255 Essential HR Statistics: 2021 Analysis of Data & Market Share

A new version of this article, featuring the latest data and statistics, is available. Check out our report on HR Software Statistics for 2022.

What are the essential HR statistics for 2021? As a way of our response, we have compiled a list of statistics relevant to the HR software market, HR management, applicant tracking, and employee monitoring software.

If you’re running a business and your HR department appears to be struggling from a lack of staff to process more applicants, you could pick up ideas here about what the latest HR solutions could offer your business.

If you’re a developer, you should get a good feel of where the market is headed, as reflected by the numbers. If you’re an HR manager, you should see what new features could help you deal with the demands of your position better.

key hr statistics

HR Software Market Statistics

Based on recent HR software market analysis, the global HR market is seen to become a $38.17 billion industry by 2027. This growth is expected to be fueled by analytics, mobile apps, and vendors’ renewed interest in team-focused management. Developed initially as talent management tools, HR platforms have evolved into what they are today. However, the upgrade train insofar shows no signs of stopping so you can expect more robust systems to enter the fray. As a result, the expanding HR market research size is likely to continue to balloon. Here are some more HR software statistics for you.

  • 10.4% – the projected compound annual growth rate of the HR market. (Grand View Research, 2020)
  • 9.4% – projected increase in the size of core HR software from 2017 to 2025. (Grand View Research, 2020)
  • 13% – the forecast growth rate of the market for talent management tools. (Grand View Research, 2020)
  • $13.8 billion – the projected total value of the market for hosted HR software. (Grand View Research, 2020)

HR software market value

Applicant Tracking Statistics

Many companies now utilize applicant tracking software, further expanding the applicant tracking system market share. Proof of this is the outstanding growth being exhibited by the applicant tracking system software market. However, utilizing these applicant tracking tools may not be enough. To better leverage the power of these systems, it pays to know what’s happening in the area of employee recruitment, as you’ll find out from these applicant tracking system statistics.

  • 60% of applicants stop filling out application forms due to their complexity or length. (SHRM, 2016)
  • 50% of employers have claimed that the length of their job application forms can weed out applicants who don’t want to finish. (WPForms, 2020)
  • 72% of HR managers claim to provide clear job descriptions (HR Dive, 2016)
  • 74% of CEOs are concerned about the availability of employees’ key skills. Out of all of these, 32% state that they are extremely concerned. (PwC, 2020)
  • 39% of women consider brand important when planning a job move. (Glassdoor, 2017)
  • 80% of HR professionals report that soft skills are increasingly important to company success. However, only about 41% of companies have a formal process for soft skills assessment. Also, about 57% struggle to accurately assess applicant soft skills. (LinkedIn, 2019)
  • The top workplace aspects that are becoming more important in the future of recruiting and HR identified by professionals are soft skills (91%), work flexibility (72%), anti-harassment (71%), and pay transparency (53%). (LinkedIn, 2019)

A Day at the Office: COVID-19, Remote Work, and the New Normal

What does it look like working in a typical company these days? The shortest answer is it’s not set up the same way it was in the past. This is especially true when the COVID-19 pandemic swept the globe. Now, more than ever, companies are finding new ways to work. Many have opted for work-from-anywhere arrangements. And, freelancers and contingent workers play a big role.

