Insights

States With the Most People Looking for a New Job in 2022

By  Brian Thorp

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June 2022

With a record number of job openings in recent months, employers facing increased competition for top talent have begun offering higher pay, increased benefits, and greater flexibility to attract qualified applicants.

These incentives have resulted in millions of people thinking about quitting their current job for better pay, a new career, or the ability to work from home.

But the number of people thinking about changing jobs varies by state. Wealthtender conducted research to rank the 50 states and the District of Columbia based on a review of online search terms frequently used by people ready to leave their current job for greener pastures.

Table of Contents

➡️ Main Findings

➡️ Ask the Experts

➡️ Methodology

Main Findings

A higher Job Search Score in the table below indicates a greater percentage of residents in a particular state looking for a new job compared to a state with a lower score.

With a Job Search Score of 88.80, Mississippi ranks highest with the greatest percentage of its population interested in leaving their current employer to start a new job than any other state. On the other hand, people living in Washington, D.C. appear to be most satisfied in their current roles.

wdt_ID Rank State Job Search Score
1 1 Mississippi 88.80
2 2 Georgia 79.95
3 3 Montana 77.00
4 4 South Carolina 76.90
5 5 North Carolina 76.50
6 6 Arkansas 76.45
7 7 Colorado 76.25
8 8 Michigan 76.05
9 9 Rhode Island 75.85
10 10 Tennessee 75.65
11 11 Arizona 75.30
12 12 Indiana 74.85
13 13 Nevada 74.65
14 14 Florida 74.10
15 15 Iowa 73.60
16 16 Ohio 73.10
17 17 Alabama 72.95
18 18 Missouri 72.95
19 19 Kentucky 72.50
20 20 Oklahoma 71.00
21 21 Wisconsin 70.85
22 22 Idaho 70.15
23 23 Pennsylvania 69.60
24 24 Minnesota 68.45
25 25 Texas 68.20
26 26 Kansas 68.00
27 27 Delaware 67.75
28 28 California 67.15
29 29 Virginia 66.50
30 30 Louisiana 66.50
31 31 Oregon 66.30
32 32 Connecticut 66.05
33 33 Vermont 65.60
34 34 Illinois 65.25
35 35 Maine 65.00
36 36 Maryland 64.80
37 37 Washington 63.85
38 38 Utah 62.10
39 39 New Mexico 61.00
40 40 Wyoming 60.80
41 41 New Hampshire 60.55
42 42 New Jersey 59.65
43 43 South Dakota 59.20
44 44 North Dakota 58.25
45 45 Nebraska 57.20
46 46 West Virginia 57.05
47 47 Massachusetts 56.95
48 48 New York 53.00
49 49 Alaska 49.00
50 50 Hawaii 48.55
51 51 District of Columbia 47.45


Ask the Experts

We asked financial advisors in the Wealthtender community to share their recommendations for job changers to consider both before quitting their current job and upon getting hired by their new employer. Click the Read More links below to view their expert insights.

Emily Rassam, CFP®, CRPS, AIFA, NSSA, CDAA People-Focused Financial Planning for Executives and Tech Industry Professionals Read More
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Emily Rassam, CFP®, CRPS, AIFA, NSSA, CDAA People-Focused Financial Planning for Executives and Tech Industry Professionals

Consider and evaluate any unvested 401k match, stock options, or restricted stock units before leaving a company. You may be leaving funds on the table. Also, if you are leaving a position with a non-qualified deferred compensation plan, it may become 100% taxable upon leaving. Talk to your advisor about how this job change may impact your overall financial plan.

Emily Rassam, Senior Financial Planner, Archer Investment Management

Website | Wealthtender Profile | Related Article

Nannette Kamien, CFP®, CDFA® Real Life. Real Money. Real Financial Plans. Read More
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Nannette Kamien, CFP®, CDFA® Real Life. Real Money. Real Financial Plans.

Here are the list of items we recommend looking at before quitting your current job:

Retirement – does your employer offer a retirement plan with matching contributions? What is the vesting schedule, i.e. would waiting a few months make a significant difference to your balance? Do you have any retirement plan loans that become due in full at separation of service?

Health insurance – understand your current plan. Does it make sense to take care of any health issues now or wait? Might be a good time to visit the dentist or the eye doctor. Will you need to replace coverage for your entire family or move to a spouse’s plan?

Life insurance/Disability Coverage – are you enrolled in this coverage? Can you take it with you or will you need to replace it?

Current compensation package – do you have any deferred compensation coming in the near future, bonus payouts, or stock option vesting? Think about waiting for these events to occur.

Get finances in order – do you have emergency savings? Will changing jobs impact your expenses? Do you need to move your home as well?

Nannette Kamien, CFP®, CDFA®, MBA, Financial Planner at Cultivating Wealth

Website | Wealthtender Profile

 

Cady North, MBA, CFP® We help women dream big and navigate their financial freedom. Read More
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Cady North, MBA, CFP® We help women dream big and navigate their financial freedom.

