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The balance of power is changing in the workplace

Work from home
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A study shows 31 percent of the global workforce is now working remotely and 26 percent of them say they would quit if forced to return to the workplace.

The job market around the world, and in the Tampa Bay region, is changing. Workforce experts say the balance of power has shifted from employers to employees.

At the Florida Chamber of Commerce 2023 Economic Summit this month, Steve Hatfield, global future of work leader with Deloitte, told virtual attendees that remote work is here to stay.

Hatfield said 31 percent of the global workforce is now working remotely and 26 percent of them say they would quit if forced to return to the workplace.

Career Source Tampa Bay CEO John Flanagan said that our region is experiencing the same changes, and employers are responding.

"Pre-pandemic, one in every about 30 jobs posted online was a remote opportunity. Post-pandemic, that's 1 in 7," Flanagan said. "That's really changed. You know, about 20 percent, give or take, of all new job postings are remote opportunities."

Hatfield told the Economic Summit that work-life balance is a key focus of Gen Z and millennial workers.

“What's really happening is a fundamental shift in worker sentiment about work/life balance, and where work sits in terms of the level of importance for them,” Hatfield said. “We did a study of Gen Z's and millennials globally, over 11,000 respondents across 120 countries, and the top reasons for choosing an employer for that same population continues to be work/life balance, learning and development and the top reasons for leaving an employer inadequate rewards, mental health, and burnout.”

Flanagan said to get the skilled workers they need, employers need to cast a wider net.

"You know, disconnected youth who may not have graduated high school but aren't connected to the workforce or education, returning citizens from incarceration, people with physical or intellectual disabilities. Employers really have to start attracting or start courting for lack of a better word."

Flanagan said that means employers should be looking for the skills they need rather than looking for things like college degrees.

And, he said, prospective employees should start highlighting skills like critical thinking and customer relations.

I started my journalism career delivering the Toledo Blade newspaper on my bike.