Work, how the choice criteria of those looking for employment change

They celebrate, celebrate and thank each other: they are the workers to whom the 1st of May holiday is dedicated. Yet they don't always listen and understand each other, which is why we are sometimes shocked when, believing we have met their expectations, we find ourselves with a letter of resignation in our hands. Shedding light, through its observatory on the labor market, is Guru Jobs, a selection company specialized in personnel searches for SMEs, which released on the occasion of Labor Day the results for the first quarter of 2024, obtained from a survey conducted on over 44 thousand employment requests.

The majority of CVs (53%) came from men mostly in an age range between 24 and 35, while the remaining 47% were attributable to women of the same age who were looking for work. The sectors in which people are most looking for work are manufacturing and services, followed by restaurants, healthcare and retail. It goes without saying that the area in which they mainly operate, and therefore the one that is most affected by turnover, is that of sales (16.16%): whether they are actual salespeople or clerks. With less than a percentage point of detachment (15.8%) are production, seated by the secretariat (12.79%), administration and catering. In any case, what moves men and women in the search for a new Employment is not, as one would often think, an economic reason that is second in the list of reasons why, at a certain point, one decides to leave a job. The motivation that drives the change is the possibility of personal growth which obtains more than 23% of the votes for both sexes. The possibility of economic growth, however, is predominant for 17% of men and 14.5% of women. The most substantial differences between men and women come when working hours are on the table, which represent the reason of change for 3% of men and almost 6% of women: double. The percentage regarding the need to move closer to home is more similar, which is 4.09% for men and 4.34% for women.

In the light of these latest data, it clearly emerges that time flexibility represents a more important requirement for women who, even today, are mostly burdened with the responsibility of family and domestic management and are also willing to turn a blind eye to the factor of economic remuneration. No exceptions, however, for both sexes when it comes to the possibility of personal and professional growth within the company in which one works: this last reason should invite entrepreneurs to reflect when they are caught unprepared for the discontent of their staff. “This discontent is not always the result of an economic factor – comment Samantha Marzullo and Nina Iacuzzo, founding members of Guru Jobs -, more often it is the result of a lack of stimuli and motivation, which can be remedied by offering not so much (or not only) an increase, but a growth objective, a challenge capable of rekindling the enthusiasm of collaborators”.

Worker survey 1 May 2024 Piepoli Institute for UGL

Research on the population and workers, by the Piepoli Institute for the UGL Trade Union, on the topic of worker participation in the management of companies, safety in the workplace and the adequacy of remuneration

Article 46 of the Italian Constitution: knowledge and interest

“For the purposes of the economic and social elevation of work and in harmony with the needs of production, the Republic recognizes the right of workers to collaborate, in the ways and within the limits established by law, in the management of companies”.

This is what Article 46 of the Italian Constitution states and this is how it was presented to the individuals involved in the research to test their level of knowledge.

This article is very little known by the population – 76% of the Italian population has never heard of it – and also by the workers themselves – 38% of those who work know it, 62% do not.

Yet, once explained, the article awakens the interest of many, both workers and non-workers: 75% of the population and 77% of workers find it important.

It has in fact been said that this article establishes the right of workers to participate in the management of companies. Participate in the exchange of company information, in governance with some of the workers' representatives, in company profits, in the ownership of shares in listed companies.

However, despite this, workers struggle to realize its full applicability in the workplace: 21% of workers would be very favorable to the implementation of the article, 27% against. A 'tiptoe' start is then envisaged, starting with participation at an informational level (39%), then from economic participation (25%), organizational level (20%) and, lastly, from financial participation (16%).

The article is therefore a concept to be explained well, but above all to be valorised in its practical scope and to be expressed in its concrete advantages for the worker: the percentage of those in favor of its applicability goes, in fact, from 21% of the total workers to 35 % among those who already know it, while that of the reluctant drops from 27% to 8% among the knowledgeable.

Safety at work

Another theme investigated by the research, also in this case with a view to involvement and participation, was that of safety in the workplace.

The interviewees were presented with official, public and very direct data on the topic of safety.

“In Italy the average number of accidents at work is this: one injured per minute, one death every eight hours, on average, therefore, 3 deaths per day in the workplace”.

Still few are fully aware of the real data and the dramatic relevance of accidents at work, even among the workers themselves: 61% of the population and 49% of workers were not aware of these data.

Upon closer inspection, the power of this phenomenon is all expressed in the level of concern. Sensitized about the issue, practically everyone declares their apprehension on the matter: very strong for more than one worker in two (57%), strong for all the others. A topic which, if understood in its scope, therefore involves all individuals in a massive and massive way.

The majority of workers, however, feel quite confident about the attention paid to safety in the place where they work: 26% consider it positive, 57% quite satisfactory. However, 17% of workers express their distrust on this aspect and this situation reaches much higher peaks among the most involved categories: 55% of workers, in fact, negatively evaluate the attention paid by their company to safety issues at work.

The issue is so relevant that the desire to contribute in a positive and active way to improving the current state of workplace safety conditions is very high: one worker in two (49%) declares that they could certainly do something more/something different to augment/improve the status quo.

This stance oriented towards personal involvement is therefore fertile ground for encouraging the adoption of safer practices, investing in worker education and training, enhancing best practices and increasing communication on the topic.


For more than one worker in two (58%) the current salary is perceived as inadequate for their job/length of service. The negative perception rises further among employees: it reaches 65% of office workers, reaching 75% among workers.

The perception of the trend in purchasing power in recent years is even more critical: in this case, almost 70% of individuals suffer a loss of their purchasing power.

The criticality is confirmed among employees (76%) and above all among workers (87%).

The situation places citizens faced with sacrifices.

First of all, we begin to sacrifice additional expenses, even if they are legitimate: giving up going on a holiday is the first choice of those who experience a reduction in their purchasing power.

Then you decide not to buy a car and, when put under pressure, also not to invest in your children, buy a house, up to the point of renouncing fundamental things such as the right to health: 15% renounce the costs of medical visits /health care, given that it rises to 40% among pensioners, affecting one of the categories of people theoretically most in need of these activities.

A difficulty that therefore adds to other difficulties.