Feeling the Squeeze: Are Workers Being Left Behind by Inflation?

Economic pressures are intensifying for job seekers, and professionals as inflation rates and fears of a recession grow.

According to a recent 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.

“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.

The report was compiled by Remote.co, which surveyed over 1,100 global professionals between October 13 and October 30, 2022, to better understand how inflation and recession concerns impact workers’ career decisions, financial health, and sentiments on job security.

Happy Man Farmer Driving Tractor Looking At Camera
Image Credit: diego_cervo via DepositPhotos.com.

Be Proactive

Jonathon Bird, Farnam Financial,  suggests being proactive with your employer can help you increase your salary. He said, “Be proactive with your employer – ask what trainings or certifications could directly lead to a raise and promotion. You can use some of your savings towards certification, but often employers are willing to cover the costs. There are also government subsidies you can use. The American Opportunity Tax Credit for example, can apply $2,500 towards tuition and fees.

If you’re proactive and make yourself more valuable, employers reward this with higher pay because they don’t want to lose you.”

Cut Your Losses

However, if that doesn’t work, then don’t be afraid to cut your losses and leave, “If you have been increasing your skills and certifications but haven’t received a raise, it’s time to search for other job offers. You’re likely to receive a higher paying offer which you can either take or leverage for a raise with your current employer. My previous employer was never so eager to give me a raise as when I was ready to leave for a better paying opportunity.”

Loving your work can also help you outpace inflation; he concludes, “If you’re unhappy in your current job, set aside time every week to explore new jobs or careers that you’ll feel more passionately about. Once you’ve found one, reach out and talk to people in this role. If you express a genuine interest, you’ll be surprised at how many people will spend time with you and share what they know. Networking this way can lead directly to working in a field you love. When you’re working in a field you love, spending extra time developing your skills won’t feel like work. You’ll do so well that you’re far more likely to increase your wages faster than the rate of inflation.”

A 4-Point Plan

Blaine Thiederman MBA, CFP Progress Wealth Management, says, “The most important thing you can do as a worker is try to earn more money. Budgeting and cutting back, while valid solutions, aren’t the end all, be all. We can only eat so much rice and beans.”
He suggests his clients do the following four things:
  • Consider a second job as a contractor. Second jobs can be part-time, remote, and low-stress. Some great side hustles can include being an affiliate marketer.
  • Consider house-hacking, where you can rent out a room in your home, a guest house on your property, or an RV (like an airstream) on Airbnb or to a long-term tenant. This can be a game-changer as some people earn well over a thousand dollars per month on Airbnb renting out rooms or by renting out rooms to a tenant that you trust.
  • Consider renting out a second car to consumers on Turo.
  • Renegotiate your income with your employer if it makes sense. The first step is to benchmark your earnings and understand whether you’re getting paid what your labor is worth. You can do this by visiting a website like shrm.com or glassdoor.com and analyzing your compensation. Once you’ve figured out a rough estimate of how much your labor is worth and whether there’s a gap, it’s important to approach your manager with the analysis and ask them for a raise to the salary you’re worth.

 

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Hi! I am a millennial mom with a passion for personal finance. I have always been “into” personal finance but got inspired to start my blog after a period of extended unemployment. That experience really changed the way I viewed my relationship with money and the importance of accessible personal finance education.