Category Archives: Furloughs/Layoffs/Turnover

Are Public Sector Jobs Recession-proof? Were They Ever?

Source: Jason L. Kopelman, Harvey S. Rosen, Public Finance Review, Vol. 44 no. 3, May 2016
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From the abstract:
We use data from the Displaced Worker Surveys from 1984 to 2012 to investigate the differences in job loss rates between workers in the public and private sectors. Our focus is on how recessions affect the differential between job loss rates in the two sectors. We find that even after accounting for worker characteristics, the probability of job loss is higher for private sector workers than for public sector workers at all levels of government. The advantage of public sector employment in terms of job loss rates generally increases during recessions for all groups of public sector workers. Thus, the answer to the question posed in the title is that public sector jobs, while not generally recession-proof, do offer more security than private sector jobs, and the advantage widens during recessions. These patterns are present across genders, races, and educational groups.
Other versions:
Are Public Sector Jobs Recession-Proof? Were They Ever?
Source: Jason L. Kopelman, Harvey S. Rosen, National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER), NBER Working Paper No. 20692, November 2014
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What makes home health workers think about leaving their job? The role of physical injury and organizational support

Source: Ahyoung Anna Lee & Yuri Jang, Home Health Care Services Quarterly, Published online: February 1, 2016
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From the abstract:
Based on the job demands-resources (JD-R) model, this study explored the role of physical injury and organizational support in predicting home health workers’ turnover intention. In a sample of home health workers in Central Texas (n = 150), about 37% reported turnover intention. The logistic regression model showed that turnover intention was 3.23 times more likely among those who had experienced work-related injury. On the other hand, organizational support was found to reduce the likelihood of turnover intention. Findings suggest that injury and organizational support should be prioritized in prevention and intervention efforts to promote home health workers’ safety and retention.

Modifying At-Will Employment Contracts

Source: Rachel S. Arnow-Richman, University of Denver – Sturm College of Law, Legal Studies Research Paper No. 16-05, February 3, 2016

From the abstract:
Long-term employment relationships are constantly in flux: terms of compensation, company policies, and a variety of other conditions of work are routinely altered over the course of an employee’s job. In cases involving at-will employment, the economic realities and power dynamics are such that changes in terms are likely to be introduced unilaterally by the employer, often without advance notice. To date, however, neither courts nor commentators have holistically considered this problem of “midterm modifications” – contractual documents imposed post-hire on implicit or explicit threat of termination. Bringing together the law of noncompetes, arbitration agreements, and employee handbooks, this Article calls for a universal reasonable notice rule for all midterm modifications. Under this rule, courts would enforce midterm modifications only where the worker received reasonable advance notice of the employer’s proposed change. The Article justifies this move as a means of achieving good faith modifications consistent with contemporary modification law against the backdrop of employment at will. Under employment at will, employers are permitted absolute subjective discretion to choose whom to employ under what terms. However, the duty of good faith must be understood as imposing procedural limitations in addition to substantive constraints. Procedural good faith means that the employer must act fairly in carrying out discretionary modifications otherwise immune from substantive review. An employer’s choice to impose new terms with immediate effect precludes an employee from exercising what is often his or her only form of bargaining power – the ability to convincingly threaten to leave. Rejecting retrograde approaches to unilateral modifications that turn on the presence or absence of consideration, the Article argues that courts should police directly the risk of coercive modifications. Midterm modifications that significantly affect terms of employment should be permitted only where the employer provides enough advance notice to allow the employee time, not only to meaningfully consider the proposed change, but also to compare and secure alternate

Turnover among Community Mental Health Workers in Ohio

Source: Ashley M. Bukach, Farida K. Ejaz, Nicole Dawson, Robert J. Gitter, Administration and Policy in Mental Health and Mental Health Services Research, First online: 11 December 2015
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From the abstract:
This study examined turnover of community mental health workers in 42 randomly selected mental health agencies in Ohio. The turnover rate in 2011 was 26 %. A regression analysis indicated that agencies with lower turnover offered higher maximum pay and were smaller in size, while those offering career advancement opportunities, such as career ladder programs, had higher turnover. The findings suggest that improving wages for workers is likely to reduce turnover. It is also possible that smaller agencies have lower turnover due to stronger relationships with workers and/or more successful hiring practices. Furthermore, turnover that occurs as a result of career advancement could have positive effects and should be examined separate from other types of turnover in the future.

