Over half of UK workers want to change career

Posted on: January 13th, 2016


With it being the start of a new year and a good time to consider our attitudes towards work, we were really interested to come across the findings of a study which reveals that more than half of UK employees would like to change their jobs – a wish that is particularly strong among younger workers.

As On Rec recently reported, new research by investment savings specialist Standard Life shows that 54% of workers in the UK would like to change their jobs. For those aged 25 to 34, this number rises to nearly three-quarters (72%), showing that there is a real desire for change.

There are, however, some barriers preventing them from making that leap to a new role or company. A respective 11% of survey respondents either worry that they’re too old to change the direction of their career (hopefully not those aged 25 to 34!) or simply value their job stability too much to leave.

Other factors holding workers back include a lack of confidence and not knowing where to start in their job search, each cited by one in 10 respondents.

But it’s not all doom and gloom; according to the report, the large majority (84%) were at the very least ‘somewhat’ happy in their existing roles. Job security was listed as the top driver of happiness, cited by 34% of respondents. This was followed by making a difference, feeling valued by their employer and considering their colleagues as friends – all of which were cited by a quarter (25%) of those surveyed.

It is also interesting to note the differences in motivational factors as employees get older. Those under the age of 34 were 12% more likely to place importance on career progression, while those over the age of 50 became less interested in salary than their younger counterparts.

While pensions were a key workplace benefit for most employees, this rose in significance through the age demographics, doubling from 39% of 18 to 24-year-olds listing it as an important benefit, to 84% of those aged 55 and above.

With this in mind, Standard Life suggested seven stages of our career that most of us tend to follow. Take a look and see if you agree:

1. Route Researcher – seeing what jobs are out there

2. Options Explorer – trying various opportunities

3. Path Picker – choosing a career path

4. Committed Climber – working hard to progress up the ladder

5. Role Reviewer – what’s next for your career?

6. Life Balancer – prioritising a work-life balance, usually because of family commitments

7. Relaxed Realiser – making time for the important things in life.

If you’re returning to work or looking for a new career direction in 2016, no matter what stage of your career you are at the Lucy Bristow team can help!

Image: Job search by kate hiscock available under a CC BY 2.0 license

Bristol recruitment icons