To find out all about Coronavirus-related unemployment benefits
Author: Steven De Nazareth
As per the April employment situation report, the unemployment rate is the lowest in 50 years at 3.6 percent while nonfarm payroll employment increased by 263,000. The April employment situation report further stated that major job gains were in professional and business services, construction, health care, and social assistance.
Household Survey Data
This is the lowest unemployment rate since 1969. The rate declined by 0.2 percentage point to 3.6 percent in April. Also, there was a decrease of 387,000 unemployed persons and this reduced to 5.8 million overall.
In the major worker groups, the unemployment rates declined:
Adult Men – 3.4 percent
Adult Women – 3.1 percent
Whites – 3.1 percent
Asians – 2.2 percent
Hispanics – 4.2 percent
Teenagers – 13 percent
Blacks – 6.7 percent
The number of job losers and people that completed temporary jobs declined by 186,000 over the month to 2.7 million. While at the same time, the number of people unemployed for less than 5 weeks declined by 222,000 to 1.9 million. Similarly, the long-term unemployed was little changed at 1.2 million in April and accounted for 21.1 percent of the unemployed.
The labor force participation rate was unchanged from a year earlier. It declined by 0.2 percentage point to 62.8 percent in the month of April. Also, the employment-population ratio has remained unchanged at 60.6 percent in April and this has been either 60.6 percent to 60.7 since October 2018.
For economic reasons, there were some people that worked part-time and this changed a little at 4.7 million in April. These were mostly individuals that preferred full-time employment and were working part-time because their hours had been reduced or unable to find full-time work.
With regard to the unemployment situation in April, 1.4 million people were marginally attached to the labor force in April. These individuals were not in the labor force and were looking for work for 12 months. There were 454,000 discouraged workers in April which was about the same as last year. Discouraged workers are people that are not currently looking for work because they feel that there are no jobs available for them. The remaining 963,000 attached to the labor force had not searched for work as they had school attendance and family responsibilities to tend to.
Establishment Survey Data
In the employment situation, the nonfarm payroll employment had increased by 263,000 in April as compared to the monthly gain of 213,000 over the last 12 months. The major job gainers were in professional and business services, construction, health care, and social assistance.
There were 76,000 jobs in the professional and business services category. Administrative and support services increased by 53,000 and 14,000 in computer systems design and related services. In the last 12 months, professional and business services added 535,000 jobs.
Construction employment grew by 33,000 and this saw gains in the nonresidential specialty trade contractors by 22,000 and heavy and civil engineering construction by 10,000. The construction added 256,000 jobs over the past 12 months.
In health care, employment grew by 27,000 and 404,000 over the past 12 months. The ambulatory health care services increased by 17,000, hospitals by 8,000 and community care facilities for the elderly at 7,000. Also, social assistance added 26,000 jobs over the month.
Employment for financial activities continued to trend up by 12,000. The industry has added 110,000 jobs over the last 12 months with almost three-fourths of the growth seen in rental, leasing and real estate.
There was little change in manufacturing for a third month in succession and it increased by 4000 in April. 12 months prior to February, this industry had added 22,000 jobs per month.
Retail employment was down by 12,000 and 9,000 job losses were in merchandise stores. But at this time motor vehicle and parts dealers added 8,000 jobs.
Other major industries that showed little change in April were mining, wholesale trade, transportation and warehousing, information, leisure and hospitality, and government.
The total nonfarm payroll employment was changed from 33,000 to 56,000 for February while March was changed from 196,000 to 189,000. Based on these revisions, employment increased by 16,000 more than what was previously reported.
In March, the total non-farm payroll increased by 196,000 while the unemployment rate remained unchanged at 3.8 percent. The major gainers were in the field of health care and people employed in technical and professional services.
Household Survey Data
While the unemployment rate remains unchanged at 3.8 percent, the number of people unemployed was 6.2 million.
The major work groups include:
Adult Men – 3.6 percent
Adult Women – 3.3 percent
Teenagers – 12.8 percent
Whites – 3.4 percent
Blacks – 6.7 percent
Asians – 3.1 percent
Hispanics – 4.7 percent
1.3 million of the population are jobless for 27 weeks or more and this accounts for 21.1 percent of the unemployed. At 63 percent, the labor force participation rate was little changed over the past 12 months. The employment-population ratio was 60.6 percent in March and has been either 60.6 percent or 60.7 percent since October 2018.
Part time employed people was little changed at 4.5 million in March. These individuals would have preferred full-time employment were working part time because their hours were reduced or there were no more full-time jobs.
1.4 million people were attached to the labor force which is slightly different from a year earlier. These individuals were not part of the labor force, were ready to work and have looked for jobs for the last 12 months.
In March, there were 412,000 discouraged workers in March which remained unchanged from a year earlier. Discouraged workers are people that are not looking for work as they believe that there are no jobs in the market for them. While the remaining 944,000 people marginally attached to the labor force had not searched for work for reasons like family responsibilities and school attendance.
Establishment Survey Data
As discussed earlier, the total non-farm payroll employment increased by 196,000 in March. It saw notable gains in health care and in technical and professional services. The employment growth averaged 180,000 per month during the first quarter of 2019 as compared to 223,000 per month in 2018.
