SAN FRANCISCO, Sept. 29, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- The pandemic has forced many companies to shift to remote work for the foreseeable future and, as a result, as many as 52% of job seeking students are concerned about their mental health while working remotely. Almost half (49%) of these students report increased anxiety due to the economic climate created by coronavirus, leading them to reprioritize their mental health. These are recent findings from a new survey from Handshake, the number one site for early talent to find jobs and get hired.
As this digitally native generation transitions into being a part of a new, largely remote workforce, its members not only face the challenge of finding employment in a challenging job market, but also need to adapt to a virtual work environment. Of the students surveyed, 66% report that prioritizing their mental health is important post the pandemic, and 63% feel that it's "important" to "very important" that their future employer provides mental health benefits to help employees cope with the aftermath of COVID-19.
"There is no doubt that this generation of students is entering the workforce at an incredibly challenging time. While the pandemic has ushered in a new way of work, it has also created an essential dialogue around the importance of mental health in the workplace," said Christine Cruzvergara VP of Higher Education & Student Success at Handshake. "Gen Z is a generation that is used to creating change and making an impact. It is encouraging to see these young people advocate for themselves and ask employers to address their mental health needs on an ongoing basis."
With many companies adapting to working remotely for the long term, students' biggest concern with making this shift is feeling isolated (53%), followed by a lack of work/life balance (50%). Many young workers (48%) are also concerned that working remotely will reduce their productivity, and 44% believe that working remotely will challenge their ability to meet new people and continue to build existing relationships.
"In these unprecedented times, being able to listen and adapt is immensely valuable, and we know that the employers we work with are just as invested as we are in providing their teams with the right tools and resources to succeed," said Garrett Lord, CEO of Handshake. "The recent launch of our virtual recruitment solution validates our commitment to help our partners address the challenges of operating in a remote work environment by enabling authentic personal engagement and fostering meaningful connections between job seeking students and employers."
In order to further support students during this time, Handshake is kicking off a Mental Health Monday series to educate students on the importance of supporting their mental health by releasing informative content and actionable resources across their blog and social platforms.
Handshake is the number one site for college students to find a job. Today, the Handshake community includes 17 million students and young alumni at over 1,000 colleges and universities — including 120+ minority-serving institutions. We connect up-and-coming talent across all 50 states with nearly 500,000 employers recruiting on Handshake — from every Fortune 500 company to thousands of small businesses, nonprofits, startups, and more. Handshake is democratizing opportunity and ensuring college students have the support they need to find a great job and kick-off a meaningful career regardless of where they go to school, what they choose as a major, and who they know.
STUDENT SURVEY METHODOLOGY
This online survey of 1,003 US college students, primarily targeting 17-24 years, was conducted by Propeller Insights on behalf of Handshake between June 26 and June 30, 2020. Propeller Insights strives to achieve a statistically significant sample that meets the industry standard of a 95 percent confidence level and a 5-percentage margin of error, based on the population being represented for all online quantitative surveys.