Because they are in high demand, employees are seeking higher-paying work at greater rates than ever before.
New employees are seemingly no longer willing to settle for $15 per hour. An August study from job-posting firm Indeed found that job searches mentioning $20 per hour pay rates surpassed $15 searches.
“Throughout 2019 and much of 2020, the share of searches on Indeed mentioning ‘$15’ was greater than those mentioning ‘$20’. But that trend reversed in April 2021. Since then, the share of $20-related searches has outpaced searches mentioning $15.
“Moreover, as of August 14, the share of $20 related searches has grown 35.5% year over year,” says Indeed.
“Job seeker searches for ‘$25’ have risen as well. While still smaller than those for $20, the share of $25-related searches has increased 122% year-over-year as of August 14.”
Why it’s important
The increase marks the effects that inflation is having on the country—that $15 per hour is no longer enough for most households to afford living expenses as entrenched inflation and recession fears pervade.
“It’s a sign of how inflation and a labor shortage pushed up wages faster than anyone could’ve imagined a decade ago, when Fight for $15, a union-led push to organize fast-food workers, was founded,” says Axios.
It also marks the fact that job mobility is increasing. Despite a large demand for work with 11.2 million job openings, more workers are refusing to work for lower-paying jobs and are resigning in large numbers to seek better options.
“Job-seekers understand that in the tight market, they’re in the driver’s seat to leverage employers raising their wages, and they’re changing their salary expectations accordingly. The typical job-switcher got a 10% pay bump after changing jobs in the last year,” says CNBC.
“In California, fast-food workers could soon start earning as much as $22 an hour, after a bill meant to improve conditions in the industry passed the state’s senate on Monday. The bill is headed to Governor Gavin Newsom’s desk—but the governor hasn’t said whether he’ll sign it,” says Axios.