  • In 2019, about 45% of US workers are working alone. This is down from 54% in 2013 and 50% in 2016. The American workplace is getting more collaborative. (Gensler, 2019)
  • About 30% of American workers collaborate in person and 14% collaborate virtually before the COVID-19 pandemic. (Gensler, 2019)
  • In one survey, around 51% of respondents stated that they have been more productive working remotely or from home during the pandemic. (FlexJobs, 2020)
  • The top reasons for improving productivity according to workers are fewer interruptions (68%), more focused time (63%), a quieter work environment (68%), a more comfortable workplace (66%), and the avoidance of office politics (55%). This may explain why 61% of workers view remote work as positive (FlexJobs, 2020)
  • The most important outcomes in work transformation for the next three years according to employees are (1) improving quality of work, (2) increasing innovation, and (3) improving worker well-being. (Gensler, 2019)
  • Work flexibility is very important to 36% of women job hunters and 29% of male applicants. (LinkedIn, 2019)
  • The average working week hours for private nonfarm payrolls are 34.6 hours as of February 2021. (US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2021)
  • 96% of HR professionals in the US believe that their organizations have effectively handled new ways of working as a response to the COVID-19 pandemic. (SHRM, 2020)
  • The confidence of HR professionals in the US on how their organizations have effectively handled new ways of working is much higher than in other countries. These include the UK (84%), Australia (80%), and Germany (66%). (SHRM, 2020)
  • Around 94% of US workers, HR professionals claim, have adjusted well to new ways of working. (SHRM, 2020)
  • However, field/facility and office workers have different experiences during the lockdown. Around 66% of HR professionals in the US have thought so. (SHRM, 2020)
  • The top four actions that HR professionals wish to keep employees safe and engaged at work in view of the pandemic are increasing communication (78%), providing personal protective equipment or PPE (64%), staggering the number of employees in the workplace at the same time (55%), and training on new safety protocols (66%). (SHRM, 2020)
  • Maintaining productivity (60%) and reskilling (22%) are two of the biggest challenges that HR professionals think they will face because of the outbreak. (SHRM, 2020)
  • HR professionals in the US think that these three aspects will impact a company’s ability to attract and retain talent: flexible work policies (78%), healthcare and other benefits (64%), and the financial stability of the organization (55%). (SHRM, 2020)
  • A reported 79% of HR professionals in the US believe that their companies have the technology to navigate a changing work environment. (SHRM, 2020)
  • Remote collaboration is the top technology investment because of the outbreak. HR professionals in the UK stated that they are more likely to reduce office footprint in the next year. (SHRM, 2020)
  • Only 22% of American HR professionals will be investing in learning programs for reskilling and mobile platforms. (SHRM, 2020)
  • More than 75% of HR professionals, however, did not plan to provide child-care assistance post-COVID. These include the provision of work-from-home benefits to workers with children at home. (SHRM, 2020)
  • Since the outbreak, 99% of employees in a survey wish to work at home to some degree. (Prodigy Resources, 2021)
  • 22% of employees are happier working at home. (Prodigy Resources, 2021)
  • 16% of companies are already adopting fully-remote growth strategies. (Prodigy Resources, 2021)
  • 55% of organizational redesign is focused on improving efficiency. (Pulse, 2020)
  • 68% of hiring managers state that remote work is going more smoothly since the start of the pandemic. (Upwork, 2020)
  • 22% of the American workforce will be remote by 2025. (Upwork, 2020)
  • By 2025, around 36.2 million American workers will work remotely. This is a significant increase from the 16.8 million before the pandemic. (Upwork, 2020)
  • Because of remote work, 70% of hiring managers have noticed a reduction in non-essential meetings. (Upwork, 2020)
  • 60% of hiring managers noticed an increase in schedule flexibility. (Upwork, 2020)

More Work, Less Fun

  • From 2000, US workers lost an entire week of vacation, dropping average vacation days from 20.3 to 16.8. (US Travel, 2019)
  • Only 76% of workers in the US have access to paid vacations (US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2021)
  • The top 5 occupations in the US with access to paid vacations are those in management, business, and financial (96%); installation, maintenance, and repair (92%); production (90%); office and administrative support (88%); and transportation and material moving (80%). (US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2021)
  • On average, there are 11 paid vacation days available annually for workers after one year of service. (US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2021)
  • For workers, over 20 years, 20 paid vacation days were available on average. (US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2021)
  • Only eight days, on average, are available to all workers in the US (US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2021)
  • In 2019, the US recorded 758 million vacation days wasted the previous year (US Travel, 2019)

Rise of Freelancers and Alternative Workforce

Once mostly the prerogative of IT professionals, alternative work has become a compelling option for all talents who have services to offer. Gig workers, independent contractors, crowd workers, and freelancers are having a critical say on economies everywhere like never before.

  • In 2019, Upwork registered $187.44 million in revenue. Three countries sit at the top with the US at $50.15 million, India at $27.37 million, and the Philippines at $19.66 million. Their combined revenue ($97.18 million) is higher than the rest of the world ($90.26 million). (Upwork, 2020)
  • In a survey, only 28% of employees across all income ranges stated that their employers have done nothing in response to the COVID-19 outbreak. (Glassdoor, 2020)
  • Only 16% of employees stated that their companies offered additional sick leaves (paid or unpaid) in response to the concerns over the outbreak (Glassdoor, 2020)
  • Freelancers have reported lower rates of the negative impact of COVID-19. In fact, 61% of those that freelanced pre-and during the pandemic state that they got the amount of work they desired or more (Upwork, 2020).
  • 58% of workers new to remote work that are also non-freelancers are now considering freelance in the future (Upwork, 2020)
  • From 2014 to 2019, the number of freelancers in the US rose from 53 million to 57 million. (Upwork, 2019)
  • The highest-earning gig workers are those in massage therapy with an average hourly rate of $27.84, freelancing with $25.33, home-cooking with $25.23, teaching with $20.81, and delivery with $17.1. (AppJobs, 2020)
  • The extensive use of alternative labor is not only limited to IT (33%). Other business functions, including operations (25%), marketing (15%), Innovation/R&D (15%), customer service (17%), and HR (11%) are warming up to alternative work setups. (Deloitte, 2019)
  • Businesses often see improvements in performance when employing an alternative workforce. Around 53% found a positive impact from using outsource/managed services, 30% found a positive impact from gig workers, 49% from using freelance/independent workers, and 17% from crowdsourced setup. (Deloitte, 2019)
  • 38% of independent workers identify as freelancers; 26% identify as a self-employed consultant; 14% identify as side hustlers; 12% identify as founder/owner without employees; 6% identify as founder/owner with employees; and 4% identify as something else (Deloitte, 2020)
  • In 2020, there were 59 million Americans recorded who freelanced the previous year. (Upwork, 2020)
  • Freelancers that are aged 55+ make up a little more than a quarter of all freelancers in the US at 26%. These professionals are largely doing project-based and skilled work (Upwork, 2020)
  • About 50% of the Gen Z workforce has freelanced in 2019 and 36% started since the pandemic hit. Also, 90% are likely to continue freelancing in the future (Upwork, 2020)
  • Freelancers are the fastest-growing labor group in the European Union; from 2000 to 2014 alone, their number has doubled. (Deloitte, 2019)
  • About 45% of American workers do side hustles to make extra cash. This is roughly around 70 million people (Bankrate, 2019)
  • 45% of surveyed employers worldwide say they are having trouble filling open positions, making alternative workforce in the form of gig workers, crowd workers, independent contractors, and freelancers their only viable option. (Deloitte, 2019)
  • The average monthly income of side hustlers is $1,122 (Bankrate, 2019)
  • 33% of organizations extensively use alternative arrangements for IT. (Deloitte, 2019)
  • 25% of organizations extensively use alternative arrangements for operations. (Deloitte, 2019)
  • 15% of organizations extensively use alternative arrangements for marketing. (Deloitte, 2019)
  • 15% of organizations extensively use alternative arrangements for R&D. (Deloitte, 2019)
  • 32% of companies replace full-time employees with contingent workers to save. (Pulse, 2020)
  • 19.4% of experts predict that there will be a significant increase in freelancing demand post-pandemic. (Pulse, 2021)
  • 34% of experts predict a slight increase in freelancer demand and 20.88% feel that demand will remain as before. (Pulse, 2021)

