Why the Great Resignation is a Great Opportunity

by | Dec 21, 2021

Learn from Pathstream students who shifted into high growth careers

I remember the day everything changed. My employer at the time issued a work from home mandate amid reports of COVID arriving in the US and one of the first major outbreaks near Seattle where I lived. I was one of the lucky workers who could work from home, but essential workers like my dad could not step away. Despite being in a high-risk group, he had to keep working. We needed folks like him to keep society going. But after initial expressions of appreciation, in many cases, we offered essential workers no additional compensation, support, or protection for the important labor they were doing to keep everything from falling apart. It’s no surprise what’s happening in the labor market now. 

The Great Resignation is in full swing. There are headlines trumpeting it in every publication from the Durango Herald to the New York Times. On TikTok there are roughly 200M views of the #quitmyjob hashtag. It’s a simple phrase to describe a complicated phenomenon. People are quitting their jobs, a tidal wave of resignations.  Looking at the US alone, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported a record 10.9 Million open jobs at the end of July 2021. Records for unemployment were subsequently broken in August and September. What factors underpin this exodus of workers? Derek Thompson of The Atlantic provides a clear-eyed assessment here. Though there are myriad reasons that individuals are making career transitions, one of the most significant is that undervalued workers are leaving in pursuit of better jobs. Take Josh, an associate picking up boxes in a Walmart warehouse. He quit Walmart, but when he returned a year later, his mentality had shifted. He didn’t just want a job anymore. He wanted a career. In the midst of an ongoing global pandemic where the stakes are life and death, people are reevaluating their lives and deciding they deserve more out of their jobs, fair wages, and fundamental supports like health care and child care. 

There are multiple ways to address the “Great Resignation”, but one of them is to help people move up into technical roles and out of poorly compensated and frustrating jobs. We know there is a global skills shortage. According to the World Economic Forum, there will be 149 million new technology-oriented jobs by 2025. As of 2021, one survey by the Manpower group suggests 69% of companies globally are reporting a shortage of candidates. We know there are well-paid technical jobs going unfilled. 

Pathstream is a company working with a mission to address the skilled talent shortage by training and guiding people into these jobs via four fast pathways to high-growth careers that allow for flexible remote work and don’t require prior experience or coding. I joined Pathstream because I believe in this mission. I have seen firsthand the returns for people who complete Pathstream’s certificate programs benefiting from the digital skills training and career coaching, the exuberance of a new career. 

Caroline Benson graduated from Auburn University in 2018 and spent her years after college working in retail. She started as a Sales Associate and eventually rose to become a Store Manager and Showroom Manager. However, when the pandemic hit, she was laid off from her job like many others working in the retail sector. Caroline enrolled in the Facebook Digital Marketing Certificate. She learned about marketing strategy, Facebook ads, Google analytics, social media marketing, and more. Within a few months, she was hired to be the Social Media Manager for Rocket Bug, a children’s clothing company based in North Carolina. She increased her salary by $22,000. “The certificate helped me gain experience in the field,” Caroline said. She credits her instructors for helping her realize that she had the potential to earn significantly more and take the leap into a new career. To see Caroline’s work in action, you can check out Rocketbug on Instagram or Twitter!

Maybe you are interested in a new career pathway? Maybe you would benefit from hiring one of our graduates? We would love to connect with you. Visit us here to learn more about how we are preparing students for high-demand digital skill careers. Check out testimonials from our students and partners here!  

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