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Breaking New Report: 2024 May Be Toughest Labor Market in a Generation

Updated: Apr 27

Surging Workplace Litigation, Accelerating Baby Boomer Retirements, Declining Population Growth, and a Disengaged Gen Z Are Creating Historic Challenges for Employers  


RedBalloon just released a ground breaking report examining the unprecedented challenges facing employers as they search for employees to power their businsess in 2024.   


“This year could be the most difficult labor market of our generation,” said RedBalloon CEO Andrew Crapuchettes, who was an early pioneer of developing labor market data for business use. “US Employers are facing a perfect storm of challenges that threaten to stifle economic growth and American competitiveness in the global marketplace.”  


The comprehensive report from RedBalloon reveals significant labor market challenges, including skyrocketing workplace litigation, declining population growth, accelerating Baby Boomer retirements, 7 million disengaged working aged males, and a lackluster Gen Z workforce. It also raises strategies for employers to leverage to find the best talent available. 


“We took a deep dive into the marketplace, including labor market trends and recording experiences from business owners on the frontlines of the economy,” continued Crapuchettes.

Key Findings: 


Workplace Litigation on the Rise

  • Labor-related class-action lawsuits against employers jumped from 25.6% in 2021 to 43.4% in 2023, according to 2024 Carlton Fields Class Action Survey 

  • Workplace lawsuits increased 50% from 2022 to 2023, according to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission

Shrinking Talent Pools 

  • U.S. population growth has fallen short of the 2.1 replacement rate, with the birth rate around 1.6, according to the National Institute of Health 

  • 10,000 baby boomers are retiring each day, according to Forbes 

  • 7 million working-age men remain out of the workforce, according to CBS News

Unreliable Gen Z Workers 


  • According to, employees who are dedicated, responsible and committed to doing quality work are more likely to produce better results and achieve higher levels of success 

  • Employers need to focus their hiring strategies on finding the right “values” and cultivating workplace culture anchored by a mission-driven meritocracy that values wor, rewards productivity and achievement, and promotes a shared sense of purpose 


“To thrive in this new era of labor market volatility, employers will need to rethink their approach to recruiting, retaining, and managing their workforce,” Crapuchettes said. “Embracing data-driven insights and agile, people-centric policies will be critical to success."


Conclusion: Prepare For the Road Ahead

Most will agree that the labor market will continue to be a challenge for employers. And, as the people shortage intensifies, more small businesses will likely abandon old methods that no longer work.

Employers must work harder at knowing who they're hiring, and what motivates them to excellence. Gone are the days when open jobs can be posted on mega-job boards with quick results from qualified applicants. Instead, employers must be much more careful and analytical in their approach.

In this environment, the 'easy' hire is likely to ultimately be a 'bad' hire, and a good-looking "skills" resume may mask a wrong fit. But with commitment to the right strategy, an employer can thrive in this marketplace, finding themselves pulling way ahead of the competition, because their people have the right values, and are focused on the mission.

Download the exclusive report on how to beat the 2024 labor market here.

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