The Health Care industry added 49,000 jobs in March and 398,000 over the last 12 months. In March, the employment in ambulatory health care services increased by 27,000, hospitals by 14,000 and nursing and residential care facilities by 9,000.
Technical and professional employment grew by 34,000 in the month of March and 311,000 over the past 12 months. At the same time, computer systems design and related services added 12,000 jobs. While architectural and engineering jobs increased by 6,000 and technical and management jobs increased by 6,000.
The employment in drinking places and food services had an upward trend of 27,000 with an average monthly again over 12 months. Construction employment showed little change in March to 16,000 but increased by 246,000 over the past 12 months.
Manufacturing employment decreased by 6,000 in March following an increase of 1,000 in February. In the 12 months prior to February, manufacturing had added an average of 22,000 jobs every month. But in the motor vehicle and parts industry, it declined by 6,000 in March.
There are major industries which include mining, retail and wholesale trade, warehousing, transportation, financial activities, government and information sectors which showed a small change over the month.
The average workweek for employees on private non-farm payrolls increased by 0.1 hour to 34.5 hours in March. The manufacturing workweek remained unchanged at 40.7 hours and the production and non supervisory employees increased by 0.1 hour to 33.7 hours.
In the month of March, the average hourly earnings on private non-farm payrolls rose by 4 cents to $27.7 and increased 3.2 percent in the last 12 months. Similarly, the average hourly earnings increased by 3.2 percent and the average earnings of the private sector production and non supervisory employees increased by 6 cents to $23.24 in March.
The total change in non-farm payroll employment from January was revised up from 311,000 to 312,000 and the change in February was revised from 20,000 to 33,000. Based on these revisions, employment gains in January and February were 14,000 more. After revisions, job gains average 180,000 per month over the last 3 months.
The total nonfarm payroll employment in February changed a little by 20,000 as compared to January. The unemployment rate has decreased to 3.8 percent. The main reason for improvement in unemployment rate is based on professional and business services, wholesale trade, health care that saw a trend up while construction employment decreased.
Household Survey Data
The overall unemployment rate declined by 0.2 percentage point to 3.8 percent in February while number of unemployed people decreased by 300,000 to 6.2 million. Those that lost their jobs and completed temporary jobs declined by 225,000. The decline could be based on the return of federal workers to work that were furloughed in January due to the partial government shutdown.
Looking at the unemployment of various groups, you can get an understanding of unemployment situation based on how it has fared in the same month in the previous year.
Unemployment Rate (February 2019)
Unemployment Rate (February 2018)
People that were long-term unemployed remained unchanged at 1.3 million and accounted for 20.4 percent of the total unemployed. The labor force participation has changed a little over a year with a rate at 63.2 percent. Similarly, the employment-population ratio was at 60.7 percent. This remained unchanged over the month as it was up by 0.3 percentage points over last year.
Based on economic reasons, the number of people employed part time decreased by 837,000 to 4.3 million in February. This decline follows a sharp increase in January which was a result of the federal government shutdown.
Also in February, 1.4 million people were marginally attached to the labor force and this decreased by 178,000 since the previous year. These individuals were not part of the labor force, were available to work and were actively looking for a job in the past 12 months. Another group were the 428,000 discouraged workers in February which changed very slightly from the previous year. While the remaining 1 million people marginally attached to the labor force had not searched for work due to reasons like family responsibilities and school attendance.
Establishment Survey Data
While the total nonfarm payroll employment remained little changed of 20,000 after increasing by 311,000 in January. Similarly, in 2018 it average at 223,000 per month. But in February the main sources of employment were in professional and business services, wholesale trade and health care. But at the same time employment of construction declined.
The professional and business services continued to edge up at 42,000 with its average monthly gain of 12 months. Health care added 21,000 jobs with over 361,000 jobs added over the year. Even employment in the ambulatory health care services increased by 16,000.
The wholesale trade employment has an upward trend of 11,000. The industry added 95,000 jobs over the year which is largely among the durable goods wholesalers.
But in February, construction employment declined by 31,000 which was due to a partial offset of an increase of 53,000 jobs in January. The main employment in construction declined in heavy and civil engineering construction was 13,000. But over the year, construction added 223,000 jobs. Similarly, manufacturing employment changed little in February to 4,000 after an increase of 22,000 per month.
The month of February saw that the employment in the leisure and hospitality industry remained unchanged after it posted job gains of 89,000 and 65,000 in January and December. Over the year, it has added 410,000 jobs. There was little or no change in major industries like retail trade, mining, transportation, warehousing, financial activities and government.
The change in total nonfarm payroll employment was revised from 222,000 to 227,000 and saw a change in January from 304,000 to 311,000. Based on these revisions, employment gains in both December and January were 12,000 more than it was reported earlier. After the revisions, the job gains now average at 186,000 per month in the last 3 months
The 1099 form is used to record income that you have received as an independent contractor or through other sources of income. This would mean that if you are a freelancer then you will receive 1099 forms from your clients. The IRS requires businesses to issue this form if contractors are paid at least $600 in the same year.
Based on how you receive your income, there are a few different 1099 forms that will need to submit. The 1099-K form is used for payments via settlements entities like PayPal that record business transactions for that particular year. Finally, you should track the sum total of your 1099 forms and calculate the total income and adjusted gross income (AGI).