Dealing with the Alternative Workforce

Organizations that have been contracting from the alternative workforce do so to fill gaps in their organizations as they come along. The best practice, however, suggests going beyond this transactional model. Organizations can set up winning strategies to make the most out of the alternative workforce.

  • A 92% percent customer satisfaction rate was earned by 1,700 Bosch contingent former and retired employees worldwide. Aside from delivering outstanding work on an as-needed basis often at short notice, they offer invaluable coaching to younger Bosch workers. (Deloitte, 2019)
  • 75% of companies manage contractors via the purchasing department, not the HR department. (Bersin, 2019)
  • 75% of survey respondents in a study conducted by Deloitte reported that HR supports sourcing alternative workers. (Deloitte, 2019)
  • 66% of survey respondents said HR is involved in training alternative workers. (Deloitte, 2019)
  • 65% of HR organizations say that gig and contract workers are critical or very important. (Bersin, 2019)
  • 41% of HR organizations believe that gig and contract workers are a significant part of their workforce. (Bersin, 2019)
  • 65% of survey respondents said HR negotiates work arrangements. (Deloitte, 2019)
  • 63% of survey respondents indicated HR is involved in benefits management. (Deloitte, 2019)
  • 51% of survey respondents said that their organizations have specific plans to address recruitment strategies for the alternative workforce. (Deloitte, 2019)
  • 31% of survey respondents have existing learning and development plans for alternative workers. (Deloitte, 2019)
  • 23% of survey respondents said they survey the alternative workers for feedback. (Deloitte, 2019)
  • 22% of survey respondents said they award alternative workers bonuses and other types of incentive pay. (Deloitte, 2019)
  • 8% – the percentage of HR organizations that believe they are ready to manage gig or contract workers well. (Bersin, 2019)

Alternative Workforce by Age Group

  • 70% of senior leaders believe that gig workers are reasonable hiring alternatives. (Deloitte, 2020)
  • 64% of Millennials plan to do side hustle. (Deloitte, 2020)
  • 62% of young workers believe gig work is a viable work alternative. (Deloitte, 2020)
  • 61% of GenZ workers plan to leave their employers within two years. (Deloitte, 2020)
  • 43% of all younger workers plan to leave their employers within two years. (Deloitte, 2020)
  • 14% of Millennials already do side hustle. (Deloitte, 2020)

Biggest Freelance Platforms

  • Freelancer is the world’s largest freelancing and crowdsourcing marketplace with a total of 19 million jobs and contests posted to date and in diverse areas, including logo design, aerospace engineering, astrophysics, and logo design (Freelancer, 2021)
  • – 14 million freelancers in 180 countries, $1 billion total transaction volume. (Bersin, 2019)
  • Fiverr – millions of creatives in 190 countries, US $350–400 million total transaction volume. (Bersin, 2019)
  • The leading online job portals in the world when it comes to market cap are Recruit Holdings (Japan) with $65 billion, SEEK (Australia) with $5.3 billion, 51job (China) with $5.2 billion, Freelancer (Australia) with $154 million, DHI Group (US) with $110 million, and JobNext (Malaysia) with $46 million. (Fortune Business Insights, 2020)

