One in five workers in the UK say they could change jobs in the next 12 months because they are looking for better pay and job satisfaction, a survey suggests.
Accounting giant PWC says workers have begun to “assert their power” at a time when many bosses are fighting for employment.
It found that young and highly skilled workers were more likely to be dissatisfied with their jobs or seeking growth.
Some 60% said they would prefer to work from home in whole or in part.
“The economic outlook may be uncertain but there is a demand for highly skilled workers and employers cannot be complacent,” said PwC boss Kevin Ellis.
“Employees will vote on their feet if their expectations of the company’s culture, rewards, flexibility and learning are not widely met.”
Many workers changed jobs or left the workforce during the epidemic, which economists called a “great resignation,” and the PwC said the trend showed no signs of slowing.
According to the Office for National Statistics (ONS), between January and March, for the first time since the record began, there were more job vacancies than unemployed in the UK.
The number of jobs going to work also hit record highs “driven by resignation rather than dismissal”, while regular wages (excluding bonuses) increased by 4.2%, though not as fast as the cost of living.
About 59% of workers said they would prefer to work entirely or mostly from home in the next 12 months
In March, PwC surveyed more than 2,000 UK workers in various industries and found that:
- 18% say they are “very or very likely” to go to a new employer in the next 12 months
- Some 32% also said that they are likely to change moderately or slightly and 16% plan to leave the job temporarily or permanently.
- Salary increases were the main motivation for job change (72%), followed by more fulfilling jobs (68%) and “really staying at work” (63%).
- Overall, General Z (aged 24 and under) and Millennium staff (25 to 40) are probably looking for new jobs, promotions or promotions, PwC said. Those in management positions are found to be more satisfied with their current job than those in non-management roles.
PWC also found that demand for improved wages was highest in sectors such as technology and lowest in the public sector.
Commenting on the results, Martin McTagg, national chairman of the Federation of Small Businesses, said:
“On top of the supply chain disruption, rising operating costs and declining consumer spending, this is really hampering expansion plans.”
Priority for hybrid work
Being able to work from home is also a priority for employees, PwC has been found, although most want to mix it up with at least some time in the office.
According to the latest ONS statistics, one in seven working adults in the UK (14%) say they are working from their home office in late April and early May.
Another 24% said that they have adopted the type of “hybrid” work where they spend time in the office or other work place.
Only 17% said they would prefer to work full time or mostly in the office.
Sarah Moore, PWC’s man and company leader, said: “Temporary solutions to business problems, such as hybrid work, have become the choice and expectations of employees.”