What is a 1099?
The 1099 form is referred to as the Information Filing Form. Usually, there are types of 1099 forms that are used to report tax dividends, the sale of personal property and debts. But the one that is most frequently used is the Form 1099-MISC used by independent contractors and business owners.
When is the Deadline for 1099?
You should ensure that you file form 1099-MISC with the IRS every year by January 31. On the other hand, Form 1099-K should be filed with the IRS by February 28 for mail filing and by March 31 if you are submitting it in the electronic form.
How to Go About Filing 1099 Form?
When it comes to compiling the 1099 form, you should ensure that you include Copy A of 1099-MISC and Copy A of the 1099-K when you share the 1099 form with the IRS. Also, ensure that you submit Form 1096 should be filed as well. This helps the IRS check the amount you paid out in total. These IRS forms are scanned to electronically read these forms.
When it comes to the electronic filing, you need to use a special formatting software which is usually worked on by developers. Anyone that files online should apply to the IRS to let them know that you are filing electronically. Moreover, the IRS prefers this method and there are major benefits like:
Filing for State and Federal together for 34 states
No 1096 form needed
Submission of 1099s in Bulk
Form confirmation of it being received and processed.
Preparing the 1099 Forms
The following seven steps will help you prepare your 1099 forms and adhere to the IRS guidelines:
1. Reviewing Your Work
You should ensure that you start the 1099 form process by filling in the correct information of the contractors. Ensure that you have filled out the Form W-9 for each contractor. This would include information like their name, address, and their Social Security Number (SSN) or Employer Identification Number (EIN).
As a good practice, you should check with each contractor to see if any information has changed prior to when you started the 1099 filing process. Check whether all contractors have provided the W-9 forms and whether they have omitted specific information. Based on this, you can withhold 28% of the contractor’s pay and send this directly to the IRS.
2. Getting Your 1099s in Order
When it comes to the 1099s, you should ensure that you have accurate information to work with. Ensure that you do not use a downloaded Form 1099-MISC or a sample, as these forms will be read by the IRS scanner when it processes these forms.
Order these forms directly from the IRS from their website or call 1-800-TAX-FORM (1-800-829-3676). Alternatively, you can get these forms at office-supply stores or file it online. You should know that you can buy pre-printed 1099 forms that let you print all of the information to the corresponding sections of the 1099 form.
Use the IRS Form 1099-MISC to determine the incomes for all non-employee compensation. This is what independent contractors use file and calculate their taxes. Ensure that all contractors that you have paid more than $600 in the same year fill in the Form 1099-MISC. This form is to be filled in by contractors that work for partnerships and LLCs throughout the year.
When it comes to the paper filings, Form 1096 is attached along with the 1099 filing, wherein you report the total amount of the 1099 payments that you have filed. This ensures that the IRS has the cumulative forms add up to how much is paid out in total as reported in the 1096 form.
If you get a Form 1099-G from the government agency then you are required to report this information when filing your tax return. Usually, the 1099-G is used to report unemployment compensation or state or local income tax refunds that you have received in the same year.
3. Filling Out Forms
Once you have the details and information of your contractors and the forms, you then need to put pen to paper and fill them out. You can begin with entering the Federal Tax ID number which is the SSN or EIN and then add the contact information.
The 1099 form should include the total amount of money paid to the contractor which is entered in the title Non-employee compensation. In case, you had withheld any pay from the contractor then you need to fill in details in relation to federal or state income tax which was withheld.
Finally, you need to enter the contact information forms and repeat this for each contractor that you have worked with.
4. Sending Out the Forms
You should then proceed to send the forms to the IRS. Either, you should mail or hand each of 1099 Copy B to the contractor before February 1. If you fail to meet this deadline then there would be an IRS penalty fee that would be levied on you.
5. Mailing Form 1096 to the IRS
IRS Form 1096 sums up the total of your returns which would be the 1099s. In case you file through snail mail then you must mail Form 1096 and Copy A of each Form 1099 to the IRS before February 29. But, if you are filing electronically, then you can send it out by March 31.
6. Keeping Record of Your Filing
Always keep a Copy C for your own records in case there are questions regarding the information that is sent to the IRS.
What’s the IRS Penalty for Missing the Deadline?
If you miss the deadline, then the penalty would range from $30 to $100 based on the form. You will be fined a maximum of $500,000 per year. In case a company completely disregards the need to showcase correct statements, then it could be fined $250 per form with no maximum limit.
What’s the Difference Between a 1099 and a W-2 Tax Form?
Although the W-2 and Form 1099 are both used to report income that you earned from sources throughout the year. They are issued under different circumstances and requires different approaches when it comes to tax planning.
So, what is a W-2 Form?
A W-2 Form is usually given to you if you are an employee. Here, the IRS requires you to record your salary and tax information and file it with a W-2 form. This form shows you how much money you have earned from the employer during the year and you can thus calculate your AGI which includes your Federal and State taxes.
Here you can determine how 1099 forms differ from W-2 forms:
Here taxes are not usually withheld by the payer.
If you are a freelancer, then you are required to estimate your taxes and pay self-employment tax.
Here, you would not be withholding taxes on payments by doing tax payments quarterly based on your estimated annual tax liability.
The 1099 form will not show the taxes that you have paid to the government but the income you get from each client.
