Breaking: Job Openings at 7.3 Million

By Robert Half August 6, 2019 at 8:30am

June job openings were at 7.3 million, little changed from the prior month. The number of workers who were hired, quit or laid off was also little changed from May. Here is a summary of key data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics’ just-released Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS):

  • Job openings: 7.3 million
  • People hired: 5.7 million
  • People who left their jobs (total): 5.5 million
  • People who left their jobs (voluntarily quit): 3.4 million
  • People who left their jobs (layoff or involuntary reason): 1.7 million
  • People who left their jobs (retirement or other reason): 345,000 

The hiring market remains strong for those with the right mix of skills. There were 3.4 million people who voluntarily left their positions in June, indicating that many employed professionals feel confident about their ability to find a better job. With more vacant positions than unemployed people in the U.S., it can be a good time to consider new career opportunities. 

If you are leaving your job, it’s important you do so with grace. Think long-term. You can’t afford to burn any bridges and damage your professional reputation. Here are some tips:

  • Give adequate notice. Give your manager some time to prepare for your departure by letting her know you’ve accepted another job opportunity at least two weeks before you leave. Check out our advice on how to write a resignation letter.
  • Be positive. Even if you disliked your job, don’t spend your last days complaining. Try to be upbeat and focus on the things you liked about working at the firm. If you’re asked to do an exit interview, be honest. But also be diplomatic and professional when discussing negative attributes of the position and work environment. While it might feel cathartic in the moment, airing every possible grievance in harsh terms isn’t going to bolster your career. Here are some exit interview questions you might be asked.
  • Be wary of a counteroffer. There are likely good reasons you’ve decided to leave your job. Even if your current employer offers you more money or a promotion to stay, it’s usually best not to accept a counteroffer. The issues that led you to seek employment elsewhere are likely going to resurface again. 
  • Finish strong. Don’t go out with a whimper. Wrap up any projects that you can and offer to train your replacement. Create a detailed overview of where each project stands, your contact’s information and any outstanding issues that need to be addressed. Here are some tips to help you do your best in your last days on the job.

Remember, your final days in a job can leave a lasting impression. By being diplomatic and diligently tying up all loose ends, you’ll end on a positive note. You’ll also be in a good position to maintain valuable connections with colleagues and managers that you’ll likely need for future job recommendations.

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