Monday, June 17, 2024

Aussies adjust to rising cost of living

Workers in Australia are looking for new jobs, asking for extra shifts, and switching to cheaper brands as everyday expenses eat up a bigger chunk of their paychecks, according to new research from Qualtrics.

Drawing on insights from 1,020 full- and part-time workers in Australia, the study revealed 51% of respondents say it is harder for them to pay their current living expenses compared to 12 months ago. A third of respondents (32%) said the current economic climate will impact their spending habits for more than a year.

With inflation in Australia expected to peak in the December quarter of 2022, the Qualtrics findings provide insight into some of the measures people across the country are adopting in response to the financial challenges faced.

Increasing incomes

In efforts to increase their take-home pay, 59% of workers in Australia want the opportunity to work overtime or extra shifts, and 51% have or are planning to speak with their employer about their salary.

Outside of their current job, 53% have looked or plan to look for jobs with higher salaries, and 49% have looked or plan to look for a second job – findings that mean around half of people living in Australia have considered holding multiple jobs or leaving their current one to pay for their living expenses.

Cutting expenses

Faced with rising costs, people in Australia said they are spending less on discretionary items and activities, such as dining out (51% are spending less), food delivery (49%) retail and entertainment (47%), and travel (41%).

Many respondents also said they have switched to cheaper brands for staple and essential products (44%), and discretionary items (32%) in the past 6 months. Price (76%) is the factor most influencing purchasing decisions right now, followed by product quality (60%), convenience (31%), and brand reputation (26%).

Delivering support

Qualtrics Employee Experience Solution Strategist Dr Crissa Sumner says knowing what matters most to employees and customers is mission critical for every organisation in the current macroeconomic environment.

“By understanding peoples’ needs, businesses and governments can deliver products, services, and support that positively impacts the people they serve, which will ultimately help them find and keep customers, attract and retain talent, and mitigate risk,” Dr Sumner said.

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