COVID-19 and the labor market

FT series analysing how the Covid-19 pandemic has transformed the labour market and changed the way millions of people think about work

Women take hit on jobs as Latin America recovers from the pandemic

At the height of pandemic restrictions in Mexico last year, Lorena Romero’s employer halved her hours — and the single mother of two is still struggling to get her working life back on track.

Romero wants to step up her hours and has looked at various roles — including live-in domestic work positions about two hours from her house. But the need to look after her teenage children, who have not yet returned to school full-time, makes it hard to find suitable opportunities.

“I can’t take that kind of work right now; I need to be close to my kids . …  Seguir leyendo »

Back to work: why French workers are resisting the Covid ‘Big Quit’

Aubérie Zaro left her Paris-based Big Four consultancy job in January determined to take some time off to ponder what she really “wanted to do”. After a nine-month pause from the job market, the 30-year-old started looking for a new position. Much to her surprise, she found one that matched her goals within a month.

“I thought with the pandemic all hiring might be frozen, but it was really fast”, she said.

Zaro’s swift and successful job search is one that thousands of French workers have experienced in recent months. As in most developed countries, they have benefited from generous government support for businesses and a sharp economic recovery, which have helped bring the unemployment rate — those out of work but actively searching for jobs — back to pre-pandemic levels of 8 per cent.…  Seguir leyendo »

The switching generation: US workers quit jobs in record numbers

Lindsay Coleman has quit two jobs this year.

The first, in January, was in sales at the software company where she had worked for almost six years, ever since she graduated from college. She loved her colleagues there but felt that she could not turn down an offer from a competitor for a role she thought might be more enjoyable.

But by October New Yorker Coleman realised that she would rather sell apartments instead of software and after earning her real estate licence, she resigned again to join The Corcoran Group.

“Software sales is a very lucrative career, but I always deep down knew it wasn’t what I loved and didn’t ever know if I would do something about it,” said Coleman, 29.…  Seguir leyendo »

Where did all the workers go?

Mike, a gregarious ex-rugby player who now burns excess energy by putting in miles on a road bike, is not ready to retire. Yet his job in fintech — which he began in April 2020, a week into the UK’s first Covid lockdown — has proved radically different from the one he signed up for.

Working at senior level in business development, he used to enjoy spending days on the road meeting clients. Long stints of wall-to-wall Zoom calls left him stultified yet still buzzing and unable to sleep in the small hours.

“If my children sat at a screen for 10 to 11 hours a day, I’d lock it in a cupboard”, says Mike, who asked that his surname not be used.…  Seguir leyendo »