Are you at risk of losing your best talent?

By Robert Half on 19th January 2022

2021 was a whirlwind of a year, with confidence in the UK’s economic recovery creating the ‘Great Resignation’ both here and in the US – and it is likely to form one of 2022’s biggest employment trends.

Our latest research reveals that up to 9.4 million workers will search for a new role in the first six months of this year – a third (32%) of all of those currently in the workforce. Companies in London and the South-east at the highest risk of losing their best talent, particularly those reticent to offer flexible working, as many workers are keen to move further afield.

While the amount of movement in the market suggests that it should be easy to recruit new talent, employment rates in the UK are still incredibly high, and with 1.2 million job vacancies to fill, candidates have many options, while companies face significant competition.

What is driving employees to search for new roles?

As you might expect, salary one of the key drivers for employees to consider making a move. Around two fifths of candidates are looking for a better salary package – and a competitive market makes dissatisfied parties more eager to reap the rewards.

However, it isn’t all about salary and remuneration. In line with demand for more human workplaces driven by the pandemic, our recruitment consultants are seeing a new employment trend linked to employee experience. More people than ever are looking at the career progression and training opportunities and benefits attached to new roles – and it is often how they chose between two roles offering the same salary.

How can employers retain and attract new staff?

Employee turnover is a healthy and normal part of any business – the trick is to work out how to retain your best talent. By having an open and honest conversation with your staff to work out their motivations and which pressure points may push them away from your organisation, then addressing those concerns, you may find that you can convince those considering a new role to think again.

Our recruitment consultants have put together five tips for employers who are concerned about workers leaving their business (or attracting new employees), based on their knowledge and experience of the employment market in 2022:

  1. Be flexible on working conditions. Candidates know what they want from their work environment, and if they are determined to work from home, they will likely look for a new role to accommodate that benefit.
  2. Offer clear career progression. When it comes to their career, employees are no longer willing to wait for promotions and pay increases and will move on in search of faster career progression. 
  3. Focus on mental health and wellbeing. Thanks to the pandemic and the associated growing levels of stress and burnout, people are now looking for additional support in the workplace.
  4. Invest in Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) initiatives. In today’s climate conscious society, many UK workers want their employers to take more action on ESG and would be more willing to work for businesses with good credentials.
  5. Offer a competitive salary and benefits package. In many cases, money talks and employers must ensure that their top talent receives a fair salary and benefits package compared to their industry peers. Doing so will allow businesses to keep roles filled, saving money and effort in the long run. You can find out the latest rates in our 2022 Salary Guide.

Unfortunately, it won’t be possible to retain everyone. The Covid-19 pandemic has given a quarter of job-seekers time to re-evaluate their priorities, and 22 per cent are looking to change career path or move into an entirely different field as a result.

With a buzzing employment market, the earlier you can identify those who are looking to move on, the sooner you can put measures in place to prevent a talent shortage in your organisation – as the competition means it can be difficult to secure skilled talent.

If you do need support in your recruitment process, our talent solutions consultants are here to help.

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