A new analysis conducted by AnnElizabeth Konkel, an economist at the Indeed Hiring Lab in Austin, Texas, shows that the number of employment advertisements that mentioning a COVID-19 vaccination requirement decreased from 7.1 percent in March 2022 to 5.9 percent in June 2022.1
I believe the downward trend is indicative of whether employers think advertising required vaccination will help them attract the workers they want. Advertising required vaccination is a way to appeal to certain groups of workers, but at the same time, COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations are now lower than during the fall and winter. Employers may be hypothesizing that if the pandemic isn’t at the forefront of workers’ minds, advertising required vaccination isn’t going to appeal in the same way it did a few months ago.2
Employers Hesitant to Advertise COVID Shot Requirements Due to Tight Labor Market Conditions
Prior to the COVID pandemic, there were almost no employment advertisements requiring any type of vaccination. It was not until the late spring and summer of 2021 when employers started including COVID shot requirements in their job listings.3
According to Konkel, there is a possibility that some employers are deliberately omitting the COVID vaccination requirement from their job advertisements and are delaying to ask for proof of COVID shots until much later in the hiring process in order to avoid discouraging qualified potential candidates from applying for the job.4
Vaccination is a hot-button issue, and employers are trying to hire the talent they need. In a tight labor market, employers want to avoid alienating potential job seekers and therefore may hesitate to advertise vaccination requirements.5
Number of Employment Ads Requiring COVID Shots Varies by State
Although the number of employment advertisements mentioning COVID vaccination as a requirement has decreased across all states, there still remains a wide variation in the vaccine requirement when compared on a state-to-state basis.6
The analysis revealed that Oregon had the highest percentage of job advertisements with COVID vaccination requirements at 12.4 percent, while only 2.4 percent of job advertisements in Montana mentioned COVID-19 shot requirements.7
“I think it’s more evidence that employers are trying to be savvy and read the room,” Konkel said. “A state or metro area’s political leaning is a significant factor in whether job ads specify required vaccination, and employers appear to be responding to local opinion.”8
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Click here to view References:
1 Maurer R. Vaccine Requirements in Job Ads Are Declining SHRM.org July 14, 2022.
2 Iacurci G. Employers requiring job applicants to have a Covid-19 vaccine is declining, study finds. CNBC May. 10, 2022.
3 Maurer R. Vaccine Requirements in Job Ads Are Declining SHRM.org July 14, 2022.