By Daniel Hunter
The latest figures from Legal & General’s Job Security Index show that confidence in job security among UK workers has seen little improvement over the past three months. Nearly three quarters (74%) of workers say they are confident in their job security, which is only a 1% rise since last quarter, when it was at 73%.
Encouragingly, over two thirds, (67%) of part-time workers said they are confident about their job security, a 2% improvement since last quarter, when the figure was 65%.
However, this is still well below the confidence they expressed in October 2012 when confidence in job security among part-time workers was at its highest at 73%. In turn, over a quarter, (26%) of part-time workers say they are worried about how they will maintain their standard of living over the next three months.
The number of working adults seeking a new job which will give them better job security is at its highest since the Job Security Index first started tracking UK working adults’ views in January 2012**. Almost one in ten, (9%) workers say that they are job hunting for this reason, whereas less than one third, (29%) of workers believe their job to be completely secure and are therefore not looking for a new role. This remains the same as last quarter.
Young workers, those aged 18-24, remain one of the most confident of all age groups; with nearly four fifths (78%) saying they are confident about their job security. However confidence among this age group has dropped 2% since last quarter.
In contrast, those aged 55 and over feel more confident than they did last quarter with nearly three quarters, (74%) saying that they feel confident now, compared to 70% in January. Those that seem to be the most worried about their job security are workers aged between 45 and 54, the sandwich generation, with only 68% saying they feel secure.
“Unfortunately, confidence in job security has still somewhere to go to be back at levels we saw back in October 2012. UK workers were feeling more optimistic about their job security in the run-up to Christmas," Mark Holweger, Director of Legal & General’s general insurance business said.
"However, there are some small but encouraging signs that things maybe improving, particularly for certain groups such as part-time workers who have said that they are more confident about their job security.
"Young workers have particularly found it tough to secure employment according to previous ONS employment stats, so it will be interesting to see if the actual figures due out on Wednesday show that job prospects are improving for this group.”
The latest Job Security Index also asked UK workers whether they are currently worrying about how they would maintain their current standard of living over the next three months, and one fifth of workers, (21%) said that they were worried.
Almost one in ten workers, (8%) said they were working an increased number of paid hours in their current job to generate additional income, compared with three months ago. 22% of the sandwich generation, those aged between 45 and 54, are continuing to work without actively trying to secure a pay rise or promotion.
“With state benefits continuing to reduce, there is much more onus on individuals to take proactive steps to protect themselves," Mark added.
"The on-going squeeze on day to day finances and continuing job insecurity, whether young or old, it’s really important for workers to have a contingency plan in place which could help with regular payments such as rent or bills if their regular source of income were to suddenly stop.”
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