Growing number of people regret career moves, claims Gartner research

career movesNearly 60 percent of candidates who recently made career moves report that they would still make the same choice, according to a poll from Gartner. The survey of more than 1,800 candidates conducted in June 2022 claims that candidates who reported they would repeat an offer decision reached a peak of 83 percent in 2021, after increasing steadily in 2019 (60 percent) and 2020 (70 percent), before decreasing dramatically this year. The same survey suggests that nearly half of surveyed candidates say they are still open to other offers, while 28 percent say if they had to make the decision again, they would stay at their previous employer.

“Not only are candidates keeping their options open, but they are more likely to back out of offers after accepting,” said Jamie Kohn, director in the Gartner HR practice. “Our June survey of over 3,600 candidates found that 44 percent of respondents had backed out after accepting an offer, compared to 36 percent in 2019.”

Gartner’s survey found that among the more than 3,600 candidates, one-quarter reported their reason for seeking a new role was feeling unappreciated in their current job. Candidates also said they started exploring new job opportunities due to believing they could command better compensation elsewhere (25 percent) and feeling burned out in their current role (25 percent).

“Job changes appear to be motivated more by negative experiences with the current job than by the perception of opportunity elsewhere,” said Kohn.

However, once candidates start looking elsewhere, they have high expectations. Of the 1,600 candidates who said they have backed out after accepting an offer, 46 percent said they did so because they received a better offer.

“Competition for talent remains fierce with candidates still coming to the table with multiple offers –one in three candidates have turned down multiple offers during their recent job search,” continued Kohn.


New priorities

Of the 3,600 candidates Gartner surveyed, 59 percent said they would be willing to forego a job with 10 percent higher pay for a job with better work-life balance. Fifty-three percent of surveyed candidates reported they would forego 10 percent higher pay for either a more interesting career path or more opportunities to learn new skills.

Another consideration for candidates is flexibility – 86 percent of candidates who can work remotely now, whether hybrid or fully remote, prefer to work remotely more than 50 percent of the time. Nearly half say they would forego 10 percent higher pay for flexibility in where they work.

“Though candidates may prioritize certain aspects of work over pay, companies should still be transparent about pay in job postings,” added Kohn. “Nearly 50 percent of candidates stated they have decided not to apply to a role in the past 12 months because the job description did not include the salary.”