Why have so many people left a role within their first year – and how could this affect their job search?
Let’s start with the latest facts…
- More than half (55%) of people have left a permanent role within the first 12 months, according to a study by Citation.
- The male participants in this group were most unhappy at work and, perhaps contrary to common opinion, also reported higher levels of anxiety in their last role (63% of men versus only 38% of women).
- These findings also contradicted recent research with older workers found to be the least happy.
What was at the root of this unhappiness?
The article only cites two reasons for leaving a role within the year:
- Poor management (69%).
- ‘Hostile’ work environments (62%).
It’s interesting to see that both reasons relate to the ‘people’ elements of work. This does reflect recent research surrounding the importance of strong working relationships.
A number of core employee values are shared, including:
- Supporting individuals’ mental and physical wellbeing.
- The strength of good annual leave, bonuses, and sick pay programmes.
- Flexible working opportunities (which is a popular theme in recent surveys).
Citation additionally recommends a number of tools that employers can use to retain new team members.
How does leaving a role within the first year affect your job search?
There’s no clear-cut answer to this one, it really depends on your CV as a whole…
If prospective employers see a slew of ‘permanent’ openings that have all been left within a matter of months, you may want to rethink your recruitment approach.
- It could just be bad luck. However, it’s likely that you’re not applying for the right roles and/or you’re accepting jobs that you don’t truly want. After a time, businesses may consider you to be a serial ‘job hopper’ that won’t commit long enough to warrant their time and/or financial investment.
- It may be worth having an honest conversation with a recruitment consultant who specialises in your industry. What’s more, temping could be a better option for you while you figure things out (see below!). Please note: you’re never advised to leave a permanent role to temp, as you can’t guarantee that you’ll always find work.
It’s a different story if you’ve been undertaking a variety of temporary assignments and your previous employers can vouch for this.
- Naturally, you should clearly communicate this fact on your CV too. Business leaders will be interested to learn more about your choices during your interviews.
Some industries are also less phased by their high staff turnover levels (and the CVs that reflect this) than others.
- One popular example is that of the technology industry. As this LinkedIn piece states, employee “turnover can be a sign of a very healthy, very unhealthy or changing industry”.
- You may want to do your research to understand more about what’s normal or expected in your sector.
Of course, it’s also a very different story for those who have a strong record of commitment.
- In other words, when job-seekers have only rarely resigned from a role within a shorter time period.
- It’s much less likely that this will negatively affect your career as a whole. It’s worth discussing what went wrong with your recruitment consultant, and what you’ve learned from your experience to date. Is there a particular type of environment that you don’t want to work within? Is there something you’ve experienced that suited you far better?
- As ever, during actual job interviews, it’s recommended that you focus on the positives of your prior experiences…and employers!