If you have a Flexible Spending Account (FSA) take time to use up your elected contributions for the year since they are use-it-or-lose-it. You can buy anything at the FSA Store including sunscreen, menstrual products, and first aid. Typically employers provide a 1-2 week grace period after leaving to use up your FSA dollars — double check your employer’s rules. If you have a Health Savings Account instead, these funds stay with you or can even be rolled over to a new employer if you will continue to be using a High Deductible Health Care Plan (HDHP).

Note how much you contributed so far to your 401(k) retirement plan. If you’re trying to max out for the year take care not to over contribute. The max for the year, no matter how many employers you had is $20,500.

It’s a great time to review your W-4 elections. Don’t assume that what you used in the past will be the best option for you at your new job and new salary. Use the IRS tax withholding calculator online (https://apps.irs.gov/app/tax-withholding-estimator) to figure out how best to fill out your W-4. It could also be a good time to ask your accountant or financial advisor for help adjusting withholdings.

Cady North, CFP®, CEO, North Financial Advisors

Website | Wealthtender Profile | Related Article

Brett Tushingham, CFP® Proactive retirement planning for entrepreneurs. Read More
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Brett Tushingham, CFP® Proactive retirement planning for entrepreneurs.

BEFORE quitting their current job, what actions do you recommend people take?

Develop an income plan to determine how long you have before your cash is depleted. The last thing you want to do is invade your retirement accounts prematurely to pay the bills. You would likely incur taxes and penalties and potentially jeopardize your retirement goals. You also want to review your health insurance options to avoid any gaps in coverage. Incurring a major medical expense without coverage could be catastrophic to your financial plan.

At the outset of STARTING their new job, what actions do you recommend people take?

Conduct a thorough review of your new benefits plan. Do they offer a high deductible health insurance plan? If you’re in good health and can pay the deductible from savings, you can save money on premiums and contribute towards a health savings account. These accounts offer many tax benefits and often receive employer contributions. Does your new company offer a match on retirement contributions? You will want to contribute up to the company match to capture that “free” money and even consider a Roth 401(k) if offered and warranted based on your tax situation.

Brett Tushingham CFP®, Founder of Tushingham Wealth Strategies

Website | Wealthtender Profile | Related Article 

Danielle Miura
Danielle Miura, CFP® Let me help you plan for your tomorrow, so you can enjoy your life today. Read More
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Danielle Miura
Danielle Miura, CFP® Let me help you plan for your tomorrow, so you can enjoy your life today.

Before Quitting Your Job:

If you have a 401k loan, check your plan to see if you are allowed to continue paying off the loan after you leave the company. In most cases, it might be better to pay off the outstanding loan to prevent a taxable distribution. For most people, cashing out their retirement account for nonretirement expenses should be your last resort. If there’s a gap of time between your jobs, consider applying for Cobra health insurance or getting a marketplace insurance. If you have money leftover in your FSA, be sure to claim your health care reimbursements before your termination date. Depending on whether or not your next job pays weekly or biweekly, you may want to consider tightening your budget or adding money to your savings account in the meantime.

Upon Starting Your New Job:

Read your employer benefits plan to determine which benefits are best suited for your retirement plan. If you are need help transcribing your employer benefits plan, reach out to a fee-only financial advisor.
Consider rolling over your employer retirement plan to another qualified retirement plan; this will prevent you from misplacing accounts in the future. Before you roll over your money to another retirement plan check the yearly maintenance fees. If you plan to continue to contribute to your HSA, make sure that your health care plan with the new employer meets the High Deductible Health Plan requirements.

Danielle Miura, founder of Spark Financials

Website | Wealthtender Profile 


Methodology

To rank the states and the District of Columbia, Wealthtender considered the rate at which people conducted online searches for indicative terms used by active job seekers over the year-to-date period through May 15, 2022. We then used these metrics to rank-order each state from highest to lowest calculated upon a weighted average of search terms as follows:

  • “indeed” (job search website): 40% Weight
  • “resume templates”: 25% Weight
  • “quit job”: 20% Weight
  • “remote jobs”: 20% Weight

Sources: Data used to create this ranking were obtained using Google Trends for the period of January 1 to May 15, 2022. View source data.

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About the Author
Brian Thorp, Founder and CEO of Wealthtender profile picture

About the Author

Brian Thorp

Brian is CEO and founder of Wealthtender. He and his wife live in Texas, enjoying the diversity of Houston and the vibrancy of Austin.

With over 25 years in the financial services industry, Brian is applying his experience and passion at Wealthtender to help more people enjoy life with less money stress.

Connect with Brian on LinkedIn

Disclaimer: In order to make Wealthtender free for our readers, we earn money from advertisers including financial professionals and firms that pay to be featured on our platform. This creates a natural conflict of interest when we favor promotion of our clients over other professionals and firms not featured on Wealthtender. Learn how we operate with integrity to earn your trust.

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