🔴 A Robert Half survey finds job optimism remains high

🔴 Half of workers surveyed will look for a new job by the end of the year

🔴 More money is the top job search motivator

About 25% of workers are currently looking for a new job and another 24% plan to start searching by year-end, according to a new Robert Half survey.

What were some other key findings?

Some generational workers are more likely to make a career move than others, said Dora Onyschak, Robert Half regional director. About 74% of Gen Z workers are most likely to change careers, according to the survey followed, by 64% of technology professionals, 63% of working parents, and 62% of employees who have been with their company for two to four years.

While higher salary is a top motivator for most generations to make a career move, Gen Zers seem to prioritize other things like remote work flexibility, professional development, and their career path over the other demographics, Onyschak said.

The three top job search motivators include higher salary (55%), better benefits and perks (38%), and remote work options (28%), Onyschak said.

The survey also found that 40% of employees are considering contract work as a viable option these days.

The dealbreakers

There were also some key deal breakers for job seekers that were discovered in the survey.

The top deal breaker that would cause professionals to lose interest and withdraw from consideration for an open role is poor communication and follow-up from the hiring manager (52%), followed by excessive, or more than three rounds of interviews (40%), and a lengthy hiring process (39%).

Find a dream job concept. Job search application on laptop

Is now a good time to make a career move?

The job market is complex right now but for professional candidates, there is still a high need in the market and that need is still driving the employment market, Onyschak said.

“There is still an abundance of openings and career advancement opportunities within those sectors,” Onyschak said.

What other job search and hiring trends are hot right now?

Onyschak said from a job seeker’s perspective, many workers changed jobs during the pandemic and may be slower to make another move in the near term. People are being a little more strategic and more thoughtful about their next steps and where they’re going, as opposed to during the pandemic, when things were more chaotic.

“The quit rates have dropped and that’s from the Labor Department. Those have dropped from a peak of 2.8% in 2022 to 2.6% in May of this year. So, a little bit of a drop, but again, workers are still looking for new jobs,” Onyschak said.

Employers are hiring more strategically, she said. They are using flexible staffing to help fill in gaps. Historically, when economic conditions are uncertain, many organizations will lean more heavily on contract talent to scale teams quickly and cost-effectively, gain specific skills, and extra support during busy periods, and evaluate candidates for permanent roles.

Job Search (Robert Half)
Job Search (Robert Half)

What should employees keep in mind when looking for a new job?

First and foremost, employees must be discreet.

“It’s not something you should be doing on the company’s time. You should be doing it at home on your own equipment,” Onyschak said.

Partner with a recruiter. It allows employees to get into some doors that may not be available to the traditional job seeker, she said.

Make sure not to burn bridges. It is a very small world. Onyschak said it is important to treat your soon-to-be-ex-employer with respect. That means providing notice and tying up some loose ends.

“You want to leave on a good note because, again it’s a very small world. You never know who you will be working with again or who knows who in this world,” Onyschak said.

Magnifying glass over Jobs section of newspaper classifieds
zimmytws GettyImages

What can employers do to retain talent?

Providing competitive pay and benefits and perks are the two most important things to employees, Onyschak said.

Employers must also be open to the flexibility of hybrid work or remote work. That is going to help retain workers.

In terms of finding good people, streamlining the hiring process is important. Cut the interviews down. Having multiple interviews could mean losing people. Try consolidating those interviews down to maybe one or two, she advised.

Sharpen the job description. Include the skills needed but focus on three to four crucial responsibilities top applicants must possess.

Partner with employees to define their long-term objectives and provide opportunities to help them reach their goals without leaving the company.

If companies need to pause hiring, they should still continue to build a network of qualified candidates for when it’s time to add staff.

Happy job hunting.

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