Financial Stress and Its Dire Impact on Worker Productivity

  • $250 billion per year – the value of lost productivity due to worker financial stress. (Bersin, 2019)
  • 64% of Millennials feel financially stressed. (Bersin, 2019)
  • 32% of Millennials say financial stress impacts their daily work. (Bersin, 2019)
  • 33 peer-reviewed studies correlate financial stress to health and heart attacks. (Bersin, 2019)
  • 15% of college graduate salaries go to student loan debt. (Bersin, 2019)
  • 50% of American households have no savings. (Bersin, 2019)
  • 40% of US adults rated a C, D or F on personal finance literacy. (Bersin, 2019)
  • Median retirement balance is only $3,000. (Bersin, 2019)
  • 1/3 of Americans only pay minimum credit card balance, and average credit card debt is $15,000. (Bersin, 2019)
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How Alternative Workers Identify Themselves

How Alternative Workers Identify Themselves
Freelancer: 38%


How Alternative Workers Identify Themselves
Self-employed Consultant: 26%

Self-employed Consultant

How Alternative Workers Identify Themselves
Founder/Owner without Employees: 12%

Founder/Owner without Employees

How Alternative Workers Identify Themselves
Founder/Owner with Employees: 6%

Founder/Owner with Employees

How Alternative Workers Identify Themselves
Something Else: 4%

Something Else


Source: ECM, 2020

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Career Development Statistics

Businesses have been putting greater emphasis on employee career development as a way to increase retention rates and worker satisfaction. Companies are actively exploring different avenues to boost engagement. Despite these efforts, many employees feel disengaged and unable to experience career growth. To give you a clearer picture, we have compiled a number of employee engagement stats below.

  • 41% of business leaders hold the belief that their organizations fail when it comes to meeting leadership standards (Deloitte, 2019)
  • 83% of businesses state that they find it important to develop leaders at all levels of the organization. However, only about 5% of organizations have implemented leadership development at all levels. (Sylvester, 2019)
  • Employee development rewards and investments are not structured to support long-term organizational goals. In one survey, only 45% of respondents state that their organizations reward their employees for developing skills and capabilities. Also, only 39% state that they are rewarding their leaders for developing skills and capabilities. (Deloitte, 2020)
  • 54% of respondents believe that workers themselves are responsible for their own development. Only 19% believe that workforce interest when it comes to development is an issue (Deloitte, 2020)
  • In a survey, only 28% of employees across all income ranges stated that their employers have done nothing in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. (Glassdoor, 2020)
  • Only 16% of employees stated that their companies offered additional sick leaves (paid or unpaid) in response to the concerns over the pandemic. (Glassdoor, 2020)
  • The types of training that freelancers believe will advance their careers are networking skills (40%), marketing (35%), financial management (33%), project management (28%), and skills to transition to a new field (25%). (Website Planet, 2021)
  • Freelancers are concerned most about putting enough money into savings (76%), retirement savings (75%), unpredictable income (72%), being paid fair (72%), access to affordable healthcare (72%), and high tax (72%). (Website Planet, 2021)
  • 60% of freelancers are men and 40% are women. (Website Planet, 2021)
  • 86% of freelancers work at home. Some 40% also work in coffee shops. Also, some 19% reported that they also use co-working spaces. (Website Planet, 2021)
  • 13% of freelancers manage only one project at once. 70% manage two to four. Thirteen percent manage five to nine, while only 4% manage 10 or more. (Website Planet, 2021)

gaps in career improvement

Most Popular HR Software

  1. BambooHR. A widely-used and reliable HR software that’s designed for SMB operations. You can know more about this award-winning solution in this BambooHR review.
  2. Zoho People. This robust HR suite helps businesses achieve better efficiency in their employee management operations. With a built-in with LMS, check out this Zoho People review to know if it fits your HR requirements.
  3. Gusto HR. Another in-demand HR software for its smart tools and extensive HR functionalities. Read our in-depth Gusto HR review for more info.
  4. SmartRecruiters. An HR solution designed to cover the entire employee life cycle. Check this SmartRecruiters review to know why.
  5.’s HR platform is integrated with key business tools for collaboration, project management, and CRM. This comprehensive review discusses its key features, pricing, and capabilities.

Employee Monitoring Statistics

These days, internal corporate breaches have become commonplace, making businesses overly cautious at times when it comes to the activities of their workers. There is also the problem of productivity loss from employee activities that are in no way related to their jobs, which include gaming and web surfing. To prevent these problems from escalating, companies invest in an employee monitoring solution or HR software that keeps tabs on how employees are spending their time while on the clock. But the work does not stop there: companies also face complications from questions like who should act on key findings if they ever pop up.

  • 80% of major companies monitor their employees’ internet, email, and phone usage. (MBN, 2019)
  • In one survey, only 49% of employees say that their companies do not use employee monitoring software for work tracking (Clutch, 2020)
  • In the same survey, only 21% of employees stated that their companies use employee monitoring software. (Clutch, 2020)
  • Only 10% of employees would trust their employers more if their work is being tracked by software. Employee monitoring may affect worker morale. A balance must be struck especially in remote working conditions, particularly amidst the pandemic. (Clutch, 2020)
  • Only 22% of 18- to 34-year-old workers are concerned about having their personal information and activity accessed by their employers. (Clutch, 2020)
  • 72% of workers state that their productivity will not get affected if their company should decide to use employee monitoring platforms. 15% say that they will become less productive and 13% state that they will be more productive. (Clutch, 2020)
  • 16% of employers are now using technologies to monitor their employees frequently. (Pulse, 2020)

Pros and Cons of Employee Monitoring

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Source: Clutch, 2020

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Candidate Hiring Statistics

Because of the COVID-19 outbreak, HR recruitment became even more challenging. The US job market has dipped and is looking to come back to its old form. Lots of developments are going on in the market, especially with more dynamic demand levels. These include the makeup and preferences of applicants. Catch a glimpse of these developments by reading the statistics below.

