Does logging onto social media sites make you more productive?
The study of 20,000 hourly workers finds “employees who actively used one or two social networking sites on a weekly basis, stay an average of nine days longer than those who don’t use social networks at all,” says Evolv. “Another indicator of attrition is familiarity with other employees at the company. The study shows that employees who know three or more people working at the company are more likely to stay than those who know none.”— Job hoppers make great workers — and other big data revelations
Are the underachievers the happiest at their jobs?
A new study finds that, in 42% of companies, low performers actually report being more engaged – more motivated and more likely to enjoy working at their organization, for example – than middle and high performers do. The findings suggest many organizations are not holding employees accountable for their work, allowing the worst workers to skate by, says Mark Murphy, CEO of Leadership IQ, the Atlanta-based consulting firm that conducted the survey. “Low performers often end up with the easiest jobs because managers don’t ask much of them,” he said, so they’re under less stress and they’re more satisfied with their daily work lives.— Bad at Their Jobs, and Loving It
Dare we call it a real recovery?
Although every jobs report is subject to revisions, we’re getting a clear picture of a strengthening recovery beyond today’s headline. The margin of error for each jobs-added figure is 100,000 jobs. The BLS’s initial estimate for August was 96,000. Then it was revised to 142,000. Now it stands at 192,000. So, should we ignore today’s news? Not so fast. 170,000 isn’t just October’s first estimate. It’s also our new three-month average. And it’s considerably better than the year’s average. Things are getting better faster. Where is this new-look recovery coming from? It’s coming from the beginning of a real housing recovery and the end of government austerity. In 2010 and 2011, the economy lost 477,000 public sector jobs. This year, we’ve added 20,000. That’s made a huge difference.Jobs Report: Time to Call It a Comeback
Today’s report came with a side of crow for all of us Chicken Littles, because it showed, nearly unmistakably, that we’re in a slow, steady recovery — one that could and should be faster and less mistakable, but one with solid positive trajectory nonetheless. Mitt Romney’s campaign is saying that the report showed an economy at “a virtual standstill,” but they have to say that. In fact, nothing about today’s report says “stalled” except the headline unemployment rate, which is not as meaningful as what’s going on under the hood.Simon Owens is an assistant managing editor at U.S. News & World Report. Follow him on Twitter, Facebook, or Google+. Email him at email@example.com
Examining the “squishy” math behind Romney’s jobs plan
We asked the Romney campaign and the answer turns out to be: totally different studies … with completely different timelines. For instance, the claim that 7 million jobs would be created from Romney tax plan is a ten-year number, derived from a study written by John W. Diamond, a professor at Rice University. This study at least assesses the claimed effect of specific Romney policies. The rest of the numbers are even more squishy. For instance, the 3-million-job claim for Romney’s energy policies appears largely based on a Citigroup Global Markets study that did not even evaluate Romney’s policies. Instead, the report predicted 2.7 million to 3.6 million jobs would be created over the next eight years, largely because of trends and policies already adopted — including tougher fuel efficiency standards that Romney has criticized and suggested he would reverse.Simon Owens is an assistant managing editor at U.S. News & World Report. Follow him on Twitter, Facebook, or Google+. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org
In August, there were nearly 3.6 million job openings in the economy, down slightly from July. Hiring picked up slightly, from nearly 4.3 million to nearly 4.4 million new hires, but layoffs picked up even more, from nearly 1.6 million to over 1.8 million.
While 4.4 million hires may sound like a lot of jobs in comparison to the 142,000 jobs that employers reported adding in August, plenty of people—nearly 4.4 million—also left their jobs, making for a net increase of 36,000. These monthly net increases should be roughly comparable to the job figure produced by the monthly establishment survey, according to the Labor Department. Things Are Not That Rosy on the Jobs Front
Has 2012 become the “shoot the messenger” election?
More of the 2012 cycle’s descents into fantasyland — the unskewing of polls and BLS paranoia most obvious among them — have featured Republicans than Democrats, prompting some on the left to argue that American conservatives have a particular hostility to reality. And certainly, the conservative movement has long nourished more skepticism of the mainstream media and of some forms of government authority than has the left. But there’s probably a simpler explanation for at least some of this: Mitt Romney has spent most of the year losing, and so the Republicans are the ones feeling compelled to re-imagine the polls. That Democrats share, at least, the impulse became clear Wednesday night when a CNN snap poll showed Romney winning overwhelmingly. The liberal twittersphere erupted with skepticism over a sample that, an easy misread suggested, was tilted toward Southern Whites. The progressive news site TalkingPointsMemo shared, then retracted, those doubts; others, like the enduring liberal blog Hullaballoo, which declared the poll “malpractice,” didn’t correct, and the episode prompted a wave of glee among conservatives who had watched the previous round of unskewing with some embarrassment.Simon Owens is an assistant managing editor at U.S. News & World Report. Follow him on Twitter, Facebook, or Google+. Email him at email@example.com