Research Topics

Work Trends Surveys

Unemployment causes great stress not only on the individual who lost their job, but also to their entire family. The impact of unemployment has been researched at length by the Heldrich Center through its Work Trends surveys. From verbatim accounts from the unemployed to opinions of Americans who have been seeking employment for a year or longer, an in-depth portrait of social and economic experience is provided.

Workplace matters are timeless topics that the Heldrich Center has highlighted with the following Work Trends surveys. In American Attitudes About Work, Employers, and Government, worker attitudes toward employer/employee loyalty, overall job satisfaction, the value of education and training, and the government’s role in the workforce were explored. Next, workplace wellness programs were reviewed in Healthy At Work?, including the unequal access to these programs and views and opinions of employer-provided wellness programs.

The Heldrich Center conducted a number of Work Trends surveys to delve into the impacts of the Great Recession. Perhaps the most profound look came from Voices of the Unemployed, which featured verbatim comments from American workers who lost their jobs during the recession. The comments focused on what workers thought government should do to help the unemployed and what they felt would be most helpful to them in getting a new job.

A series of Work Trends reports focused on retirement, and explored the opinions of Americans as they described their expectations of retirement as well as their views of how older workers are treated in the workforce. In Taking Stock of Retirement, workers described a workplace in which trust between employer and employee is often lacking, while employers’ views are in contrast, stating the workplace is harmonious.

The Heldrich Center conducted several Work Trends surveys of recent high school and college graduates to gain insights into how they fared in the workforce, specifically those who graduated before, during, and in the wake of the Great Recession. In Chasing the American Dream, one in two college graduates were employed full time and 26% were working part time. One in five attended graduate or professional school and 12% were unemployed or underemployed.