Unemployment and the Candidate-Driven Market

  • 6.7% is the unemployment rate in the US in December 2020. In April 2020, however, the unemployment rate was at its highest in the last two decades at 14.8%, thanks to the pandemic. (US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2021)
  • In April 2020, there were 9.9 million people outside the labor force that wanted a job. In December 2020, this decreased to 7.3 million. These numbers, however, are the highest since 2000. (US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2021)
  • In December 2020, more than 3.9 million workers have gone without a job for 27 weeks and over; 2.9 million for less than 5 weeks; 2.2 million for 5-14 weeks; and 1.5 million went unemployed for 15-26 weeks. (US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2021)
  • The human experience is now being put first in hiring and retention. In a survey, 94% of HR professionals believe that employee experience is very important in the future of recruiting and HR. (LinkedIn, 2020)
  • There are about 85% of HR professionals that believe people analytics are going to be very important in the future. (LinkedIn, 2020)
  • 82% of HR professionals believe that internal recruiting will be very important in the future. (LinkedIn, 2020)
  • 74% of HR professionals believe that having a multigenerational workforce and managing them well is key to company success in the future. (LinkedIn, 2020)
  • People analytics will become very important. In fact, there was a 242% increase in HR professionals with data analysis skills in the last five years. (LinkedIn, 2020)
  • 77% of companies now focus on employee experience to increase retention rates. (LinkedIn, 2020)
  • It has been found that there is 41% longer employee tenure at organizations with high internal hiring (LinkedIn, 2020)
  • About 56% of companies stated recently that they have updated their policies to appeal to a multigenerational workforce. (LinkedIn, 2020)

What Candidates Want from Jobs

As the previous numbers show, industries find it harder to hold on to workers whose ears are constantly tuned to the latest openings with bigger salaries. Nevertheless, cold cash alone does not determine most candidates’ choice of employers. It could be extended health benefits to family members, or longer leave times to give them more time to share with their families.

  • 67% of candidates say that salary is the reason for accepting jobs. (Glassdoor, 2018)
  • 63% of candidates cite benefits as the reason for accepting jobs. (Glassdoor, 2018)
  • 59% of candidates say that location is their reason for accepting jobs. (Glassdoor, 2018)
  • 43% of candidates say that commute time is the reason for accepting a job. (Glassdoor, 2018)
  • 32% of candidates state that employee review is the reason for accepting jobs. (Glassdoor, 2018)
  • 57% of job candidates in the US take perks and benefits into consideration before accepting a job. (Glassdoor)
  • 67% of US employees say they are not likely to apply for a job at a company where men and women are paid unequally for the same work. (Glassdoor, 2018)
  • Only 52% of HR professionals say that their organizations provide a positive employee experience. (LinkedIn, 2020)
  • 58% of candidates view clear and regular communications as most important to a positive experience. (Glassdoor, 2018)

Reasons Why People Quit Their Jobs

  • 80% of the American workforce state that they feel stressed because of ineffective company communication. (Dynamic Signal, 2019)
  • 53% of employees don’t feel like their organization communicates with them in a way that makes them want to be an advocate for their organization. (Dynamic Signal, 2019)
  • 63% of employees are already ready to quit their jobs. (Dynamic Signal, 2019)
  • Even with a not-so-ideal pay, about 69% of employees would be less likely to quit if their company is more effective in communicating with them. (Dynamic Signal, 2019)
  • The top five things that employees want to change in their jobs are (1) pay, (2) communication, (3) management, (4) staff, and (5) office. (Peakon)

what employees want to change

Hiring Strategies Effectivity

  • Internal recruiting is beneficial. HR professionals believe that it improves retention rate (81%), accelerate new hire productivity (69%), and accelerates the hiring process (63%). (LinkedIn, 2020)
  • The top ways that internal candidates get recruited are via the internal job board (72%), managers reaching out (50%), and word of mouth (45%). (LinkedIn, 2020)
  • 52% of hiring decision-makers say that passive candidate sourcing has been less effective for their company. (Glassdoor, 2018)
  • 67% of employers believe retention rates would be higher if candidates had a clearer picture of what to expect about working at the company before they took the job. (Glassdoor, 2018)
  • The top reasons companies can’t find top talents are competition from other companies (43%), missing soft skills (36%), and missing technical skills (35%). (Prodigy Resources, 2020)
  • 75% of CEOs felt that they could not find people for the high-skill tech positions that they need. (Prodigy Resources, 2020)
  • 89% of hiring managers have found “few to no” qualified candidates for high-skill positions. (Prodigy Resources, 2020)

Top Challenges to Recruiting Candidates

The candidate-driven talent industry is further bolstered by organizations finding it harder to match open positions with the best qualified and experienced candidates. Put simply; other organizations have already snatched these people from out of the market, leaving late-comers to make do with what’s left of the candidates. Such is another reason why an HR software capable of monitoring the availability of candidates is of utmost importance right now.

