A new survey by Gartner, Inc says that only 34% of employees believe their pay is fair.
The Gartner survey of 3,523 employees in 2Q22 found that less than one-third of employees feel they are paid fairly.
Is inflation causing discontent?
Yet another survey by Remote.co found that many workers felt their salary was not keeping up with inflation.
According to the report, 80 percent of respondents said their current salary is not keeping up with inflation.
Additionally, 92 percent reported that inflation and recession concerns have affected their career and financial choices.
- Nearly half (47 percent) specified that inflation and recession concerns have pushed them to find or start looking for a higher-paying job.
- 31 percent said they took a side job or started freelancing.
- 45 percent reported that they were following a stricter household or personal budget.
- 23 percent said they’ve allocated more money towards savings or an emergency fund.
“With 90 percent of people saying they ‘need to work,’ workers everywhere are challenged by navigating their careers in an uncertain global economy,” said Sara Sutton, Founder, and CEO of Remote.co and FlexJobs. “These findings provide valuable insight into how economic pressures are influencing global professionals across industries, career levels, and locations,” Sutton concluded.
Perceived Pay Gaps are a driving force behind the growing discontent of workers across the United States. When workers feel that their pay is not keeping in line with inflation and companies are pulling in record profits, they become upset.
“Employees’ sensitivity to perceived pay gaps is being exacerbated by today’s economic conditions, including rising inflation and the hot labor market, which is causing a shift in compensation between tenured employees and new hires,” said Tony Guadagni, senior principal in the Gartner HR practice.
Financial Stress Is More Intense for Millennials
People in their 20s and 30s are building careers, establishing long-term relationships, and buying houses. The cost of doing those things was already high. In 2022, it’s reached another level. Putting gas in the car to go to work every day is a challenge. Younger millennials struggle more. They’re still building their career path, so salaries are lower.
The housing market is also a concern. The American Dream of owning your own home is getting more unattainable for millennials as home values increase and inventory is still limited. Meanwhile, the Fed is raising interest rates to “curb” inflation, making it even more difficult to afford a new home. This eliminates a major wealth-building option for this generation.
Vacations Are Becoming Less Affordable
Most people take a vacation when they’re stressed out. Unfortunately, rising prices have made that almost impossible for some folks, particularly those early in their careers making less money. Who can afford to gas up the car and go on a road trip? Airfare used to be cheap, but planes use gas too. Airfare is up 25% since last year.
Even staycations are more expensive. Energy services (natural gas and electricity) are up 19.4%, and it costs 12.2% more to eat at home this year. Sitting in front of the TV, blasting the air conditioner, and munching on refrigerator food sounds great. Paying for it won’t relieve any financial stress. It’s almost cheaper to go to work. Take-out food only went up 7.7%.
Shortages Are Part of the “New Normal”
Baby boomers remember gas lines and recessions. Millennials saw the longest bull market in history unfold during their adult lives. That was before the 2020 pandemic. This year, we’re seeing supply line disruptions, slow economic recovery, and global conflict. Many have called the post-pandemic years the “new normal.” Shortages are part of it.
Some of those shortages are internal because people simply can’t afford what they could in the past. In some cases, items we once bought at the market are no longer in stock or are on backorder. The supermarket shelves have empty spaces on them. That’s a new experience for millennials. Hopefully, we’ll see that turnaround soon.