Employee Loyalty Reaches Six-Year High; Slowing Job Market, Changing Expectations Drive Commitments
Byline: Kara Rowland, THE WASHINGTON TIMES
Employee loyalty among U.S. workers has reached a six-year high, says a national study released today.
The percentage of loyal employees - those committed to their companies and planning to stay for at least two years - is 34 percent, up four points since 2003 and 10 points since the first Walker Loyalty Report in 1999.
Part of the reason for the upswing is a slowing job market after the deflation of the 1990s technology bubble, said Chris Woolard, an employee loyalty specialist for Walker Information, a business research and consulting firm in Indianapolis.
Also, employers are changing their expectations of workers, Mr. Woolard added.
"You used to expect maybe one to two companies in your career. That's not the case anymore," he said. "Most people change their job every three or four years. So I think that relationship is now shifting."
The biennial report compares the percentage of loyal employees with trapped employees - those not committed to their employers but planning to stay anyway - and high-risk employees - those neither committed to the company nor planning to stay.
The percentages of trapped employees and high-risk employees were both down three points this year from 2003, at 28 percent and 31 percent, respectively.
Six percent of employees were reported to be "accessible," or committed to their employers but planning to leave the company for personal reasons.
The report is the result of feedback from 2,526 employees nationwide, 18 or older, working in companies with at least 50 people. The data were weighted against June 2005 Bureau of Labor employment statistics.
Loyalty equals productivity for Patty Ayars, senior vice president for human resources and corporate communications at Roche Diagnostics in Indianapolis. …