  • 61% of companies say that finding qualified, and experienced hires are the most difficult recruitment challenge. (Deloitte, 2019)
  • 37%% of organizations say that identifying full-time talent with the right skills is the most difficult recruitment challenge. (Deloitte, 2019)
  • 34% of organizations state that finding qualified entry-level hires is their most difficult recruitment challenge. (Deloitte, 2019)
  • 31% of organizations cite articulating accurate talent brand as their most difficult recruitment challenge. (Deloitte, 2019)
  • 27% of organizations say onboarding employees on time is their most difficult recruitment challenge. (Deloitte, 2019)
  • 26% of organizations cite ineffective recruiting technology as their most difficult recruitment challenge. (Deloitte, 2019)
  • 25% of organizations say constructing an appealing job offer is their most difficult recruitment challenge. (Deloitte, 2019)

Shifting Focus: New Company Culture

  • The number of technical job openings in 2021 is 8.7 million. However, qualified technical candidates are only 7.3 million. (Prodigy Resources, 2020)
  • 59% of US enterprises no longer require degrees for tech and data candidates. (Prodigy Resources, 2020)
  • 65% of US developers claim that they are self-taught. (Prodigy Resources, 2020)
  • 35% of candidates would turn down a job if the company culture does not match their own. (Prodigy Resources, 2020)
  • In one survey recent survey, the top 5 factors for candidates to consider a job in today’s market are (1) culture, (2) salary, (3) job fit, (4) benefits, and (5) location. (Prodigy Resources, 2020)
  • Diversity has become more important for job candidates. Around 55% of managers believe that their organizations have a diverse workforce. However, about 75% of employees see their organizations as laggards when it comes to diversity measures. (Prodigy Resources, 2020)
  • 97% of companies believe that soft skills are of equal importance to technical skills. (Prodigy Resources, 2020)
  • By 2030, 29 million US workers will be missing the soft skills required by their employers. (Prodigy Resources, 2020)
  • In 2020, 73% of organizations registered an increase in online learning usage. (Pulse, 2020)

job application statistics

Employee Retention Statistics

One of the biggest problems that companies are facing is employee retention and turnover rates. Employee turnover, in particular, has been wreaking havoc on businesses. Companies are bleeding money as they continue to shoulder the costs of hiring replacements for resigned employees. Partly responsible for this is the fact that applicants demand higher base salaries. Take a look at the following statistics that reflect these and other developments in employee retention and turnover.

Employee Tenure, US

  • 4.1 years – median number of years that workers had been with their current employer in 2020. (US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2020)

Tenure of Employees by Gender

  • 5.1 years – median tenure for men (US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2020)
  • 4.8 years – median tenure for women (US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2020)
  • 29% of men had 10 years median tenure with their current employer (US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2020)
  • 27% of women had 10 years median tenure with their current employer (US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2020)

Employee Tenure by Age Group

In general, older workers had higher median tenure than their younger counterparts. Here are the figures:

  • For workers ages, 60 to 64, around 54% have been employed for the last 10 years with their current employers (US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2020)
  • The median tenure of workers ages 55 to 64 is 9.9 years. (US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2020)
  • The median tenure of workers ages 25 to 34 is 2.8 years. (US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2020)
  • The median tenure of workers ages 35 to 44 is 4.9 years. (US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2020)
  • The median tenure of workers ages 20 to 24 is 1.3 years. (US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2020)
  • The median tenure of workers ages 18 to 19 is 0.8 years. (US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2020)

Ethnicity Employee Tenure

  • 29% of Whites had been with their current employer for 10 years or more. (US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2020)
  • 22% of Hispanics had been with their current employer for 10 years or more. (US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2020)
  • 23% of Blacks had been with their current employer for 10 years or more. (US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2020)
  • 26% of Asians had been with their current employer for 10 years or more. (US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2020)

Employee Tenure by Industry

  • 3.7 years – the median tenure of workers in the private sector. (US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2020)
  • 6.5 years – the median tenure of workers in the public sector. (US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2020)
  • The median tenure of workers in different levels of government is higher than the overall median tenure of all workers. Federal government workers have a median tenure of 8.2 years, State government workers have a median of 5.6 years, and local government workers have a median tenure of 6.6 years. (US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2020)
  • In the private sector, the industries with the lowest median tenure for workers are leisure and hospitality (2.3 years), motion pictures and sound recording industries (2.7 years), and social assistance (2.9 years). (US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2020)
  • The industry areas within the private sector with the highest employee tenure median are utilities (7.7 years); computers and electronic products (6.1 years); and furniture and related product manufacturing (5.5 years). (US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2020)
  • The total workers that are 25 years and older who had 10 or more years of tenure make up 32.2% of the workforce. (US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2020)
  • About 33.1% of men aged 25 years and older and 31.2% of women have 10 years or more tenure with their current employers. (US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2020)

