Nearly one-half of U.S. employees believe career growth has stalled: Survey

Offering promotions, bonuses tops the list of best ways to boost engagement
||Last Updated: 08/24/2012

Nearly one-half of United States workers believe the economy has negatively impacted their career, found a recent survey by Randstad.

Forty-three per cent of workers believe their careers have slowed down and it will be harder and will take more time to achieve career growth. One-half of employees also believe the only way to help grow their careers is to switch to a new company, found the Randstad Engagement Index which surveyed 3,000 U.S. workers.

Yet, while many employees feel they have lost ground, the majority of U.S. workers remain engaged at work and report mostly positive attitudes towards their current jobs and employers. Three-quarters (75 per cent) feel inspired to do their best and 66 per cent feel that their efforts are valued and recognized. Yet, the number of workers reporting plans of exploring other job options rose by six per cent (51 per cent in the second quarter versus 45 per cent in the first quarter), found the survey.

“U.S. workers have been committed to their jobs during the last few years, but companies will lose top talent now if they don’t address employees’ fears around stalled career growth due to the economy,” said Jim Link, managing director of HR for Randstad U.S. “Employers need to examine career development options for their employees before workers begin exploring a career catch-up with a new company. At that point, it’s often too late and employers lose solid performers because they weren’t in-tune with their career needs and goals.”

Just over one-third (36 per cent) of employees indicate the most important activity for ongoing engagement is offering promotions or bonuses to high-performing employees. Also topping the list of the most important engagement activities are:

•providing a comfortable and stimulating work environment (30 per cent)

• encouraging employees to share their ideas and opinions (28 per cent)

•investing in employees’ careers through training, professional development or continuing education (28 per cent).

“Companies today need to realign their retention and engagement programs to focus on which activities will make the biggest impact,” said Link. “Even the most engaged employees are evaluating their career paths and determining their personal career growth strategies.”

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