More Employees Say They'll Work Harder, Longer for Less

[qi:010] It was only a matter of time until the economic downturn started chipping away at the confidence U.S. employees harbored towards their job safety earlier this year. As employers have continued to make cutbacks over the last six months, more Americans say they’re willing to bite the bullet and make job concessions if it increases their job safety, Glassdoor, a Sausalito, Calif.-based startup, found in a recent survey.

Six months ago, more than half of U.S. employees couldn’t fathom taking a pay cut, but now 42 percent are willing receive a lower paycheck if it increases the likelihood that they’ll keep their jobs. Employees are also willing to do more than just take a pay decrease — nearly three-quarters are willing to take on more responsibilities at work and 64 percent would work longer hours to increase their job security. That rise could be contributed to the fact that one-third of employees believe it’s unlikely they will find a job within six months if they were laid off, a view that remained unchanged from earlier this year. Plus, there’s a lot more job competition than before since unemployment hit a 26 year-high in June.

It’s no surprise that salary expectations have come down sharply from six months ago as bonus cuts are becoming more common. Fifty percent of employees believe they won’t get a pay raise in the next twelve months, up ten percent from this past December. This isn’t much of a surprise as slightly more than twenty percent reported their employers cut bonus amounts in the last six months.

A sliver of optimism remains: only one-in-four American employees fear they will be laid off in the next six months, down two percent from December 2008. Employees who work at companies that have recently gone through layoffs are more fearful, however, as 39 percent say they’re concerned about being laid off in the same period. Even though more employees are willing to work harder with less pay just to keep their jobs, many still think they’re less likely to be on the chopping block than their colleagues — 41 percent think their employers will lay off their other colleagues rather than themselves. What do they say — bad things happen to other people.