What Is Quick Quitting and the Reasons Why It May Happen

  • Some people part of the Great Resignation may be “quick quitting” and leaving jobs that they’ve been at for less than a year.
  • LinkedIn data shows the year-over-year change in the short tenure rate cooled recently before ticking up again.
  • Recession fears may impact those thinking about quick quitting.

The Great Resignation in the US has been running strong, with companies struggling to hold onto employees who are ready to quit and seek out new opportunities in a tight labor market.

But there’s a new twist: “quick quitting,” which LinkedIn defines as leaving a position that they had for less than a year, according to its data.

People who are now thinking about quickly leaving behind positions, however, may be less interested in saying goodbye to their job given a potential recession next year.

“Quick quitting rising very much at the beginning of this year was reflective of a really hot labor market where workers had a lot of options, lots of bargaining power,” Guy Berger, LinkedIn principal economist, told Insider. “The slowdown in the growth of quick quitting reflects the pendulum swing a little bit the other way and it could continue to swing if we tip into a recession.”

The following chart shows the year-over-year change in the short tenure rate, or the share of positions that are held for less than a year, over time from LinkedIn. It’s important to note that this data doesn’t just include quits as it includes both voluntary and involuntary separations.

As seen in the chart, the year-over-year change of the short tenure rate on LinkedIn has cooled from March 2022 before rising again recently in September and October.

Although we’re not in a recession yet, Berger said he expects the number of quick quitters to start falling, since workers who “aren’t at an immediate risk of losing their job will have fewer opportunities out there in the coming months.” He added that “they might also be a little more cautious and a little more nervous.”

“And that’s almost a story not so much about right now, even though we see in the overall growth in quick quitting moderate, but more of a story about maybe six months from now when things do slow down further,” Berger said.

Those in white-collar positions may be concerned about what a likely mild recession means next year. William Lee, chief economist at the Milken Institute, previously told MarketWatch, that the recession would “be mostly a white-collar recession.”

But for now, LinkedIn’s analysis of short tenure rates using its own data shows white-collar workers are among the workers who quit quickly.

“​​Workers are also spending less time at each job in industries that are considered to be more traditionally white-collar, like tech, financial services and professional services, which mostly consists of accounting and consulting firms,” ​​a LinkedIn newsletter about quick quitting stated. “Skills for workers in these typically well-paid industries are in-demand, so there’s a sense of leverage for those seeking out a new role.”

Burnout and toxic workplaces could be two reasons workers decide to quit a job they haven’t been at too long

Although Vicki Salemi, career expert for Monster, told Insider that “we don’t know the specifics behind why individuals are quickly quitting,” Salemi said people may quickly leave a job because of a toxic work environment. People may also be quitting because of burnout.

“If you’re in your new job and you’re already reaching burnout or if you haven’t reached it yet you know it’s imminent, that’s an issue. That’s a red flag,” Salemi said. “And then the question is how can you address it?” One way to address it — besides leaving — is seeing if your company can “alleviate the workload.”

Salemi said she’s “cautious” though about people quickly quitting though because “it shouldn’t necessarily be spontaneous.” She said people need to make sure they have their “finances in order” as well as be professional and “have a game plan.” Salemi also said if you do leave quickly, it’s best not to make it a habit.

Whatever the reason may be that someone decided to resign from a job that they have only been at for under a year, the rate had cooled after March. Berger said the reason the growth rate may have dropped recently was because of a slightly cooler labor market and a slight increase in “economic uncertainty.” It could also be because they aren’t seeing as many new opportunities, according to Berger.

LinkedIn’s “workforce confidence survey shows that even though it’s been stable in the last few months, since the beginning of the year people are feeling a little less certain about their ability to find or hold on to a job,” Berger added.

Berger said that “the same things that led you to think, ‘you know what? who cares if I’ve only been here a few months, I should just quit and start the next job’ might be leading some people to be a little more cautious” and not as quickly leave.

Have you recently quit a job you were in for less than a year? Share your story by emailing this reporter at mhoff@insider.com.

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