the Great Renunciation continues to grow in Spain

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Not even the delicate economic moment that Spain is going through, with inflation installed above 10%, an autumn that is presumed to be conflictive due to the demands of the workers and the shadow of recession on the horizon, have made the professionals of our country have stopped resigning from their jobs.

Resignations are accelerating. The Great Renunciation, a phenomenon that seemed associated with the bonanza of economic recovery after the worst moments of the pandemic, not only continues to take steps in our country, but has stepped on the accelerator and has been setting record after record since last month of April.

Thus, between January and July 2022, 38,575 Spaniards have voluntarily resigned from their permanent jobs, the highest figure recorded to date since these data were collected (2001), according to Social Security enrollment statistics.

no recent precedent. In April of this year, the number of monthly voluntary resignations reached its historical maximum, with 5,467 resignations. Only in September 2007, in the midst of the economic euphoria of the real estate bubble, Spain came close to a similar figure: 4,762. The striking thing is that that maximum was not a peak in April, but the beginning of an exponential growth in voluntary resignations, which in May already reached 6,465, in June 7,554 and in July, 8,268. August data is not yet available.

This means that only in the summer months, and pending the figures for August, more than 20,000 Spaniards have left their jobs voluntarily. In a normal year, the number of resignations is around 30,000 casualties. And if the trend of recent months continues, Spain could end 2022 with more than 80,000 resignations, a figure that almost doubles the previous maximum in the historical series of Social Security: in 2007 a total of 47,712 workers voluntarily resigned.

Why? The factors that motivate the Great Resignation are not yet clear, but according to several sources consulted by Xataka, some of the reasons should be found in the change of mentality of some professionals after a harsh pandemic, the real possibility of improving their working conditions in the face of the shortage of qualified professionals in certain sectors, the refusal of some companies to continue telecommuting or low salaries.

The latter, in fact, was what caused some sectors such as hospitality, construction or freight transport to experience an unprecedented lack of labor at the beginning of the summer. These poor working conditions, which in Spain dot many sectors, added to the skyrocketing inflation and the few salary increases, could be one of the main explanations for the accelerated growth in resignations since April: changing jobs as a formula to raise one’s own salary and not lose purchasing power due to inflation.

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An issue that concerned the Government. The figures, therefore, show an upward trend that is growing rapidly and that even the arrival of summer has not slowed down, quite the contrary. Before the summer period, the Government began to study the situation, which it saw as worrying, and the Minister of Labor, Yolanda Díaz, met with the unions to discuss the matter in May. Since then, silence, because between the holidays and other more pressing problems, the Great Renunciation has been momentarily in dry dock for the Executive.

The Great Renunciation in America. The phenomenon of the Great Resignation began to occur at the beginning of 2021 in the United States, and consists of the massive and voluntary abandonment of thousands of permanent jobs by people who decide to seek better opportunities without being forced to do so by being fired. Some of them, furthermore, do not even leave when they already have another job tied up.

In the United States, moreover, the figures are much higher than in Spain. Since 2021, an average of 4.5 million workers per month have been resigning, without the wave of layoffs that has recently shaken that country or the unstable world economic situation having put a stop to it. Thus, since the phenomenon began, more than 60 million Americans have resigned.

Image | Anna Shvets

Not even the delicate economic moment that Spain is going through, with inflation installed above 10%, an autumn that is…

Not even the delicate economic moment that Spain is going through, with inflation installed above 10%, an autumn that is…

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