RALEIGH – North Carolina’s workers are quitting at the eighth-fastest rate of any U.S. state, a new analysis of U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics data from WalletHub concluded.
The study, which double-weighted the most recent month of data, found that 3.5% of workers in North Carolina left a job in the most recent month for which data is available.
That’s higher than the 3.38% average over the prior 12 month period.
Both numbers have increased since a March 2022 analysis from WalletHub that used the same methodology.
In March, the state’s quit rate was 2.9% for the most recent month in the data set, and 3.24% over the prior 12 month period.
“The main reason for higher resignations is that more people are leaving previous jobs for new and better ones,” said John Winters, a professor of economics at Iowa State University and a past president of the Southern Regional Science Association, in responding to WalletHub’s request for comment. “The labor market has been quite strong over the past few months and firms are heavily competing for scarce workers.”
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics data is from March 2022. April 2022 data will be available in mid-June, according to the bureau’s website.
NC’s labor economy
A January 2022 analysis from WalletHub, again using the same methodology, ranked North Carolina ninth overall, with 3.6% of workers departing jobs in the prior month.
WRAL TechWire contributor and economist Michael Walden, Ph.D., said in January that the quit rate can be seen as a positive sign for the state’s labor market and its economy.
“In my opinion, NC ranks high on the resignation scale because it has a dynamic economy that has generated significant expansion in better paying jobs, such as in tech, finance, and healthcare,” Walden told WRAL TechWire in January. “So, compared to other states, NC has had the type of economy that allowed the up-skilling plan to work.”
There is still a downside, which is that labor shortages remain in North Carolina’s economy in the sectors where those who have chosen to up-skill have left, Walden said. Technology roles are also at an all-time high in North Carolina, according to the most recent analysis from the North Carolina Technology Association, NC TECH, as companies are seeking to add talent or to replace workers who’ve accepted a new position.
“The great resignation, and the self-generated up-skilling that has been a big factor behind it, will ultimately be viewed as one of the unexpected, but beneficial, results of the pandemic,” Walden noted in January.
One Triangle company seeking to hire, then train workers leaving sectors such as hospitality, tourism, or leisure, is Fidelity, which recently announced plans to hire an additional 1,700 workers in North Carolina with many roles that do not require a college degree.
The University of North Carolina at Charlotte hosts a virtual briefing on the state’s economy tomorrow at noon.