In January, the total nonfarm payroll employment increased by 304,000 as compared to December which had an increase of 312,000 jobs. The unemployment rate has increased from 3.7 percent to 4 percent and this could be attributed to the Shutdown which lasted for 35 days from December 22, 2018, until January 25, 2019.
Household Survey Data
There has been a 0.3 percent increase in the unemployment rate and the number of people unemployed now stands at 6.5 million. Those that were impacted due to the partial federal government shutdown were reported as being on temporary layoff which has increased by 175,000. This figure includes those that were furloughed federal employees that were classified as unemployed during the temporary layoff.
There was a little change in the number of long-term unemployed at 1.3 million and this accounted for 19.3 percent of unemployed individuals. The labor force participation rate was at 63.2 percent and the employment to population ratio is at 60.7 percent. These measures are up 0.5 percent over the year. Another important mention is that the number of people employed part-time has increased by one-half million to 5.1 million in January. Also, in January, 1.6 million people were marginally attached to the labor force which was unchanged from a year earlier. There were 426,000 discouraged workers in January and the remaining 1.2 million people were marginally attached to the labor force had not searched for work because of school attendance and family responsibilities.
Establishment Survey Data Total
The nonfarm payroll employment increased by 304,000 in January as compared to the average monthly gain of 223,000 in 2018. While in January, the employment grew in several industries like warehousing, transportation, construction, health care, and hospitality. There are no discernible impacts of the partial federal government shutdown for estimates based on earnings, hours or employment.
The employment rose in the hospitality and leisure by 74,000 while the job gains were mostly from food services and drinking places (37,000) and amusements, recreation and gambling which increased by 32000. Over the past year, leisure and hospitality alone added 410,000 jobs.
Another major contributor to job gains is through the special trade contractors which increased in both nonresidential (19,000) and residential components (15,000). Employment rose in the heavy and civil engineering construction by 10,000 and residential building by 9,000. In the past 12 months, 338,000 jobs were added in the construction sector.
In the health care industry, employment increased by 42,000 while the largest contributors were ambulatory health care services (22,000) and hospitals (19,000). Health care added 368,000 jobs over the past year and over the month, employment in transportation and warehousing rose by 27,000. Retail trade employment edged up by 21,000 while general merchandise stores lost 12,000 jobs.
The mining industry has added 64,000 jobs over the year as the employment increased by 7,000 in January. Professional and business services continue to trend up over the month and it has increased by 546,000 in the last 12 months. Manufacturing has seen an uptrend with 261,000 jobs being added over the year. There has been an increase of 20,000 jobs in durable goods while there is a decline of 7,000 in non-durable goods.
When it comes to employment in the Federal government, it has remained unchanged in January with an increase in 1,000 jobs. Federal employees on furlough during the partial government shutdown were counted as employed because they worked or received pay for the period that included 12th of the month.
The total nonfarm payroll employment for November was revised from 176,000 to 196,000 and the change for December was revised from 312,000 to 222,000. Based on these revisions, the employment gains in November and December combined were 70,000 more. This makes the job gains an average of 241,000 per month over the past three months.
This suggests that though there has been an increase in the number of jobs in several industries, the main job gainers in the industry were leisure and hospitality, construction, health care, and transportation and warehousing.
Here’s 5 quick steps to file your unemployment claim. Hope this Infographic helps you determine your UI Benefits and makes the process easier to file your claim.
The US government has been in partial shutdown since December 22, 2018, as President Trump continues to demand more than $5 billion for the border wall between US and Mexico. At this time, since the Democrats control the House, they continue to suggest that they won’t agree to any new money for the wall. Though Trump would not declare a state of national emergency, the White House has already started the groundwork in the event that a major problem arises. Till date, this is the longest shutdown in the history of America.
What Does This Shutdown Mean?
This partial government shutdown would lead to a serious impact on the 800,000 federal employees including the essential jobs that are required to work without pay. This would suggest that most government offices and national monuments would not be functional. As of now due to the US government shutdown, it is difficult to predict layoffs or companies closing down or seeing companies slash up to one-third of its staff due to mergers and acquisitions.
Why the Shutdown?
President Trump stated that he would not relent till the Democrats come to an understand and would go to the extent of using even Disaster Relief Funds to ensure that he has enough financial backing to complete the Wall. Owing to this, President Trump suggested that he would even militarize the border and improve the border security to safeguard the American people.
….Border is eventually going to be militarized and defended or the United States, as we have known it, is going to cease to exist…And Americans will not go gentle into that good night. Patrick Buchanan. The great people of our Country demand proper Border Security NOW!
Currently, the Federal Government gets its funding from the annual budget appropriations that is governed by the Congress. While the majority of the government has funding in place since the budget was initiated on October 1, 2018, there are still agencies that are operating on temporary extensions which expired at midnight on December 21, 2018.
Workers are in a fix as funding was not enacted for those agencies during the shutdown. This leaves several employees working for those agencies that have stayed on the job even with furloughs.
In both cases, these employees will remain unpaid until the spending authority is restored. Those that remain at work are called Excepted while those that are furloughed are called Non-excepted. In this period individual agencies would help make decisions in what the government calls Contingency Plans.
