Many “Re-Employed” Workers Not Crazy About Their New Jobs

A new survey by the Pew Research Center’s Social & Demographic Trends project sheds new light on workers who lost their jobs during the recession.

An estimated 38 million currently employed workers were unemployed at some point since December 2007, when the recession began. Now many feel that they’re currently underpaid and overqualified.  Just 38% are earning more than they did in their previous job, and only 28% are receiving better benefits. Most interesting, however, is the widespread sense among the re-employed that they’ve been forced to settle for a job that’s beneath them. While 36% of those who held onto their jobs through the recession feel overqualified for their current position, that number jumps to 54% among the re-employed.

Nevertheless, their gripes seem to be tempered by a relief to be working again, with 78% of the re-employed satisfied with their new job. That number is higher among those who never lost their jobs, 89% of whom are satisfied by their position. Nevertheless, the relatively high level of job satisfaction – despite gripes about salary and qualifications – suggest that an imperfect job is better than no job at all.

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