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Survey Reveals One-Third of Workers Still Fear Losing Job

Washingtonians Still Concerned About Job Security, Despite Signs of Economic Recovery

SEATTLE — May 11, 2011 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — As the economy continues to give mixed signals about recovery, one factor is certain – many Washingtonians are still worried about keeping their job.

Despite an uptick in national and statewide hiring trends during the first quarter of 2011, nearly one-third of Washingtonians are concerned about job security, according to data released today in the 3rd Annual Washington State Workplace Confidence Survey conducted by Harris/Decima on behalf of Everest College.

When asked about the high unemployment impacting the state and country, 30 percent of Washington workers said they were concerned about losing their job. Compared with last year, confidence in job security has not budged in 2011, with nearly the same number of Washington workers (29 percent) concerned about losing their job. One change from last year is that more workers are willing to put in extra hours to keep their job. Compared with 2010, significantly more people in 2011 have considered working longer hours to avoid being laid off (20 percent to 14 percent).

“While recent data indicate that hiring is headed in the right direction, the survey reveals that many people are still anxious about job security,” said Wendy Cullen, vice president of employer development for Everest College. “The last three years have been filled with economic hardships for many in Washington and throughout the country, so it’s natural for workers to be a bit cautious. At Everest, we have found that our career programs are popular because they focus on careers that are in-demand, offer flexibility and have the potential for long-term growth.”

Pay Is Top Stressor
The survey found that workplace anxiety levels in Washington continue to be high with nearly two-thirds (62 percent) of survey respondents claiming they suffer from some form of work-related stress. The top stress factor cited by respondents was pay (27 percent), followed by fear of losing their job (20 percent) and their boss (7 percent). Compared with 2010, significantly less people indicated their boss was causing the most stress at their job (14 percent to 7 percent).

Income is a differentiating factor when it comes to whether or not respondents are stressed at work. Those with household incomes of $80,000 or higher are more likely not to be stressed at work when compared with those whose household income is less than $50,000 (47 percent to 27 percent).

If they lost their job, one-third (35 percent) of respondents said they would consider leaving Washington to search for a new job, with men significantly more likely than women to look for a job outside of the state by a margin of 43 percent to 25 percent.

Meanwhile, half (54 percent) of the respondents said they have considered one of the following: returning to school to enhance their current career (27 percent); a new career in order to make more money (22 percent); or returning to school to train for a new career (22 percent).

“We all know what it feels like to be stressed at work, but that doesn’t mean you should settle for a career that doesn’t make you happy,” Cullen said. “This survey serves as an important reminder to regularly re-evaluate what you want out of your job, set goals and, if necessary, chart a new path.”

“For many workers, career training can open the door to that new path, offering a more rewarding work life. Everest College is really in tune with this concept and can be the solution for many people looking to turn their work life in a positive direction.”

Top Careers For Stability
The following occupations continue to see high demand based on U.S. Department of Labor industry trend information through 2018, according to the 2010-11 Occupational Outlook Handbook:

“Obviously, health care is and will continue to be one of the strongest industries because of the aging population,” said Cullen. “A majority of Everest’s programs are in the health care field, giving our students the opportunity for an in-demand career that can serve as a springboard for more advanced health care careers later.”

By the Numbers: 3rd Annual Washington State Workplace Confidence Survey Fast Facts

  • Fourteen percent of Washingtonians said that someone in their household has lost their job in the past 12 months. Those with a household income of less than $50,000 are significantly more likely than those with a household income of $80,000 or more to have had someone in their household experience a job loss (22 percent to 10 percent).
  • When envisioning their dream jobs, 85 percent of employed Americans living in Washington State said doing something they love was most important, followed by better pay (60 percent).
  • Compared with 2010, more Washingtonians would like to have a good relationship with their boss (52 percent to 43 percent) in their dream job.

About the Survey
The 3rd Annual Washington State Workplace Confidence Survey was conducted by Harris/Decima from March 16 to March 20, 2011. A total of 300 employed residents of Washington State were surveyed by telephone. Results are considered accurate to +/- 5.7 percent 19 times out of 20.

About Everest College
Everest College is part of Corinthian Colleges, Inc., one of the largest post-secondary education companies in North America. Its mission is to prepare students for careers in demand or for advancement in their chosen field. It offers diploma programs and associate, bachelor’s and master’s degrees in a variety of high-demand occupational areas, including health care, transportation technology and maintenance, criminal justice, business, information technology and construction trades.  Programs vary by campus. For more information, please visit www.Everest.edu.

About Harris/Decima
Harris/Decima is one of North America’s most established names in public opinion and market research, with a 25-year track record of innovation and client satisfaction. Today, they are among the largest full service marketing research organizations in North America. Harris/Decima offers a full slate of custom and syndicated research services, including telephone and on-site interviewing, self-administered mail-back and on-line surveys, as well as qualitative one-on-one executive interviewing and focus groups. Harris/Decima conducts research on public and social policy, program evaluation, employee satisfaction, issue management, marketing, advertising and communications testing and evaluation for a wide range of clients in the public, private, and third party sectors. For more information, please visit www.harrisdecima.ca

EDITOR’S NOTE: Wendy Cullen, vice president of employer development for Everest College, is available for interviews to discuss the survey and provide tips on recession-proofing your career. To schedule an interview with Wendy or for more information on the 3rd Annual Washington State Workplace Confidence Survey, please contact Ron Neal or Meg Wilson at PondelWilkinson Inc.: Tel: 310-279-5980; Email: rneal@pondel.com and/or mwilson@pondel.com

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