The Fake News Media keeps saying we haven’t built any NEW WALL. Below is a section just completed on the Border. Anti-climbing feature included. Very high, strong and beautiful! Also, many miles already renovated and in service! pic.twitter.com/UAAGXl5Byr
The best way to prepare for this kind of crisis is to have a Financial Fire Drill (FFD) in place. This FFD is a focused look at essential expenses and how you would be able to cover them during a no-work period. This includes a list of resources and the answer to all the what-ifs. This is where you should prepare yourself on how to answer an interview.
How Much Should You Save to Be in the Clear?
When you come to think about it, you should try to be financially secure to ensure that when push comes to shove, you have enough resources for you and your family. This actually is quite liberating as you can learn to get by on $1,000 a month till things get better.
You should try to develop a habit of saving and if you have, then your healthy emergency fund can be used for an occasion like this one. While it is suggested that you save for three to six months’ worth of expenses, it would be advisable to save for a year’s worth. Though in theory, it could be difficult, it can be made possible.
Though the main point would be to save on the emergency fund and spend it. There are cases of emergencies where you cannot be fully covered. Also, if it takes more than three months to find a new job or recover from a health issue then you still have to pay the bills and this emergency fund would come in handy.
Similarly, you should learn to perform better at work and learn new skills while on the job to ensure that you are up to date with the current state of affairs.
Claim Your Unemployment Benefits
If you are among the 800,000 federal employees or among the many that have lost their job or have furloughed your work then you can apply for unemployment benefits.
Secondly, submit the Notification of Personnel Action (SFSO) or a Notice to Federal Employee About Unemployment Insurance (SF8).
Thirdly, as furloughed federal employees, you should upload past check stubs to the application to expedite the process. Though furloughed federal employees are not required to seek employment to receive benefits, they would be expected to reach an agreement with Congress to back pay once the shutdown has ended.
Use our Resources and Tools to Your Benefit
If you are in a tight spot and need help to find employment then you should take a look at some of our resources in order to ensure that you are well on your way. You also need to figure out how you canget hired after a career break, we have the right resources to help you on your way.
Don’t forget to use our host of tools like the Base Period Calculator, Benefits Calculator, and the Eligibility Calculator to help determine your benefits amount that you should receive. This way you can figure out what your base period is, determine the benefits that you are due and whether you are officially eligible to claim your benefits.
With the Base Period Calculator, you can determine what your base period which is the months prior to losing your job. These are the usually the first four of the last five completed calendar quarters prior to the effective date of the claim/unemployment.
Similarly, you can use the Benefits Calculator to determine what is the amount of benefits that you are due based on your base period.
But before you determine your benefits, you should check out the Eligibility Calculator to know whether you are eligible for benefits and if you are actively searching for a job.
If you have any questions about how to use these tools or need any information about how to get your benefits then you can reach out to us in the comments section below. Don’t feel shy, we’re all ears!
The American unemployment rate dropped to 3.7% in October. This is the lowest level since 1969 and this translates to the lowest unemployment in half a century. Though this is great for job-seekers, it’s tough in a tight labor market for employers. This would mean that they would have to improve perks, policies, and pay to attract the best talent.
This presents employers with a need to get creative. This means that they have to make the right tweaks to ensure that new employees stay happy. This could include remote work options to diverse compensation plans. Employers will have to tailor-make employment packages to match their employees.
Employers have no choice but to follow the path that successful businesses use to stay competitive in tight labor markets, that is if they want to hire the best resources. They do not look at it as an obstacle but rather an opportunity to demonstrate their companies’ merits and entice soon-to-be employees.
Perks Are out of Fashion
While Startup cultures have fun fringe benefits like ping-pong tables, free pizza, and a beer tap, you should consider if it’s worth it at all. Surely, you should wonder if employees would choose to spend a Friday socializing and snacking. It turns out that employees would leave their current job for a competitor if it offered better flexibility and money, and not perks.
Not all adult workers enjoy arcade games or a gymnasium, some would rather leave early to pick up their kids and take longer vacations. This means that you should create strategies that would attract talented candidates to join your company.
It implies that this job market puts the power in the hands of the worker and businesses cannot simply dish out perks. To attract high-quality employees, you should be practical, provide competitive benefits with a long-term appeal. Here are 6 methods to attract the best of talent in a tight market.
1. Help Towards Student Debt and Housing
The student loan debt crisis is bad and getting worse. College graduates are finding jobs, but their wages aren’t going up. Those in the workforce are making payments late and falling into delinquency. This issue does not stop with just students as people older than 60 also have student loans and this has quadrupled over the last 10 years.
This terrible cycle can be broken if companies offer student loan support in addition to regular salary. There are providers of the 401(k) programs that offer employers student loan assistance. It’s a given that student loan assistance will help in a long way. Also in addition to this, you can consider offering a mortgage assistance program for housing. The best part is not only will employees enjoy a fast track way to homeownership, but it will also make them stay with the company longer.
2. Forward-thinking Travel Policies
It is found that 59% of candidates consider travel policies when they choose an employer. They take this into account more than just book a flight. The movement to make employee comfort a priority in business travel plans is what 79% of business travelers regard and this affects job satisfaction.
