Just 14 per cent of laid-off employees relocated for new job this year: Survey

Flexible work arrangements, telecommuting contributing factors

Despite a tough job market, only 14 per cent of laid-off employees relocated to take a new position this year, according to a survey of 7,000 workers in Canada and the United States by Right Management.

“Growing popularity in working virtually and the fact that many companies are embracing flexible work models could attribute to why so few employees are relocating in today’s tight employment market,” said Monika Morrow, senior vice-president of career management for Right Management.

There are good reasons why more jobseekers don’t want to relocate, such as conflicting work-life pressures.

“On the one hand there are family issues, kids in school and perhaps an employed partner. On the other there’s the job offer itself, which may be attractive in terms of opportunity and compensation,” said Morrow. “But most jobseekers are just reluctant to pick up and relocate, especially for mid-level managers and professionals.”

Even though the weak job market has compelled individuals to look outside their own area or region for new employment, an individual may be unable to sell a home in a timely manner or at the fair price.

As a rule, a jobseeker will accept a new position that requires a move when the offer is generous or the opportunity compelling, found the survey.

“There are always risks,” said Morrow. “Nevertheless, relocation is a fact of life and a common aspect of the flexibility needed in today’s workforce and the choices individuals make.”

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