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Workers Talk About Quitting as Part of the ‘Great Resignation.' Employers Aren't Buying It

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Workers may be dreaming of quitting their job as part of the post-pandemic "Great Resignation," yet employers aren't necessarily buying it, a survey from human resources software company Tinypulse found.

On average, human resources and C-suite leaders expect only 8% of their employees will choose to quit once Covid restrictions are fully lifted, according to the survey. A quarter believe no one will quit. The firm polled 770 companies worldwide from May 10 to May 24, with the majority of the responses coming from the U.S.

That stands in stark contrast to other employee surveys. On the high end, career website Monster found 95% of workers are currently considering changing jobs. Separately, Microsoft research found that 41% of the global workforce is weighing leaving their current employer this year.

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"If we trust all of that other survey data, it means that HR leaders and C-suite leaders are going to be surprised with the 'Great Resignation,'" said Dr. Elora Voyles, psychologist and people scientist at Tinypulse.

"To what extent, we don't know yet."

David Niu, founder and CEO of Tinypulse, expects the reality to fall somewhere in between 8% and 41%.

It's also happening at the same time employers are focusing on hiring and remote onboarding, the survey found.

"They just have to be super-aware that they may have a leaky bucket, where they're pouring in new talent and losing great talent," Niu warned.

Complicating matters, it has been difficult to find candidates for open roles. Tinypulse found that 39% of human resources leaders said it was more challenging to fill jobs.

"There might be this kind of 'Great Resignation,' and then it might be harder to fill those roles once those employees leave," Voyles said.

"That may not be at the forefront of HR leaders and C suite executives' minds right now," she added. "But it could become very relevant once those roles open up."

Hybrid model 'here to stay'

The reasons employees want to quit are numerous, from not wanting to return to the office after getting used to remote work to the realization that the job isn't what they want. Others may be simply exhausted from trying to juggle everything during the pandemic.

To be sure, employers are aware of employee burnout. Three out of four reported their remote workers were experiencing exhaustion, more so than those who worked in the office and those who worked hybrid, with some days in the office and some at home.

That's part of the reason why 64% of employers believe a hybrid model is the best approach to work going forward. They also reported that hybrid work optimizes performance and leads to better employee retention.

A separate study by research firm Global Workplace Analytics estimates 25% to 30% of the U.S. workforce will be working from home multiple days a week by the end of 2021.

"That hybrid model is here to stay," Niu said. "Almost every large company will have to have some hybrid option to maintain and staff their teams."

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Disclosure: NBCUniversal and Comcast Ventures are investors in Acorns.

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