This is important for smart employers as they do not cram employees in the cheapest non-chain hotel closest to the airport. This means that they take care of the small things like storing and shipping business clothing. In a way, this will better the travel experience and make it go smoothly. Businesses should allow traveling employees to earn loyalty perks and points from hotels and airlines for personal redemption. Though these are small courtesies, it will go a long way in making a big difference to the workers.
3. Preparation Help for Retirement
Employees would feel more confident that there would be retirement savings to make it to retirement. It was found that 42% believed that they would need to use money from retirement for other expenses.
Employers should work with retirement plan providers and financial service companies to provide employees with resources and tools to plan for the future no matter what their salary grade is.
Through retirement literacy and investment-education options, enterprises can help workers make the most of their paychecks. You should not put the resources out there but let employees figure it out themselves. Get financial advisors to come to talk to employees every few months about their options.
Also, employers can invest in the workers’ futures and they will more likely to spend that future with the company that helped them. Even if employers find it hard to offer a 401(k) match, employees will still appreciate the savings plan.
Even though you introduce ping-pong tables and free alcohol, it’s still not what employees want. They are more interested in stability and flexibility than entertainment. Use practical benefits to attract top talent and retain the best workers.
4. Use Your Own Workforce
You can get the help of your workforce to find new talent. This can be in the form of a referral program. There are several organizations that have referral programs that use incentives. But this can work without incentives too. This is a great way to reach out to an audience which would be otherwise hard to connect with using the regular channels.
5. Be Critical, Not Picky
These requirements should be something that is actually needed. This means that you should be looking for specific skill sets and measure for those skill sets. You should understand the essential requirements of your position. So you should determine if the candidate needs a high school degree and if they need problem-solving abilities. You should look for basic competency model and assessing candidates for these skills. If you are removing candidates based on criteria that is not essential as compared to those skills that are really needed, then you’re missing out on the picture.
6. Be Efficient
You should be efficient when it comes to hiring. This means that you should have a cut off time to have a hire. Reduce time by using automated assessment as the first step of the application process. Then assess the candidates that meet the requirement and screen out the rest and have the right number of candidates to schedule interviews. You can streamline the process and weed out the individuals through an assessment and this frees out your interviewers to focus on the right people to do the job.
Employing Talent in a Tight Market Can Be Difficult
With the job climate skewing towards the perfect storm, there are bound to be problems. This would mean that there are unemployment, high job growth and skill gaps in the workforce. These strategies should be used across different industries to make them more efficient and effectively find, hire and retain quality candidates. This will make your organization succeed in a tight labor market. The biggest part of this problem is due to the tight market and growth in the manufacturing sector in the U.S. When you start to look at the impact, you will understand that this hampers skills and creates a skill gap which makes it more difficult for talent to find jobs. So, how do we find the right individuals to meet our needs and those that have the right knowledge, skills, and abilities? This means that an organization has to rethink how they attract, hire and retain talent. Read more articles that are beneficial to employers.
The drop in soybean exports and the record high increase in imports of consumer goods has created a US trade deficit which is at a 10-year high. This would mean that the Trump administration’s tariff-related measures to reduce the trade gap have been ineffective.
New data suggests that private employers hired fewer workers than expected in November and this points to the moderation in the pace of the job growth. This was reinforced by yet another report that showed a decline in the number of Americans filing claims for unemployment benefits.
The report maintains that weak housing and business spending on equipment data signals a slowdown in economic growth. There have been concerns over the health of the economy that has upset the financial markets in the last few days.
Increase in Trade Deficit
Also, the Commerce Department suggested that the trade deficit has increased by 1.7% to $55.5 billion, the highest its ever been since October 2008. This trade gap has widened for 5 straight months. Revised data show that there is a deficit rising to $54.6 billion instead of the previously reported $54 billion.
Similarly, the politically sensitive goods trade deficit with China has surged 7.1% to record $43.1 billion in October. There is a bitter trade war which is brewing between the United States and China. There are imposed tariffs on $250 billion worth of Chinese imports to force concession on the list of demands that would change the terms of trade between the two countries.
Sino-American Trade War
China has now created new import tariffs on US goods in response. President Trump accuses Beijing of not playing fairly on trade. Additionally, to the Chinese goods, Washington was slapped with tariffs on steel and aluminum imports into the United States. While President Trump and President Xi Jinping agreed to hold off on imposing more tariffs for 90 days while they negotiate a deal to end this trade dispute.
After the arrest of Meng Wanzhou, CFO of Huawei Technologies and the daughter of its founder, this truce seems to be in jeopardy.
The overall trade deficit is forecast to rise to $55 billion in October. When it is adjusted for inflation, the good trade deficit was increased to $87.9 billion in October from $87.2 billion in September. This so-called real trade deficit above the average for the third quarter.
Trade, Stocks, and Exports
Trade subtracted 1.91 percentage points from GDP growth in the July-September quarter. Growth estimates for the fourth quarter are at 2.8% annualized rate. But owing to this, the economy still grew at a 3.5% pace in the third quarter.
But US stocks are trading sharply after Wanzhou’s arrest which has sparked fears between the Sino-US tensions. Also, the prices of the US Treasuries were trading higher while the dollar was weaker against several other currencies. Also, in October, exports of goods and services slipped by 0.1% to $211 billion. China has targeted the Soybean exports in the trade dispute and this has been dropping for the last several months and fell $0.8 billion. Exports of civilian aircraft and engines also fell.
