Top 5 Reasons Employees Leave Companies: From the Mouths of the Job Seekers

Christine Johnson on

A colleague of mine works directly with employers trying to fill open positions. Recently, one of the employers he was beginning to work with expressed his frustration about hiring.

“How can I find candidates who want to work for me?  What can I do?”

I told my colleague I was beginning to dive deeper at the disconnect between employers and job seekers by looking at my own data from the hundreds of job candidates I have talked to over the last year or so.  Here is what I found.

Top 5 reasons job seekers are looking for a new job

Number One

Lack of professional development and a “no growth culture”: Other national surveys support what I see in my data. Job seekers want to see not only how they fit in the organization today, but see their opportunities with the organization in the next twelve months to three years.  Employees want to be better prepared not only for their current roles, but in case they are laid off or something changes for the worse in their current organization.  And they want employers to support them along the way.

As one of the job candidates said to me, “The company said there was an opportunity for growth, but there was none.”

Number Two

Issue with current role:  This one scared me more than the other reasons.  I repeatedly heard the term “bait and switch” when it came to being hired for the job listed in a posting, but actually doing much different, less desirable work.  These job changes usually occurred either near the beginning of employment or within the first year of employment.  This group saw these responsibility changes as a lack of trust in the entire organization.  Ouch!

Number Three

Laid off: I cannot tell you how many candidates I spoke with said they had been laid off by multiple employers in the past five years.  This took me off-guard a bit because we hear of the “robust” economy with lots of job opportunities.  Even in a robust economy, there are mergers, acquisitions, outsourcing, and consolidations.

Tied for Fourth

These two reasons for leaving tied for fourth:

Changes in the organization: Falling closely in line with those concerned with being laid off were those who saw negative organizational changes repeatedly happening.  These changes included rumors of mergers and changes in leadership that were not communicated well to employees.

Time spent either at or commuting to work: Longer hours with less people (maybe because employers can’t find them) coupled with longer commutes make employees unhappy.  Bottom line.

Follow us as we focus on how each of these reasons links back to the changing definition of work and why creating a thriving workplace experience is important to an organization’s overall success and profitability.

Always appreciate your thoughts and comments.

Image Credit: Adobe Stock

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