In this space, we’ve touched on the recent phenomenon known as the ‘Great Resignation’. It’s a thing, and it’s real. Evidence from the U.S. Department of Labor reveals a sharp decline beginning in April, with a survey conducted by career site Monster.com finding that over 90% of our current workforce has considered quitting altogether or finding a new gig. If you’re an employee, you’re allowed to smile. If you’re an employer, you’re allowed to be nervous.

The power dynamic between employer and employee seems to be precariously swinging in favor of the workforce, and a new survey conducted by research firm Challenger Gray & Christmas is out with some late-breaking results that support this shift. Dubbed “The Great Reentry Survey”, this is what companies shared about their current employee’s mindset.

HR’s Growing Concerns

Respondents from the human resource departments who participated in the survey reveal that more than eight in 10 companies are currently having trouble filling open positions. And 68% of these survey participants are worried about the talent exodus. They’ve clearly put some thought into the possible factors that have put them on the defensive (for a change). Three-quarters of all respondents believe the leading cause for employee dissatisfaction is the desire for more flexibility. Many companies have resorted to “hybrid” work models, as there’s a consensus that this amounts to a minimum of three days in the office.

Battling Back With Incentives

By no means have companies thrown in the towel and accepted the possibility of a mass exodus on their watch. According to HR survey respondents, companies are willing to offer a dizzying array of incentives to recruit and retain employees. Over 60% have acquiesced to flexible work hours and remote-based options. Slightly less than half are offering more pay (46%), with almost 40% dangling signing bonuses as a perk. Less than a third have spent time on investing in individuals, such as leadership development, tuition reimbursement for continuing education, mentorship programs, and even student loan assistance. Perhaps what’s most surprising is that less than 10% have offered any type of concession for child care concerns.

We’re clearly dealing with an unprecedented environment, with employees openly questioning their career commitments. According to survey respondents from the HR side, over 80% report experiencing employee “pushback” on a full-time return to the office. Without a doubt, this is a volatile situation. And, a lot of workers likely won’t be feeling sorry for Corporate America anytime soon. Should that really be so surprising?

The main takeaway here is pretty simple. The conditions brought about by the pandemic have caused a fundamental shift in attitudes for a majority of our workforce. They’ve begun to learn a lesson we often preach at FranNet. Your future, and your potential, belong to you. You do have choices, and if you aren’t happy in your current situation, you owe it to yourself to explore your options in full—especially if you’re considering an entrepreneurial path forward.

If you’re in the market to investigate business ownership through franchising, make a no-cost, no-obligation appointment with a qualified FranNet representative who both lives and works in your area. Together, we can do our part to weather a mass corporate job exodus.