Additionally, exports of petroleum and consumer goods were the highest on record. A strong dollar is probably restraining the overall export growth.
Imports Reach a Record High
With the trade deficit reaching an all-time high, this would mean that imports would have sky-rocketed. Imports of goods and services rose by 0.2 percent to $266.5 billion which is an all-time high. Consumer goods imports increased by $2 billion to a record high of $57.4 billion and were boosted by a $1.5 billion increase in imports of pharmaceutical preparations.
Another item that reached its highest record is motor vehicles as were other imports of goods. Imports are driven by high domestic demand as well as the strong dollar which is making the prices of imported goods cheaper and this offsets the impact of the tariffs.
At the same time, the ADP National Employment Report showed private payrolls rose by 179,000 jobs in November after the downwardly revised increase of 225,000 in October.
The forecasts show that private payrolls advanced 195,000 last month following a previously reported 227,000 increase in October.
This ADP report which was jointly developed with the help of Moody’s Analytics published ahead of the government’s more comprehensive employment report for November which is scheduled for release on Friday.
Nonfarm payrolls are likely increased by 200,000 in November after surging by 250,000 in October. The unemployment rate is forecast holding steady at half a century low of 3.7%.
Though the ADP report is a record that predicts the private payrolls component of the government’s employment report, job growth looks like its slowing. The main reason for this is due to the shortage of qualified workers.
The Decline in Hiring and Claims
In its third report, the Labor Department expressed that the initial claims for the state unemployment benefits dropped 4,000 to seasonally adjusted 231,000 for the week ended Dec. 1. Even though claims have fallen to 225,000 in the latest week, claims have risen for three straight weeks touching an eight-month high of 235,000 during the week ending November 24.
This is a reason to believe that the labor market has reached its peak. While job layoffs have increased, there is an uncertainty over facing tariffs and the stock market turbulence may have to be dented confidence as well, for companies that are trimming their staff.
The fourth report by the Institute for Supply Management (ISM) expressed that its non-manufacturing activity index rose 0.4 points to a reading last month of 60.7. Any reading above 50 indicates expansion in the sector which accounts for more than two-thirds of activity in the US economy.
But this time around, the ISM’s employment measure fell 1.3 points last month with employers in the construction industry reporting difficulties finding workers due to lack of qualified talent. Only time will tell if job growth would be triggered by policy-making and the change in trend in the job market.
When it comes to improving on a personal and professional development front, we tend to take a step back when it comes to self-improvement. Normally, we would sit back and wait for the performance review to look at areas of improvement. This would include improving your skill set, setting personal benchmarks and reviewing them. Also, learning leads to a better quality of life improves confidence and personal development. It also influences our lives in a positive way. You should know that improvement comes from within and you need to take control of that.
Goals That Will Help You Execute Work Better
These are 27 goals that you should take control of to improve your reputation and performance at work, reach new skill levels and professional development:
1) Organize & Prioritize
The first thing that you should do is create a daily schedule and follow it. You should identify the top projects that you need to complete. Create a task list that is manageable, has a sense of purpose and adds value.
2) Stop Multitasking
Ensure that you stop multitasking on several projects at once. This is because in reality the quality of work is compromised and it lowers IQ and EQ, slows you down and increases stress which in turn creates a lot of mistakes. You should then look to unitask instead and make the most of your time.
3) Discover Your Boss’s Style
Think that you are the boss for one moment. The most important thing to do is to build an effective strategy which means that you should empathize and discover your boss’s style. This will help you imagine what they are looking for in an employee. You should know what it is dealing with employees and your subordinates. You can ask your boss a series of question that will help you get to know them and how to set an agenda based on how to manage your boss. The main thing is to understand your boss’s style and orientation and to stay one step ahead always.
4) Avoid Distractions
You should know that focus is a fundamental quality of productive people. So the best thing to do is ensure that you focus on a single task at hand. In time, you should practice staying focused and strive to complete one task and moving to the next.
5) Manage Interruptions
It can be easy to minimize or forget the number of times that you are interrupted in a day. You never know where interruptions could come from. This could come from all directions like co-workers, bosses, and family. The best way to manage interruptions is to keep a stack of post-it notes and index cards nearby. Write on top of each one and write down a person’s name of people that might interrupt you during the day. Next time, they ask you for something, you should also talk to them about points on things that need to be addressed. Just think of the amount of time that you would save by doing three to four things at once rather than doing this three or four times a day for each item.
6) Relationship Building
Try to create a strong relationship with colleagues that are outside to your immediate area of responsibility. One of the books that stress on this is the best selling Getting More: How To Negotiate to Achieve Your Goals in the Real World, Wharton Business School professor Stuart Diamond notes that “companies, even small ones, can be very political places.” He suggests that allying with people will help you including employees that have been there for a long time. You might have overlooked others especially those that work in HR, staffers and the IT department.
7) Be a Great Finisher
There are many of us that are great starters but not finishers. There is always some reason that we fall short. You should think about how many times that you started something new. This would mean a project, a New Year’s Resolution and reflect on it to demonstrate your accomplishments and contributions.
