Survey: Nearly 1 in 4 workers has quit job over rough commute

MENLO PARK, Calif. — Does that long, traffic-plagued commute have you keeping an eye out for a gig that’s a bit more convenient? A new study shows that rough commutes are a major reason people are throwing in the towel with their jobs.

The study, commissioned by employment and staffing firm Robert Half, found almost a quarter of American workers (23 percent) have left a job because of the inordinately long commute. The survey recorded responses from 2,800 workers over 18 in 28 U.S. cities.

Not surprisingly, big cities brought about some of the most frustrating paths to work. Respondents living and working in Chicago, MiamiNew York, and San Francisco resigned most often because of commutes. Twenty-two percent of workers reported their commute has gotten worse in the past five years, and of those who reported this, 60 percent said their employer hasn’t made any concessions to ease this worsening condition. Seattle, and Denver were found to be the top two cities where commutes have worsened in recent years, with Austin and San Francisco tied for third.

While an encouraging 39 percent of workers in the survey said their commute improved over the past five years, another 39 percent said there was no change at all.

“Commutes can have a major impact on morale and, ultimately, an employee’s decision to stay with or leave a job,” says Paul McDonald, Robert Half senior executive director, in a release. “In today’s candidate-driven market, skilled workers can have multiple offers on the table. Professionals may not need to put up with a lengthy or stressful trip to the office if there are better options available.”

Overall, younger workers and millennials (aged 18 to 34 years) were most likely to leave jobs because of bad commutes. Workers in Miami, Los Angeles, New York, and Charlotte, North Carolina were most likely to say their commute improved over the past five years.

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Ben Renner

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