According to Spherion Survey, Workers' Outlook on Job Security Remains High, Overall Employee Confidence Holds Steady

  • Nearly Eighty Percent of Workers Remain Confident in their Personal Job Security
  • Forty-Eight Percent Express Confidence in Their Ability to Find a New Job
  • Sixty-Three Percent of Workers are Confident in the Future of Their Employer

FT. LAUDERDALE, Fla.,// PRNewswire-FirstCall // -- The Spherion Employee Confidence Index remained virtually unchanged in September, declining 0.3 points to 47.3. The survey, conducted by Harris Interactive® on behalf of Spherion Corporation (NYSE: SFN) measures U.S. workers' confidence in their personal employment situation and optimism in the macroeconomic environment. The Index revealed that while workers' confidence in the future of their current employer decreased slightly by two percentage points to 63 percent, 76 percent of workers still believe it is unlikely they will lose their jobs in the next 12 months.

Interestingly, workers' macroeconomic confidence experienced a slight uptick in September, yet fewer workers reported confidence in their ability to find a new job and 36 percent of workers reported that they are likely to look for new jobs over the next year.

"While this month's index does not reflect the full impact of the crisis on Wall Street, it is encouraging to note that in the early days of the financial turmoil, workers were generally confident about their personal job security," said Roy Krause, president and CEO of Spherion Corporation. "As we look ahead, it is important to remember that while the effects of the current financial situation will be far-reaching, sectors such as healthcare, education, legal services, energy and government are holding up fairly well. We are continuing to identify potential opportunities for displaced job seekers to parlay their skills from one industry to another and advising workers, such as realtors, mortgage specialists and financial services to think outside the box and be flexible to other career opportunities."

Results from the September Spherion Employment Report:

Employee Confidence Holds Steady: The Spherion Employee Confidence Index remained relatively unchanged with a 0.3 percentage point decrease to 47.3 percent in September. The Index, which measures workers' confidence in their personal employment situation and optimism in the macroeconomic environment, reveals that while workers' confidence in the future of their current employer decreased slightly by two percentage points to 63 percent, 12 percent of workers believe more jobs are available.

Details of the Index:

Macroeconomic Confidence:

  • Eleven percent of workers believe the economy is getting stronger, increasing three percentage points from August.
  • Twelve percent of U.S. adult workers believe there are more jobs available, an increase of one percentage point from the previous month.
  • Personal Confidence:
  • Sixty-three percent of U.S. adult workers feel confident in the future of their current employer, a two percentage point decrease from August.
  • The percentage of U.S. adult workers confident in their ability to find a new job decreased three percentage points from August to 48 percent.
  • Job Security: Just Over Three-quarters of Workers Say it is Unlikely They Will Lose Their Job
  • Seventy-six percent of U.S. workers say it is unlikely they will lose their jobs in the next 12 months, unchanged since June.
  • Job Transition: Percentage of Workers Likely to Look for a New Job Drops Slightly
  • Thirty-six percent of workers are likely to look for a new job in the next twelve months, a decrease of one percentage point from August.

About the Spherion Employment Report

As part of the Spherion® Emerging Workforce® Series of employment surveys, the monthly Spherion Employment Report provides a snapshot of the latest workforce trends across the country and is issued in conjunction with state and national labor market releases. Three key indices are measured: the Spherion Job Security Index, which captures how likely respondents think it is that they will lose their job or that their job will be eliminated in the next 12 months; the Spherion Job Transition Index, which captures how likely respondents are to look for a new job in the next 12 months and the Employee Confidence Index that measures employees' overall confidence in the economy, their employer and their ability to find other employment. The Employee Confidence Index is calculated from the results of four components that reflect these aspects of employee confidence. For each component item a 'score' is calculated by taking the difference of the percentage of positive responses and the percentage of negative responses. These four scores are then averaged to indicate an overall level of employee confidence, with each score ranking on a scale from 0 (no confidence) to 100 (complete confidence). A reading above 50 indicates a positive confidence level.

Methodology

This September 2008 Spherion Employment Tracker was conducted online within the United States by Harris Interactive on behalf of Spherion Corporation between September 2-4 and 10-12, 2008 among a U.S. sample of 2,624 employed adults, aged 18 years and older (August 2008 n=2,861). 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 Spherion

Spherion Corporation (NYSE: SFN) is a leading recruiting and staffing company that provides integrated solutions to meet the evolving needs of companies and job candidates. As an industry pioneer for more than 60 years, Spherion has sourced, screened and placed millions of individuals in temporary, temp-to-hire and full-time jobs.

With approximately 700 locations in the United States and Canada, Spherion delivers innovative workforce solutions that improve business performance. Spherion provides its services to more than 8,000 customers, from Fortune 500 companies to a wide range of small and mid-size organizations. Employing more than 300,000 people annually through its network, Spherion is one of North America's largest employers. Spherion operates under the following brands: Spherion Staffing Services Group for administrative, clerical and light industrial workers; Technisource for technology professionals and solutions; The Mergis Group for accounting and finance and other professional positions; Todays Office Professionals for specialty administrative personnel; and Spherion Recruitment Process Outsourcing. To learn more, visit http://www.spherion.com/ .

About Harris Interactive

Harris Interactive is a global leader in custom market research. With a long and rich history in multimodal research that is powered by our science and technology, we assist clients in achieving business results. Harris Interactive serves clients globally through our North American, European and Asian offices and a network of independent market research firms. For more information, please visit http://www.harrisinteractive.com/ .

SOURCE: Spherion Corporation

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