Tenure of Employees by Occupation

  • 4.9 years – median tenure of managers and professionals (US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2020)
  • 5.8 years – median tenure for management occupations (US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2020)
  • 5.1 years – median tenure of architects and engineers (US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2020)
  • 5.8 years – median tenure of workers in legal occupations (US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2020)
  • 5.0 years – median tenure of workers in education, training, and library occupation (US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2020)
  • 2.9 years – median tenure of workers in service occupations—they are also generally younger than those in other occupations. (US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2020)
  • 1.9 years – median tenure of workers in food service occupations, the highest in the service occupations. (US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2020)

Pay and Satisfaction, Markets

  • 84% of employees with high benefit satisfaction report high job satisfaction. (Guardian, 2020)
  • About 34% of employees expected a 3% increase in their base pay in 2020; 11% expected a 4.5% increase and 8% expected more than a 5% increase. (PayScale, 2020)
  • Around 85% of organizations intended to give base pay increases in 2020, (PayScale, 2020)
  • In 2020, 38% of organizations planned to conduct a pay equity analysis according to factors like gender and/or race. (PayScale, 2020)
  • The top 3 reasons to adjust compensation strategy are employee retention (~82%), recruitment (~75%), and pay for hot skills (~69%). (PayScale, 2020)
  • Top performing organizations reward high-performing employees with a bigger base pay increase (67%), promotion (52%), bonus or incentive with no formal plan (39%), career development (36%), and goal-based bonus or incentive (35%) among others. (PayScale, 2020)

Retention among Businesses

  • 66% – The percentage of organizations that see retention as a growing concern. (PayScale, 2020)
  • 57% – The percentage of organizations that have completed a full talent market study within the last 12 months. (PayScale, 2020)
  • 73% of organizations budget for variable or incentive pay. Also, individual incentive bonuses are the most prevalent at 67%. (PayScale, 2020)
  • The highest base pay increase to any employee in 2019 is more than 30%. This is for 4% of employees in a survey. (PayScale, 2020)
  • In 2019, around 19% and 14% of employees were given a 10-14.99% and 5-5.99% base increase, respectively. (PayScale, 2020)
  • As of November 2020, the total quit rate in the US is 2.2%. (US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2021)
  • The quit rate in the private sector is 2.5%. (US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2021)
  • The quit rate in the public sector is 0.8%. (US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2021)
  • The total annual separation rate in the US is 45%. (US Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2021)

Perception of Company’s Current Pay Brand

  • In 2020, 3% of employees and 2% of job candidates perceived that their target organizations have very bad pay. (PayScale, 2020)
  • 43% of organizations rate their pay brand as good or very good for employees. (PayScale, 2020)
  • About 39% of employees and 44% of job candidates rate their target organizations as neither bad nor good. (PayScale, 2020)
  • Only about 22% of organizations share market data with employees. (PayScale, 2020)
  • Only 6% of organizations make pay information available to all employees. (PayScale, 2020)
  • Only around 45% of organizations tell their employees when and what to expect in their paycheck. (PayScale, 2020)
  • Only 8% of organizations have a comp plan that reflects organization culture and drives talent strategy. (PayScale, 2020)
  • Only 32% of organizations train managers on how to speak to employees about compensation. (PayScale, 2020)
  • 25% of employees quit in the first year. (Pulse, 2020)
  • Every time an employee leaves, it costs a company up to 75% of the salary. (Pulse, 2020)

Source: PayScale, 2020

HR Management Statistics

Despite organizations’ heavy investment in technology, problems still beset HR departments. Complications that stem from antiquated practices continue to hound businesses, the results of which include internal breaches, productivity loss, poor employee retention rates, and difficulty in talent recruitment and retention. To resolve these issues, HR managers must know what’s happening on the ground. Only by knowing HR management developments will they be able to get a clearer picture of the factors responsible for these complexities. And one way to do this is to look at the stats.

  • The largest employee group that went through employee onboarding programs in the US in 2019 are new hires (90%). (SilkRoad, 2019)
  • Only 52% of internal employee transfers have undergone onboarding programs. (SilkRoad, 2019)
  • Only 51% of internal employees that got promoted have undergone onboarding programs. (Silkroad, 2019)
  • Only about 44% of interns/co-op participants and employees from mergers/acquisitions were enrolled in employee onboarding programs. (Silkroad, 2019).
  • 95.3% of onboarding comes in the form of hands-on/on-the-job training. (CMM, 2020)
  • Only 20.44% of onboarding training programs have industry-recognized certifications. (CMM, 2020)
  • Companies that are adept at onboarding achieve 2.5x better financial performance. (Pulse, 2020)
  • Onboarding is number two when it comes to having the biggest impact on profit margins and revenue. (Pulse, 2020)
  • Companies with strong onboarding programs can improve their new hire retentions by 82%. (Pulse, 2020)
  • However, more than half of organizations at 52% state that their onboarding programs focus on paperwork and processes. (Pulse, 2020)

Recruitment Organizations and Technology

  • In 2019, only 6% of recruitment organizations believe they have best-in-class processes and technology. (Deloitte, 2019)
  • In 2019, 81% of recruitment decision-makers believe their organizations’ recruitment processes were standard or below standard. (Deloitte, 2019)
  • In 2019, only 9% of recruitment decision-makers say they have strong screening technology. (Deloitte, 2019)
  • In 2019, only 12% of recruitment decision-makers report having strong outsourcing technology. (Deloitte, 2019)
  • The average HR professional with the right tools spends only 95 hours per month on strategic work compared to the 111 hours of professionals that don’t possess the right tools. (Pulse, 2020)

Which Recruitment Activities will Technology Have the Most Impact?

