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Uncertainty in job market impacting women, Gen Z in particular: LinkedIn Report

Our Bureau Mumbai | Updated on June 22, 2021

India’s overall workforce confidence has declined after peaking in early March, with a composite score of +54, down 4 points from +58 in March

The aftermath of the second wave of Covid-19 has left Indian professionals, women and Gen Z, in particular, increasingly vulnerable to the economic uncertainty in evolving job market, according to LinkedIn’s latest edition of the Workforce Confidence Index report.

According to the report, working women are twice as likely to be worried about the availability of jobs compared to working men, Furthermore, 30 per cent of Gen Z professionals are concerned due to a lack of jobs.

Dip in confidence

India’s overall workforce confidence has declined after peaking in early March, with a composite score of +54 (down 4 points from +58 in March).

Also read: 12.76 lakh workers added to EPFO net in April: Centre

This dip in confidence is reflected across professionals from creative industries such as Entertainment, Design, and Media and Comms, who expressed being uncertain about the future of their employers, it said. On the other hand, professionals from Software and IT and Hardware & Networking are growing increasingly confident about the future of their organisations as various parts of the country begin to reopen.

“As India slowly begins to come out of the second wave of Covid-19 cases, we see the hiring rate recover from a low of 10 per cent in April to 35 per cent at the end of May. Despite this modest revival, confidence level of working women and young professionals are amongst the lowest in the workforce today,” said Ashutosh Gupta, India Country Manager, LinkedIn.

“Twice as many working women are concerned with job availability compared to working men, and 30 per cent of Gen Z professionals worry due to lack of jobs. Remote jobs can be the ray of hope, to provide the much-needed flexibility and growth in opportunities to help them bounce back into the workforce,” added Gupta.

The second wave ‘shecession’

When it comes to India’s working women, the individual confidence index (ICI) scores of female professionals fell from +57 in March to +49 in early June post the second wave, a 4x decline compared to working men (+58 in March to +56 in June).

“Decoding India’s evident ‘shecession’, findings show that India’s working women are ~2x more likely to be worried about the availability of jobs, their professional network, and time devoted to job seeking, than working men today,” the report said.

This has even impacted the financial stability of working women as 1 in 4 (23 per cent) female professionals are concerned about growing expenses or debt, in contrast with 1 in 10 (13 per cent) working men.

Gen Z woes

The report highlighted that 30 per cent of Gen Z professionals are troubled due to lack of jobs, compared to 18 per cent Baby Boomers.

“The pandemic’s recent peak in India has amplified the importance of work experience and professional connections, as young Indians were found twice (2.5x) as worried as their older cohorts, about the impact of Covid-19 on their careers,” the report said.

In terms of finances, concerns increase as 1 in 4 Gen Z (23 per cent) and millennials (24 per cent) report being more worried about their debt or expenses when compared to just half as many Boomers (13 per cent) in India today.

As per LinkedIn Labour Market Update, LinkedIn platform data suggests that the average time for fresh graduates to find a new job has also increased by 43 per cent (from 2 to 2.8 months) in 2020 compared to pre-Covid-19 times in 2019. But while the conversion time has increased, so have remote opportunities, as LinkedIn platform data further suggests that the proportion of entry-level jobs labelled as ‘remote’ posted between Jan-March 2020 have increased by 9x between 2020 and 2021.

Leaning towards flexibility and work-life balance

PAs India continues to navigate the ongoing health and economic crisis, professionals are prioritising ’self-care.’ While 1 in 2 job-seekers value employee benefits (55 per cent) and salary (53 per cent) more post-Covid-19, an equal number of job-seekers are found prioritizing work-life balance (48 per cent) and location flexibility (50 per cent) when looking for a job today, as per the report.

Also read: More flex in co-working

This growing demand for flexibility comes at a time when remote opportunities continue to grow, t further added. As per the recent Labour Market Update, remote job postings that increased by 35x across 2020, grew further by almost 3x year-on-year as of May 2021.

Additionally, 2 in 5 job seekers prioritised workplace culture (43 per cent), internal movement & promotions (44 per cent), and a visible commitment to diversity & inclusion (42 per cent) from their potential employers.

The LinkedIn Workforce Index is based on the survey responses of 1,891 professionals from May 8 to June 4.

Published on June 22, 2021

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