Half of employees quit over jobs not meeting expectations

Almost half (48%) of employees have left a role because it wasn’t what they expected it to be, according to a ThriveMap survey

Among Generation Z employees (those aged 18 to 24) this figure was even higher, with three-quarters (73%) stating that they had left a role because it didn’t meet their expectations.

The research revealed a disconnect between employees' hopes and the realities of their roles. When asked what these differences were, 59% cited job responsibilities, 42% pointed to the working environment, and 35% mentioned working hours or shift patterns.

Pay and reward was less of an issue than might be expected, with only 29% saying their salary or employee benefits played a part in their decision to leave.

These figures point to a significant problem in the recruitment process, revealing that in many cases the current format is not fit for purpose, said Chris Platts, co-founder and CEO of ThriveMap. He added that record levels of employment coupled with skills shortages could be making this situation worse, as employers focus on getting the most qualified candidates rather than the most suitable person for the role with the appropriate skills.

“It’s clear from our research that the current recruitment process is failing many employees; leading them to accept roles that weren’t what they expected. This situation is also harmful for employers; costing them valuable time and resources through increased employee churn," Platts said.

He added that authenticity is key to making the recruitment process successful and attracting the right people to an organisation: “Businesses need to take a fresh look at their recruitment processes to ensure they test effectively for the skills that are actually required for the role, not ones they assume are important. They also need to present both the job and the organisation honestly. Employees will appreciate this open approach, giving them the confidence to know what to expect when they start a new job.”

The survey was carried out on behalf of ThriveMap by OnePoll in January 2019 with 1,000 full-time employees who’ve had at least two full-time jobs.