8) Start Early
To be as effective as possible, you should start your day early. This means that if you arrive 15 minutes before you usually do, then you should get an early start and be a step ahead with the day’s tasks. Also, you should reward yourself later with maybe a longer lunch break or a departure for a home that comes earlier than the stipulated time.
9) Set Milestones
When it comes to completing a big project, it could be quite overwhelming. This should not stop you from taking time to celebrate small achievements. You should break large projects into blocks of mini-tasks and create individual success metrics. This is great to keep you on a high morale and improve your energy levels. After which, you should review your progress and reward yourself.
10) Wear the Bosses Shoes
Think of stepping into the boss’s shoes. Look at the big picture and look at the goals from their perspective. The best thing to do is to make effective strategies that will allow you to discover or empathize their aspirations. Ask yourself questions like “What are they looking for in an employee?”, “What skills should I know?” or “What are the qualities needed to be successful in your position?”
11) Get a Mentor/Be a Mentor
You can enhance and grow your skills by being a mentor. As a mentor, you can offer a new insight, vision, and perspective. You should work with a mentor and stretch your thinking and supply with a stream of self-development ideas based on talent and skills. You should not forget to gain experience by mentoring someone else and facilitate your own professional growth that will help you with your position and make you an asset to your firm.
12) Simply Listen
Pay attention to listening as it is important to effective communication. You should spend time thinking about how to listen without interrupting others. If you have matured your listening skills then you would have increased your productivity with lesser mistakes, higher client satisfaction rates, and innovation.
13) Aim for Clarity
You should look for clarity and with clarity, it improves confidence. You should always make it a point to ask questions when you are not 100 percent sure of your responsibilities. Then you should schedule time quarterly to re-evaluate goals, review if your responsibilities have fulfilled these goals and how to better partner with team members to reach your goals.
Another important tool that you should add to your skill set is research. You should look at not wasting other people’s time and doing your homework before taking on any new task. This will make you better prepared to meet the present strategies that will help you reach and accomplish each objective.
15) Write a Letter to Your Future Self
Ask yourself, “Where would you see yourself in 1, 3 and 5 years time? What would be the same? What would be different? Also, write a letter to yourself and work extremely and constantly become that person.
16) Identify Your Blind Spots
Look for blind spots that you are unaware of especially about ourselves and this could cause good intentions that are usually perceived in a negative light. Usually, if you are not careful then you would tend to ignore this. You should look at yourself honestly and ask for feedback from others and be willing to make changes. Then you should reach out to your peers to ask how you are perceived and discover behaviors. These behaviors could either hinder or strengthen your influence and you should be aware of this. You should view this feedback as an asset instead of a judgment and then you should realign your reputation to the ideal person that you should be.
17) Simplify Something
You should look at simplifying things, this is because you should make things less messy and less complicated. You should find ways for each week to simplify or automate a difficult system or process. This could include a messy office, checking emails and doing daily tasks. This could help you improve efficiency and keep things simple.
18) Ask Questions
You should constantly push yourself to the edge for self-improvement. Keep asking yourself if there is a more effective way to achieve the same results. Determine if you are working as efficiently as possible. This can be done by brainstorming. You should always believe that things should be improved.
19) Know Your Competition
Learn about your competition and observe them keenly. You need to identify if what they are doing is right and you should use it as a learning opportunity. After which, you should ensure that you should implement something new at the firm.
20) Acknowledge Others
When it comes to work, it’s all about teamwork. You should learn to help others, give credit wherever its due and be grateful. You will be surprised at how your encouragement and motivation would be a simple way to make the team feel wholesome. A simple “Great Job!” would help the team rise and grow together.
You should read on personal development or articles based on your industry every day. Start with reading a journal and then start recording notes. Then you should identify what you have learned and look at how you can apply your findings in your work and personal space. After which, you should share this information with others to establish expertise.
22) Give Yourself Down Time
There’s nothing like a good vacation for professional development. Otherwise, you will have a lot of stress and in time there could be a burn out that increases and productivity decreases. You need to schedule time away from work to refill and rejuvenate yourself for a healthy work-life balance.
23) Practice Humility
The best thing you should practice is humility and not self-promotion. You should encourage team members and have a high respect for their unique skill sets and important contributions. Another important driver is passion. If you love what you do then you will put your best work forward and perform at your best. These values will be reflected and respected in your personal and professional life based on its true meaning and how you go about it.
24) Eat Healthy Foods
You should consume healthy food throughout the day to avoid energy crashes and for your brain to be fueled properly. Food is imperative for boosting brain power and creating impact and productivity. Junk food only affects your weight. It causes decreased productivity and energy crashes.
25) Get Moving!
You should exercise as its important for your mind and body. Exercising is known to reduce stress hormones and increasing growth factors in the brain are necessary for neuronal connections. It’s better to work out in the morning as its difficult to motivate yourself after a really long day. However, the most important thing is to be consistent.
26) Delegate like a Boss
Ever wonder if it’s possible to complete all the work on your plate? This is why you should delegate. You should be willing to outsource some low-value tasks. You can connect with online services that will help get tedious tasks done.
27) Treat Yourself to Motivate Yourself
You should look at making effective ways to manage your habits and your productivity. You need to train your brain to focus on goal-oriented tasks. Also, you should learn to reward yourself after completing things on the do-list. In short, people that are happy and feel good are more productive than those that are not.