The Working Smarter series: finding your best fit

Career advice

18 March 2022

The 'Working Smarter' series explores the shift in working patterns throughout and beyond Covid-19, focusing on the impacts for employers, employees and candidates. We look at how these groups can exploit trends to reap fantastic opportunities, business growth and development.

Much has been reported on the 'Great Resignation', that is, the trend of employees leaving their roles en-masse after two years of Covid-19 lockdowns and forced remote-working for millions.

While researchers from The Economist cast doubt on the record-breaking nature of job-leavers and seekers, their statistics do display evidence of vacancies in the UK being high, at 50% above the average before the pandemic, relative to the size of the labour force. Other research published by Slack on The HR Director found in a survey of 100 UK workers, almost a third (29%) reported that they were considering moving to a new job this year.

The data undeniably shows people in the UK are seeking pastures new, and opportunities are aplenty right now for those on the look-out for a new opportunity.

It's a candidates market

Whether that's an investment in your skills development through applying for an apprenticeship role, or by stretching your worth further and applying for a more senior opportunity, now could be the time to invest in your future and stop putting off building your dream career. Why wait for the candidate's market to shift? Liz Riley, Recruitment Manager at Impact Futures, comments on why the time to explore a new career could be now:

"I count myself as one of the many that came under the "Great Resignation" story. I had been in a role for over 4 years, had reached my ‘ceiling’ and development and pay-rises were out of the question. I felt downcast, burnt-out and completely unmotivated. I updated my CV and started looking for new opportunities.

The job market was enormous, the landscape had certainly changed from how it was 4 years ago. I found I actually had the luxury of being able to be 'picky' with jobs! I lined up three interviews, was offered all three roles and was in the very rare position of having choice. Whilst this is not a luxury afforded by many, it felt liberating! I felt valued, that someone could see my worth. 5 months down the line in my chosen role and I can safely say… I regret nothing!

Companies find themselves in a difficult position right now. There is a battle for talent, but there is also the more important issue of talent retention. My message to candidates – if you feel unrecognised, shop around. This is your time!"

Finding the culture that fits

"Culture eats strategy for breakfast"- Peter Drucker

There are also things that money can't buy. The shift in working practices have opened workers' eyes to more flexible and rewarding work cultures that prioritise work-life balance and offer more in terms of staff benefits, rewards and professional development investment, and are turning them away from roles that breed poor work-life balance, mental health problems and burnout. Liz comments on what to look out for when exploring a new role:

"Culture culture culture! Read up on the company you are apply to before firing your CV over to them. Have a look at their socials. Do they have a good Christmas party, do they celebrate their staff, what are the benefits on offer? Do the benefits indicate a healthy work-life balance, generosity and care for their staff? Is there development available, can you progress from the role you are applying for, is there a clear promotion line?

Never be afraid to ask these questions in an interview! Interviews are a two way street – you sell yourself but the employer needs to sell themselves too."

"Here at Impact Futures, our company values are loud and proud and there for all to see. We don't have half-measure statements about how we're a "great place to work". Ask any of our staff what our values are and they know them like the back of their hand, because we implement and live by our values.

Every direction we go in as business, every decision we make, every interaction we have is led by our culture and values. We believe in work-life balance, we reward and recognise hard work, we invest in the development of our people, and we support every single one of our employees."

Feeling suitably inspired to take on a new adventure in 2022?  Explore our vacancies today.


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