  • 87% – Sourcing/Outreach (Deloitte, 2019)
  • 83% – Screening (Deloitte, 2019)
  • 83% – Application (Deloitte, 2019)
  • 75% – Assessment (Deloitte, 2019)
  • 60% – Offer Generation (Deloitte, 2019)
  • 54% – Selection (Deloitte, 2019)
  • 51% – Candidate Close (Deloitte, 2019)
  • 48% – Interviewing (Deloitte, 2019)

Businesses Find It Wise to Invest in Employee Wellbeing

Previously the numbers show how financial stressors are contributing to worker productivity. There are more than just financial stressors, however, and organizations now take a holistic approach to get more from their staff.

  • Only 40% of US workers feel a sense of well-being from their organization. The highest share of employees that feel well-being concerns from their companies is 45% from Japan and Brazil. (O.C. Tanner, 2020)
  • 80% of employees feel that investing in employee building is good business. And, 81% of employees claim that their companies have made well-being programs very accessible when they need them. (Alight Solutions, 2019)
  • 70% of US employees cite wellbeing programs as one of the reasons they stay at their jobs. And, 68% state that these programs help them avoid getting sick. (Alight Solutions, 2019)
  • Wellbeing programs, 75% of employees claim, help them become productive and enable them to create a better financial future. (Alight Solutions, 2019)
  • The top five benefits that employees consider must-haves are health insurance (86%), auto insurance (72%), 401(k) or other (69%), dental insurance (69%), and home insurance (65%). (MetLife, 2020)
  • Only 55% of employees see life insurance and vision plans as must-have benefits. (MetLife, 2020)

must-have employee benefits

HR Software: Emerging Technologies Worth Knowing

As the HR software market continues to expand, we can expect more technologies to make their way into these tools, with HR professionals increasingly demanding more cutting-edge functionalities. These and more variables make up the ever-growing HR software market share. Here, we’ll take a look at some of the technological developments that are seen to impact HR management in the coming years.

Better Measurement of Employee Engagement

Current employee engagement metrics continue to change as organizations strive to improve the process. New tech will make these changes possible. Initially, traditional employee surveys will be replaced by new technology-driven listening techniques. These will come from engagement solutions that are expected to become popular.

Cloud-Based HR Solutions

Most HR system vendors have been migrating their products to the cloud, a move that has been welcomed by most users. Experts believe that this development shows organizations’ resolve in using the technology. Similarly, cloud-based technology is inexpensive and gives users easy access.

Nudge-Based Tech

Technologies that drive specific behavior are seen to become more popular among companies in the next few years. This so-called “nudge-based” tech gives employees a heads up on potential problems like low productivity. Additionally, they offer businesses the ability to set employee reminders in such situations.

Point Technologies

To improve HR areas such as employee performance and engagement management, companies turn to “point solutions.” These are technologies that add functionalities to existing HR systems. They easily integrate with most HR solutions, which now take days to complete. Technologies may take the form of payroll, accounting, and even top time tracking solutions.

Increased AI Use

Artificial intelligence (AI) will play a significant role in the development of new HR software. For instance, applying the technology to employee data will enable organizations to find employees at a moment’s notice. AI can likewise be used in fulfilling tasks like benefits management and employee onboarding.

HR management tools now sport more powerful functionalities, including employee monitoring and applicant tracking, along with the staple employee management tools that come with every system. Companies, realizing the benefits that HR software has to offer, have been quick to adopt such systems. HR tools allow organizations to manage their workforce more efficiently and even help in their professional development.

They have also become more versatile, integrating with many third-party apps that extend their functionalities even more. For instance, accounting software integration helps HR professionals carry out accounting and financial management tasks, including payroll management—without ever leaving the system.

They can also dive deeper and analyze the types and features of applicant tracking software. These should confer crucial advantages to HR departments, allowing them access to candidate markets previously not available to them.



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Nestor Gilbert

By Nestor Gilbert

Nestor Gilbert is a senior B2B and SaaS analyst and a core contributor at FinancesOnline for over 5 years. With his experience in software development and extensive knowledge of SaaS management, he writes mostly about emerging B2B technologies and their impact on the current business landscape. However, he also provides in-depth reviews on a wide range of software solutions to help businesses find suitable options for them. Through his work, he aims to help companies develop a more tech-forward approach to their operations and overcome their SaaS-related challenges.

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