Category Archives: Furloughs/Layoffs/Turnover

Job Satisfaction: 2016 Edition: Tightening Labor Market Means More Opportunity, More Satisfaction

Source: Michelle Kan, Gad Levanon, Allen Li, Rebecca L. Ray, Conference Board, Report Number: TCB-1605-Job Satisfaction 2016, July 2016
(subscription required)

From the abstract:
According to the current edition of The Conference Board Job Satisfaction survey, nearly half of US workers (49.6 percent) are satisfied with their jobs. After improving incrementally since the postrecession recovery period, overall job satisfaction is at its highest since 2005. The rapidly declining unemployment rate, combined with increased hiring, job openings, and quits, signals a seller’s market, where the employer demand for workers is growing faster than the available supply.

For the first time, a map of job satisfaction by state is included in the report.

Also available for download is a Chartbook containing graphics that were not published in the report but were included in previous editions of Job Satisfaction.

Does Pension Plan Structure Affect Turnover Patterns?

Source: Gregory B. Lewis and Rayna L. Stoycheva, Journal of Public Administration Research and Theory, Advance Access, First published online: May 28, 2016
(subscription required)

From the abstract:
Public pension plans face pressures to cut costs. Although government costs and retiree benefits drive changes in retirement plans, policy makers should also consider impacts on turnover and retirement behavior. In the mid-1980s, Congress moved new federal employees from a traditional defined benefit (DB) pension plan to a new hybrid plan, comprised of a smaller DB plan, Social Security, and a new defined contribution (DC) plan. Early analyses of the change from the Civil Service Retirement System (CSRS) to the Federal Employees Retirement System (FERS) found a decrease in turnover rates, but our analysis of a 1% sample of federal personnel records from 1979 to 2009 indicates that exit rates for federal employees in their late 30s to early 50s are one-third higher under FERS than they were for comparable employees under CSRS. Conversions to fully DC plans by state and local governments could have even larger impacts on the stability of their workforces.

Predictors of Intent to Leave the Job Among Home Health Workers: Analysis of the National Home Health Aide Survey

Source: Robyn Stone, Jess Wilhelm, Christine E. Bishop, Natasha S. Bryant, Linda Hermer, and Marie R. Squillace, The Gerontologist, Advance Access, First published online: April 21, 2016
(subscription required)

From the abstract:
Purpose: To identify agency policies and workplace characteristics that are associated with intent to leave the job among home health workers employed by certified agencies.

Design and Methods: Data are from the 2007 National Home and Hospice Care Survey/National Home Health Aide Survey, a nationally representative, linked data set of home health and hospice agencies and their workers. Logistic regression with survey weights was conducted to identify agency and workplace factors associated with intent to leave the job, controlling for worker, agency, and labor market characteristics.

Results: Job satisfaction, consistent patient assignment, and provision of health insurance were associated with lower intent to leave the job. By contrast, being assigned insufficient work hours and on-the-job injuries were associated with greater intent to leave the job after controlling for fixed worker, agency, and labor market characteristics. African American workers and workers with a higher household income also expressed greater intent to leave the job.

Implications: This is the first analysis to use a weighted, nationally representative sample of home health workers linked with agency-level data. The findings suggest that intention to leave the job may be reduced through policies that prevent injuries, improve consistency of client assignment, improve experiences among African American workers, and offer sufficient hours to workers who want them.

Wages, Caregiver Shortages Top List of Home Health Threats

Source: Amy Baxter, Home Health Care News, May 24, 2016

Private duty home care providers are more concerned about caregiver shortages and wage pressures than ever before, according to a recent study. For the first time, wage pressures are being named as one of the top three threats of the home care industry, Home Care Pulse’s 2016 Benchmarking Study found.

….Caregiver turnover was also named as a threat, with 22.4% of participants naming it in their top three concerns. The response is similar to 2015, when 22.1% said this was a top concern, compared to 13.4% in 2014.

A new threat this year that participants listed was rising minimum wage rates, as the fight for a $15 minimum wage has gained significant momentum. While only a handful of states have enacted a $15 minimum wage, including California, Illinois and New York, more are slated to consider the limit and numerous cities have acted on the initiative, including Seattle.

More than a quarter—26.6% of participants—said increasing minimum wages was a top threat for the industry. This response wasn’t even measured the previous two years….

Working Longer: The Disappearing Divide between Work Life and Retirement

Source: Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research

From the summary:
….This study extends that research and examines new topics, including older workers’ efforts to improve their career skills and their plans to adjust the parameters of work in the later stages of their working life. The survey also tracks a number of attitudes and behaviors that were examined in 2013 surrounding issues facing older workers. The AP-NORC Center, with funding from The Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, conducted 1,075 interviews with a nationally representative sample of Americans age 50 and older.

These results provide insights for employers navigating new terrain as they face an older workforce, and for policymakers grappling with how to help older Americans with the transition into retirement.

Five things you should know from The AP-NORC Center’s Working Longer Study Among adults age 50 and older:
– Fifty-five percent plan to work past the age of 65 or have already done so.
Nearly two-thirds of those deciding to work past age 65 say they made this choice mostly for financial reasons.
– Twenty-five percent of those who are not retired say they never plan to retire.
– More than a quarter of workers have received job training or additional education in the past five years.
– Forty-one percent have spent at least 20 years working for the same employer, including 18 percent who have spent at least 30 years doing so. ….

Poll: Age, income factors in staying with single employer
Source: Adam Allington, Associated Press, May 10, 2016

A new poll says more than 40 percent of America’s baby boomers stayed with their employer for more than 20 years. But it’s unlikely that their children or grandchildren will experience the same job tenure.
The survey of more than 1,000 Americans 50 and older by the Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research shows that 41 percent of those employed workers have spent two decades with the same company, including 18 percent who’ve stayed at least 30 years. …. The shift may be less about differences in attitude than changes in jobs — and benefits. About two-thirds of those who stayed with one employer for 20 or more years had a pension, according to the survey, compared with only a third of those who had never stayed that long with one employer. Those defined benefit pension plans are slowly disappearing. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that only 18 percent of private workers were covered by these plans in 2011, down from 35 percent in the early 1990s. ….

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
(subscription required)

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
(subscription required)

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
(subscription required)

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
(subscription required)

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. ….