work resulting in keeping them in employment). He believed it was not ideal, as it was only delaying the inevitable. He strongly believed it would not end well for organisations, as they will be holding onto staff that eventually they would not be able to keep anyway.
It is now the last quarter of 2022 and we are welcoming many different new trends in the employment market. One of those trends is the Great Redundancy. Here we see organisations letting people go and for many different reasons – one of them is financial. The money the Government handed out has dried up, consumers are spending less, and organisations have also learnt to operate with minimal staff. So the result – they are saying goodbye to their workforce.
I know we have written about The Great Resignation and the Quiet Quitting, so we promise you, this will be the last we discuss these topics, however, with such a massive wave of change, it is hard for us Career Coaches to ignore and it is still an impact on businesses and job seekers alike. So here it is, our very last opinion on ‘The Greats’ and why we do not believe many of them are so great for everyone.
The Great Redundancy
Is this a good thing? For businesses, possibly yes. They are cutting the fat out. They are learning to work with a lean workforce, maximising their efforts and of course, their financial spend. They are becoming more efficient and effective.
In many cases, one person can do a two or three person job. Of course, depending on the job. Let us take one large organisation which we know. They had six employees in the HR department. One employee took a file and placed it in the filing tray. Another collected that file from the tray and put it away. Does it really take two people to file a document? The person who worked in that department confided in us, explaining the department had three staff too many and most of the day they felt bored. It also prevented them from being able to move up in the company, as their skills were not fully utilised and whatever they did do was lost behind other five employees. They were not able to stand out!
You may think this is a one off case, however, it is not. Yes, you often hear about people doing the work of three and being paid for the work of one and really feeling the pressure with burnout. It is those people who make the loudest noise, that is all. But coming from a role where I myself sat and did nothing because my position was not needed, I can tell you, people would not look at me with sympathetic eyes as if I was pushed like a work horse. So I kept quiet and simply moved on peacefully. However, it is just as bad to be over staffed as under.
But what does this Great Redundancy mean to the employees? Well, loss of income and minor pause in their career. Suddenly, there are more unemployed individuals in the market. If this trend continues, we may see a rise in unemployment soon and that is not good for anyone, including the economy.
The Great Uncertainty
Where to from here? Who knows what the future holds for the employment market. We can tell you what we see – not what we hear. Because words are words, but seeing the reality is different – we see a skill shortage, we see people wanting more from their work and we see some businesses learning to do old things in new ways, therefore as a result we are seeing people not finding employment, companies are not filling positions and a very unstable employment market with rising living expenses. Sounds scary yes?
But, for some reason we are told differently. We are told unemployment is at an all time low. That there are job openings for every job seeker. Even I have heard for a while how easy it would be for me to now find a super high paying role within the HR industry; I could simply just walk into a position tomorrow. I humbly disagree, because since employees are so picky, employers too are cautious, and the other fact that my skills may not actually suit the open role. Me, or just anyone can not JUST walk into employment tomorrow.
Today, companies no longer want people to walk out on them as easily as before, so they too are more cautious about hiring staff, the same way job seekers are more cautious about a new company.
So, what do we think will happen in the future – well, another Great. The Great Reshuffle is in current play and people demanding more changes, flexibility and benefits for their work. But we believe this Great Reshuffle will lead to something more stable in the future (give it a few years).
People will take the time to learn new skills, up-skill, and become qualified to new roles and industries. Employers and employees will choose more wisely and the ideal matches will slowly start to form, where people will stay employed for longer. In the process of it all, some companies may not survive as they have no ability to keep up with financial pressures – this goes from lack of consumer spending and staff shortages. Some individuals may end up having to go back to old jobs to pay for living expenses which are on the rise, however, overall, things will settle and a new norm will begin and the Great everything will end…there you have it, you heard the prediction first here with My Career Angels.
If you are looking for a career change or been made redundant and not sure where to from here, then this is what we are here for. Reach out to us today and see how we can help you.
My Career Angels…helping you become who you want to be