San Diego workers reporting job burnout as demand for employees increases

Masks in the workplace
Posted at 5:51 PM, Jun 09, 2021
and last updated 2021-06-09 20:51:58-04

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) - Worker burnout is building. It’s a trend seen across the United States: companies made cuts at the beginning of the pandemic, so some people lost jobs while others were left having to cover for the lost labor.

“It resulted in longer hours, increased workloads, more stress, fewer vacations,” said Paul Flaharty, District Director for Robert Half in regards to the employees who have been working through the last year.

A study done by Robert Half shows 1 in 4 people forfeited paid time off in 2020, while 1 in 3 plans to take more than three weeks of vacation time this year.

The research shows that in San Diego, 39% of workers are more burned out from their jobs today than a year ago, which is up from the 25% in a similar 2020 poll. However, 35% of San Diego workers will not unplug from work completely while on vacation this summer.

“We’ve found that employee burnout can lead to decreased morale, decreased productivity, certainly the turnover levels increase and that can be extremely costly for a business,” said Flaharty.

Flaharty said now, companies are trying to recover the employees who they let go last year. However, there are more jobs than workers because many employees are either not comfortable returning to work or are continuing to utilize the extra unemployment funds that run through September. This creates a good situation for employees working right now because companies should value the workers they already have as they seek out new workers.

“It is clearly an employees market,” said Manpower Executive Officer Phil Blair.

Blair said people who are feeling burnout should take advantage of the "employee market" by having conversations with employers about how they can fix their current situation.

“If they are feeling overworked and underpaid, do something about it. Don’t just sit back and accept that,” said Blair.

If an employer will not work with an employee to make positive changes, now is a great time to start looking for a new job because of the surplus of jobs out there. Or, for anyone who has been unemployed, now is a great time to try to find a job.

“This is the time I say to get off the couch and boost your career because you’re in the driver's seat,” said Blair.

Both Blair and Flaharty agree that conversation is key for both employers and employees. Employers should create an environment where it’s okay to talk about being exhausted, and employees should feel comfortable going to their employers about any issues they might be having.