SI Review: August 2010


Last Words, SI Review August 2010

Most Americans Believe Employers Should Offer Wellness Programs
Three out of four American workers believe employers should offer workplace wellness programs in an effort to improve employees’ health, a Workplace Options survey reveals. Fifty-nine percent of workers agreed that employer incentives for health and wellness were a reward for being fit. Only one in five workers felt that these benefits were a penalty for being unfit.

"Employer-sponsored wellness programs are a great way for companies to not only encourage healthy activities for employees but [also] substantially offset the high cost of insurance for both the company and its workers," comments Workplace Options CEO Dean Debnam.

The survey also found:

  • Eighty-five percent of workers felt that participation in such a program would help them stay fit.
  • Sixty-nine percent of workers said they would be more likely to use an employer-sponsored program if it would help them reduce their share of the healthcare insurance premium.
  • Sixty-one percent of workers said they would feel more appreciated by an employer who offered wellness programs.

Men Might Want to Target Female-Dominated Industries for Their Next Job
Although the unemployment rate (9.7%) remains high for both men and women, men continue to be disproportionately out of work. Some men looking for jobs may want to target several industries that have traditionally been dominated by females, and transfer their skills to these fields, according to Boston-based outplacement and executive coaching firm ClearRock.

The unemployment rate for men earlier this year was 10%, compared to 8% for women. However, when the economic downturn began, the unemployment rates for both genders were approximately equal, 5% for men and 4.8% for women.

One of the biggest reasons for the disparity in unemployment rates is because some of the industries that have traditionally been dominated by men were more severely affected by the recession, including manufacturing and construction. However, unemployment has remained stable in several industries in which women comprise the majority of employees, including healthcare, education, and leisure and hospitality services -- and has continued to since the start of this year.

Women comprise 77% of employees in the healthcare and education industries, and 53% of workers in the leisure and hospitality services industries. However, men account for 87% of construction-related jobs and 71% of manufacturing-related positions, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. "Although employment in manufacturing and construction has been rising a little so far this year from very depressed levels in 2009, employment in the healthcare and educational industries has been more stable and has continued to expand," comments Annie Stevens, managing partner with ClearRock.

She adds that, "Changing industries to obtain your next job is a strategy that both men and women can successfully employ. Changing industries enables job-seekers to capitalize on the skills they have developed over the years and offer them to another employer in a different field."

About Half of Laid-Off Workers Have Found New Jobs
Fifty-one percent of workers who were laid off in the last three months have found new full-time or part-time positions, a CareerBuilder survey reveals, up from 44% who said the same in a similar survey late last year.


  • Fifty-seven percent of workers laid off in the last six months have been rehired by the former employer who initially laid them off.
  • Seventy-one percent of workers who were laid off in the last six months and have not found jobs would be willing to work for their former employer. Of these workers, 22% indicated that they would only return to their previous workplace if their employer offered them more money.


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