The job market is picking up, and workers are increasingly jumping ship.
A new Payscale report published on Thursday ranked Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance Company as having the highest turnover rate out of all of the Fortune 500 companies. Average employee tenure was a little over nine months.
Although high turnover may cause alarm for employers, Katie Bardaro, lead economist at PayScale, told Business Insider it’s not always a bad thing for the job market.
“Workers might be job hopping more than before … this means that the industry is hot and the economy is improving,” she said. “Some of the firms on [the high turnover] list, they’re there because they’re a hot market.”
“If employees have more options and can easily move, they’ll do it,” she added. “You’ll see it happening first with top performers … in this environment, companies will need to evaluate what causes employees to leave and improve these areas, such as pay, work environment, [and] vacation policies.”
Below is Payscale’s list of companies with the shortest tenure:
According to the report — titled “Companies with the Most & Least Loyal Employees” — companies with the highest turnover are mostly in retail and information technology industries. For retail, Bardaro attributes low retention rates to the industry’s mostly younger staff.
“Gen Y essentially doesn’t have the same feelings toward employers like their parents did,” she said. “They saw what happened to their parents during The Recession. They saw them lose their pensions and lose their jobs.”
“Overall, employee loyalty is not what it used to be,” she continued. “Numerous studies have put employee loyalty to companies at an all-time low and we see this in our data. Less than 10 firms on the list have employees with tenure of 10 years or more.”
As for the high turnover in technology, Bardaro said that’s just because the industry is hot.
On the other hand, Eastman Kodak tops the list as having the longest average tenure for employees at 20 years.
Below are companies with the lowest turnover rates:
Manufacturing companies tend to have workers that stay the longest. Bardaro said this has a lot to do with an older age group typically working in these industries.
“Although it has taken some hits, manufacturing hasn’t done too poorly,” she said.
While the report looked at how long the average employee remained with a company, tenure is not the same thing as loyalty.
“Tenure is how long someone’s been there, which is a part of loyalty, but it isn’t the whole piece,” she told us. “It’s much more personal than that. It’s about job satisfaction and what you would give up to stay with the company.”
Payscale’s report recorded data collected from 250,000 people working at Fortune 500 companies in the past year (July 1, 2012 to July 1, 2013).