UK workers switch off whilst 19% look for new career

UK workers switch off whilst 19% look for new career

UK employees are choosing to “quit in seat”, whereby they decide to stay in their current job whilst mentally checking out, according to a new survey.

The study, conducted by advisory firm CEB, assessed over 18,000 employees worldwide, finding that just 19% of workers are taking an active role in looking for a new job. This correlates to staff applying for roles online, getting in touch with recruiters and sending out their CVs.

39% of British employees reported a strong intent to stay with their current employer, which is significantly higher than their international counterparts in Singapore (19%) ad China (23%). However, it falls below the mark in Germany at 45% and America at 48%.

Brian Kropp, HR Leader at CEB, commented on the results, saying: “Discretionary effort globally has now reached its lowest point in four years, meaning more people are choosing to switch off at work. Rather than ‘write off’ those people who are disengaged, business leaders need to be transparent about how employees can contribute to the future business strategy and exactly what is expected from them.”

And despite more employees deciding to stay put, it seems that British staff are less and less willing to engage at work. Just 16% claim that they are ready to go “above and beyond to help their colleagues and volunteer for activities outside their immediate workload”. In America and Australia those statistics are at 25% and 20% respectively.

Though, with so few workers actively seeking new employment, perhaps the issue concerns recruitment just as much as it does HR. Speaking to Recruitment Grapevine, Bryan Adams, CEO and Founder of full-service digital marketing agency Ph. Creative, explains how improving recruitment strategies can lead to an all-round healthier and more engaged work environment.  He commented: “The most effective way to build a talent pool is to ensure you’re engaging with a community about what they are interested in.

“A candidate’s online perceptions of a business, via a website or social media page, are highly influential in determining an individual’s engagement with a company. Consequently, you must know and care about what these communities are interested in to sustain engagement. Transitioning someone from this community into your work environment results in a far greater chance of finding the candidate who makes a ‘good fit’.”

Kropp adds that he believes it is time for HR to take a more active approach to engaging otherwise disinterested staff immediately. He said: “At this time of year, people will be spending more time with their family and friends, inevitably leading to conversations about career progress.

 “If this issue is not addressed, we will see a growing trend in employees coming into work, going through the motions, but detaching themselves from work.”

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