Job Security Low for Young Workers

Stressed! Job security low for young workersLegal & General’s latest Job Security Index shows that job security for younger workers is at its lowest level this year.

The quarterly Job Security Index, which examines the outlook for 18-24 year olds, shows that job security has fallen from 82% at the beginning of 2012 to 76% now.

Whilst data from the Office of National Statistics (ONS) indicated last month that unemployment has fallen amongst young workers, Legal & General’s findings are that youngsters are feeling less confident in the long-term viability of their roles.

Whilst youth unemployment is down and the confidence levels are not as great as they could be, there are other indications that the 18-24 age group are quite resourceful; 20% of those questioned said that they had a part-time skill or hobby that they felt they could turn to, full-time, if they were ever found themselves redundant, the hope being that they could potentially earn a living from their skills & hobbies.

Conversely, another 23% of the same age bracket said they had skills & hobbies but didn’t believe they could earn a living wage from them.

The Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) had looked at previous falls in unemployment and saw that self-employment was on the rise but that the phenomena was creating an "odd-job" culture.

Mark Holweger, the Director of Legal & General’s general insurance business said of the findings:

“It’s important for people of all ages to consider the practical implications of unemployment, should it unfortunately happen to them. Having a back-up plan is great but unfortunately turning a part-time hobby into a full-time role that generates the same level of income isn’t always the solution. Plus it can take time to generate sufficient income, which is where insurance cover is able to help offering dependable financial support.”

Research published in Legal & General Investment Management’s monthly publication Fundamentals recently backed up the CIPD’s view that self-employment was on the rise but also found that there has been an increase in the number of part-time workers in the economy. This indicates an element of caution in the UK labour market and may explain the fears of workers about their job security. (See Fundamentals, November 2012 – Learning to Walk (PDF))

Holweger’s biggest concern however, was with the larger proportion of the workforce who had no contingency plan in place should they lose their jobs.

The same Job Security Index indicated that as many as 75% of young adult workers had nothing in place to cover their household bills in the event that they become out of work.

The national average is actually 69% so workers in the 18-24 age range are more vulnerable than more mature members of the workforce.

Mark Holweger acknowledged that, whilst some youngsters may be still living at home with their parents, the practice was potentially not sustainable in the long term with Holweger adding:

“As we never know what might be around the corner it’s best to be fully prepared where possible.”

For youngsters concerned over their job security Legal & General’s Lifestyle Cover provides a monthly benefit for up to 12 months, covering household expenditure in the eventualities of (involuntary) unemployment, sickness or an accident. For more information go to www.legalandgeneral.com/lifestyle or call 0800 197 2351.

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