Mercer: 42% of satisfied workers are leaving their job

02 December 2015

Almost half (42%) of very satisfied workers are planning to leave their job, a survey from Mercer shows. Especially Millenials and Senior Managers, who both among the most satisfied employees, are eyeing an exit. According to the consulting firm, companies will need to adjust their talent strategies to reflect the new ways of working people want today in order to retain their employees.

Global health, wealth and career consultancy Mercer recently released the results of its 'Inside Employees’ Minds' research, for which the consulting firm surveyed a total of 3,010 US workers, 18+ years old, never retired, working full time or part time at for-profit organisations.

Eyeing an exit

The survey shows that 37% of US employees are currently seriously considering leaving their job, a number that is up from 33% in 2011. Especially the millennial generation is eyeing an exit, as almost half (44%) wants to move on to another job. According to Patrick Tomlinson, North American Business Leader for Talent at Mercer, this derives from the ‘here and now’ philosophy these Millennials bring to their careers. Older workers, who are 65+ or within the 50-64 age group, are least likely to plan an exit, at 14% and 29% respectively. 

According to Mercer, the number of people wanting to leave is even higher among very satisfied people. Of the employees very satisfied with their organisations as many as 45% want to leave, while of the people very satisfied with their job 42% is looking to leave.

US workers seriously considering leaving

Senior managers, of all ages, are most likely to seek new opportunities. In this rank, as many as 63% are seriously considering to leave their job, compared to 39% of managers and 32% of non-management employees.

This is interesting as the survey reveals that senior managers also tend to be the most satisfied. 93% is satisfied with their job, around 20% higher than average of 72%, and 94% with their organisation, compared to the 68% average. Almost nine out of ten (88%) senior managers, for instance, would recommend their organisation to others, while the percentage drops to 66% for management employees and to 50% on the non-management level.

Senior management more satisfied

“The survey confirms what employers have been seeing first-hand — a workforce in transition and, increasingly, one on the move,” comments Tomlinson on the survey results. “The new twist is that the inclination to leave is increasingly detached from employees’ satisfaction with jobs, pay, and even growth opportunities. Employers need to shift their talent strategies to understand the modern terms of engagement from the most productive employees.” According to him, “the future of successful work relationships between employer and employee will depend on depend on the trifecta of health, wealth and career — and how you make them all flexible to reflect the way people want to work today and what they are looking for in the employment relationship.”