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Controlling Work-Life Balance By Leaving the Workforce

The pandemic has only reinforced what we have known for a long time - people are leaving the workforce. In the last 20 years, the United States has seen a 4% drop in labor participation - with half of that number happening in the first 6 months of the COVID-19 pandemic. What we have not been able to do is learn all the details of why they are leaving and what they are doing as an alternative. That lack of information is changing as we study this topic more intensely. 

What have we learned? 

The gig economy is one of the places that many people are ending up - unincorporated and working shifts for companies like Uber and Shopify. What do these jobs have that traditional work does not? FLEXIBILITY. Working your way is critical, and as a greater number of options open up with these characteristics, more employees are leaving their jobs en masse.

© Copyright 2022. The views expressed herein are those of the author(s) and not necessarily the views of Ankura Consulting Group, LLC., its management, its subsidiaries, its affiliates, or its other professionals. Ankura is not a law firm and cannot provide legal advice.

The number of unincorporated self-employed workers has risen by 500,000 since the start of the pandemic, Labor Department data show, to 9.44 million. That is the highest total since the financial-crisis year 2008, except for this summer. The total amounts to an increase of 6% in the self-employed, while the overall U.S. employment total remains nearly 3% lower than before the pandemic.


perspective, labor strategy, operations, f-performance, f-transformation

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