In-home care agency takes steps to trim caregiver turnover

Source: Cathy Molitoris, Lancaster Online, November 15, 2015

….But Lancaster-based Independent Living Services is trying to stem the tide, by launching initiatives to combat burnout among its 175 caregivers. The initiatives — which include more hours, better training and more support — are hoped to cut its annual turnover rate from 60 percent to 40 percent…. “If we want to retain quality caregivers, we have to be able to provide hours,” Franey says. So the agency plans to provide full-time jobs even though it will cost more in salaries and benefits…. Boyd adds that spending money on the back end will reduce the upfront expenses that go into traditional recruitment methods. …. Franey and Boyd are also working hard to make sure their caregivers have the support they need to do their job well. “We created a lab in both of our facilities,” Franey says, noting that Independent Living Services also has an office in Tamaqua. “We’re offering hands-on training.” The lab, which opened in September, shifts the focus on training away from just communicating what needs to be done to an active learning experience, where caregivers can see firsthand how to do many of the tasks their job requires…. To better support caregivers, Accessing Independence also has started a safety mentor program. … In addition, the agency has created a transitional care attendant position for experienced care attendants. ….

Most People Have No Idea Whether They’re Paid Fairly

Source: Dave Smith, Harvard Business Review, October 5, 2015

Managers know that engaged employees are more effective. But despite the vast amount of employee engagement research out there, very little of it focuses on a person’s primary reason for employment in the first place: getting paid. PayScale, the compensation software company where I work, surveyed 71,000 employees to study the relationship between pay and employee engagement. The study results revealed that one of the top predictors of employee sentiment, including “satisfaction” and “intent to leave,” was a company’s ability to communicate clearly about compensation. In fact, open and honest discussion around pay was found to be more important than typical measures of employee engagement, such as career advancement opportunities, employer appreciation and future enthusiasm for the company. Pay is a crucial component of engagement because it’s not just a number; it’s an emotional measure reflecting how valued an employee feels by their employer. And it turns out, how people feel about their deal plays a huge role in how engaged they are in their work. While there’s still a lot to learn about the connection between the perception and reality of compensation, and how both relate to engagement, we identified a few interesting data points that may change how you talk to your employees about pay. ….

Turnover Intentions and Work Motivations of Millennial Employees in Federal Service

Source: Nevbahar Ertas, Public Personnel Management, Vol. 44 no. 3, September 2015
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From the abstract:
In the face of looming retirements in the federal service, retaining and motivating the next generation of workers has emerged as a critical concern for human resource professionals in federal agencies. While a growing body of work provides advice and strategies on making government work more inviting for the members of the Millennial generation, those born after 1982, not much is known about the turnover intentions of those already in public service. Do Millennial workers in the federal agencies resemble older workers in terms of their work motivations and turnover intentions? This study compares Millennial and older generation workers in U.S. federal agencies, in terms of their turnover intentions and work motivations. The analyses show that they are more likely than their older counterparts to report an intention to leave their jobs, and most work attributes do not matter more for Millennial workers’ decisions to leave.

Security staff turnover: a positive and a negative

Source: Russell Colling, Journal of Healthcare Protection Management, Vol. 31 no. 2, 2015

The prevailing opinion that excessive turnover of security staff is a negative and that little turnover is a positive, is not necessarily a correct one, according to the author. Either one can produce higher costs and lower program effectiveness, he says, recommending a “middle of the road goal of controlled turnover.”

Pay Just Part of Cities’ Solutions to Recruitment and Retention Challenges

Source: Ed Lamb HR News, Vol. 81 no. 7, July 2015
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….Though their timelines shift and the exact details vary, Las Vegas and Wausau have also labored under tight labor budgets, shrinking workforces and diminishing institutional memory for the better part of the past decade. Those two cities also had to navigate potentially contentious negotiations with public employee unions. In Wisconsin, Proposition 10 eliminated most collective bargaining rights for state and local employee who are not firefighters, law enforcement officials and other public safety workers. Las Vegas city workers are represented by a mix of six unions, plus those for fire crews and police. ….Recounting his experiences in Las Vegas, Tarwater said that union representatives recognized early that keeping jobs was a much more achievable goal than negotiating raises and enhanced benefits. Therefore, unions largely agreed to suspend collective bargaining in exchange for assurances that maximal efforts would be made to avoid layoffs and to rework contracts when the economy improved…. Significant aspects of the new union contracts Las Vegas has adopted include moving toward merit-based pay increases, cash bonuses awarded for exemplary performance in lieu of guaranteed annual raises and cost-of-living adjustments linked explicitly to the federal Consumer Price Index….