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Learning & Development Budget Increase to Continue

Learning & Development Budget Increase to Continue

Global companies continue to work toward gender equality – 18 out of 3,895 participating in a recent survey say they qualify as gender balanced…that’s up from 10 last year. Pay parity, parental leave policies, and the number of female executives are some of the criteria considered. Women still make up less than 50% of the workforce, and only 18% of the executive level (up from 17% last year). Women in the CEO and CFO role comprise 5% and 13% respectively, 25% of senior management, and 37% of the workforce.

While gender equality attempts advancement, women are experiencing high levels of anxiety regarding their careers. Even though 84% of women feel they are skilled enough to take their career to the next level, their anxiety holds them back. Over 50% of Gen Z feel anxious about the job with 34% stating their ‘skill set was not usable in the workplace’ and 33% feeling ‘their next career move was out of their control’.

Maybe this will help with the anxiety – learning and development budgets continue to increase for many companies, and 67% of HR managers responding to a recent survey expect the trend to keep on going in 2022.

With over half (52%) of companies experiencing a skills gap, that seems to be a top reason for the L&D initiative. As such 51% are training existing employees with another 32% planning on hiring new workers. Most also expect to offer upskilling or reskilling training this year.

However, 52% stated they received push-back when trying to get budget approval as 54% found that their ‘organizational leadership often sees L&D as a cost, rather than an investment”.

How much of a budget are we talking here? Well, on average the annual L&D budgets looks to be between $500-$1,000 per employee (29% of those responding) and between $1,000 and $3,000 per employee (28% of those responding).

Equal pay has become the topic du jour, spurred on by the ‘Great Resignation’. Over half responding to a recent survey (63%) feel that the high volume of folks quitting give them leverage to negotiate better pay in their next job opp.

Another 41% of female employees feel the gender pay gap is a ‘serious issue’ at their company – 85% state they deserve a pay increase. Employers – 63% of survey respondents stated they ‘prefer to work at a company that discloses pay information’ but only 19% said their company shares pay ranges internally.

U.S. initial jobless claims is now at their lowest since September 1969 as of last week, per the U.S. Department of Labor. “That initial unemployment claims fell to a jaw-dropping 187,000 in the most recent week is proof that the labor market is growing even tighter and we should expect hiring to stay at least as strong as it’s been over the last few months,” Robert Frick, corporate economist at the Navy Federal Credit Union, told The Hill.

The U.S. economy is thought to have reached a turning point with the COVID-19 pandemic, making the current state the ‘new normal’. The very low interest rates and modest inflation may be changing due to the economic impact of the invasion of Ukraine, however.

Automation is expected to take 7% of total jobs (11 million U.S. jobs) by 2032. However, 9.6 million new jobs will be created during this time, bringing the lost job total to less than 1.5 million. The areas that will welcome these new jobs include renewable energy, smart infrastructure, and professional services.

The current tight labor market is having companies second-guess their previous hiring practices. A good chunk of hiring decision-makers (39%) state they have hired candidates they previously wouldn’t have considered. Another 63% have ‘overlooked hard or soft skills when hiring’ and 45% ‘overlooked an applicant’s ability to pass a background check or drug screen’.

The Texas state capital of Austin has had the largest growth in average salary for software engineers, increasing 9% in 2021 to $151,900. Over in California, the San Francisco Bay Area still offers the highest salaries across the board at $168,000 per year in 2021. However, smaller tech hubs like Seattle, Chicago, and Austin saw higher salary growth than the traditional tech hubs.

In what could be a controversial topic, a recent report has listed the most boring jobs. The top two on the list? Data analysis and accounting. The top job that fell under ‘most interesting’ was performing arts and science. One thing to remember, though, some of the so-called boring jobs pay better than some that are deemed most exciting or interesting.

Hiring for Q2 is surrounded by an optimistic outlook – 46% of employers around the globe plan to hire that quarter. Another 16% expect to reduce their staff, which brings the seasonally adjusted net employment outlook to 29%.

The majority of workers in the U.S. (53%) are open to considering other offers and leaving their current employers. Another 44% are actually actively looked for their next opportunity in Q4 of 2021 or were planning on doing so in Q1 of 2022.

Retirees are coming on back to the workforce. A recent report has 3% of retired workers coming back to work in February. Some reasons for this are the impact of inflation combined with a volatile stock market increasing financial need as well as covid vaccinations and strong demand.

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