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Opinion
Conor Sen

Why Companies Might Learn to Love Unions

All those painful concessions made during labor negotiations could help employers retain workers as quit rates soar.

A spoonful of medicine? 

A spoonful of medicine? 

Photographer: Yuki Iwamura/AFP

Elevated labor turnover has contributed to a lot of the challenges for businesses this year, with direct and indirect costs that impact their bottom lines and make them less able to fulfill demand at a time when the whole economy is struggling with supply chain issues.

The monthly Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey provides one view of the quits rate. It measures the number of people who have left their jobs each month. In September, 4.4 million Americans quit their jobs, the most on record. Prior to the pandemic, the monthly rate was closer to 3.5 million. That's 3% of all U.S. workers quitting their jobs in a single month.