Randstad: Worker Confidence Virtually Unchanged in March; Personal Confidence Heightens

Apr 02, 2013, 09:00 ET from Randstad

NEW YORK, April 2, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- The Randstad Employee Confidence Index edged up for the second consecutive time, reaching 53.9 in March, despite confidence in the job market declining slightly. Although workers are feeling more apprehensive in the availability of jobs, confidence in their personal ability to find a new job and in the future of their current employers remains intact—these combined personal confidence factors reached the largest gain since April 2010. The survey, which monitors U.S. workers' personal confidence and tracks perspectives around jobs and the economy each month, was conducted online by Harris Interactive among 1,185 employed U.S. adults in March, 2013.

"This month we saw an interesting, though not too surprising, contrast in workers' feelings around the broader economy and their own individual confidence levels," said Jim Link, managing director of human resources for Randstad US. "Workers seem to be increasingly cautious about what's happening in the economy as they wait to see the potential impacts from the sequestration and the $85 billion government spending cuts that took effect on March 1. In addition to the seemingly never-ending budget debates on Capitol Hill, Americans are likely feeling wary due to continued gas price and payroll tax concerns.  

"Even so, it is important to note the heightened personal confidence reported. Our Personal Confidence Index, which measures optimism in workers' ability to find employment and in the health of their employers, rose by nearly four points—making it the largest gain in two years—which is very encouraging. In the midst of economic unease, US workers are clearly feeling good about job security, the health of their employers, as well as their ability to find alternative employment if necessary—which could have very costly implications for organizations if this percentage of the workforce took action. With more sustained stock market and housing price gains, as well as continued job creation, we expect personal confidence to continue to strengthen over the next several months."

Look Inside the Report:

Overall Confidence Rises Slightly in March

  • Overall confidence was maintained as the Randstad Employee Confidence Index increased slightly from 53.5 in February to 53.9 in March
  • Confidence in macro conditions dropped by 2.8 points, though personal confidence levels soared with the largest gain recorded in more than two years (up 3.7 points from February)

U.S. Workers Uncertain About Job Availability

  • Just over half of US workers surveyed, 52 percent, believe there are fewer jobs available (an increase from 47 percent in February)
  • Even so, over four-in-ten workers (42 percent) feel confident in their ability to get a new job if they searched

Workers Confident in the Future of their Companies

  • Workers' confidence in the future of their employers spiked from 56 percent in February to 63 percent this month
  • A majority of US workers, 55 percent, do not plan on looking for a job in the next 12 months

The Randstad U.S. Employee Confidence Index has measured workforce trends across the country since 2004.

About Randstad
Randstad is a $22.0 billion global provider of HR services and the second largest staffing organization in the world. From temporary staffing to permanent placement to inhouse, professionals, search & selection, and HR Solutions, Randstad holds top positions around the world and has approximately 29,300 corporate employees and around 4,500 branches and inhouse locations in 39 countries around the world. Founded in 1960 and headquartered in Diemen, the Netherlands, Randstad Holding nv is listed on the NYSE Euronext Amsterdam.

Learn more at www.randstad.com and access Randstad's panoramic US thought leadership knowledge center through its Workforce360 site that offers valuable insight into the latest economic indicators and HR trends shaping the world of work.

This March 2013 Randstad Employment Tracker was conducted online within the United States by Harris Interactive on behalf of Randstad between March 4-6, 2013 among a U.S. sample of 1,185 employed adults, aged 18 years and older. 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 Harris Interactive
Harris Interactive is one of the world's leading market research firms, leveraging research, technology, and business acumen to transform relevant insight into actionable foresight. Known widely for the Harris Poll® and for pioneering innovative research methodologies, Harris offers proprietary solutions in the areas of market and customer insight, corporate brand and reputation strategy, and marketing, advertising, public relations and communications research. Harris possesses expertise in a wide range of industries including health care, technology, public affairs, energy, telecommunications, financial services, insurance, media, retail, restaurant, and consumer package goods. Additionally, Harris has a portfolio of multi-client offerings that complement our custom solutions while maximizing our client's research investment. Serving clients in more than 196 countries and territories through our North American and European offices, Harris specializes in delivering research solutions that help us - and our clients—stay ahead of what's next. For more information, please visit www.harrisinteractive.com.

SOURCE Randstad