A Third of European Employees Still Actively Looking for Alternative Jobs

In the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic, European organizations experienced a wave of resignations in early 2021, dubbed by some as "The Great Resignation." The Future of Work European Employee Survey from IDC found that, one year later, almost one-third (32%) of European employees are actively looking for alternative employment. At a time of labor shortages and recruitment challenges, this is troubling news for European organizations.

A clear disconnect exists between employers and employees in defining what makes a good working experience. Managers are prioritizing tech investments to enable hybrid work, while employees worry about declining company culture. Upgrades of collaboration technologies and facilitating secure hybrid work top the list of concerns for IT decision-makers, while staff fears the way their work is assessed and a lack of connectedness. Despite this, 25-30% of hybrid workers are not satisfied with the tech provided by their company.

Employee experience has become a key factor for organizations in terms of attracting new talent and retaining existing employees. While better pay is the number one factor supporting employee attrition, IDC’s survey shows that an unfulfilling employee experience is the second major cause of employee churn. The survey also demonstrated a massive difference in attrition risk between those employees with satisfying employee experience and those without. In a transformed labor market, employee working conditions and overall happiness have become key factors for organizations that want to minimize resignations.

"A continuing focus on technology as a one-stop solution to improve employee experience is problematic, as remote employees primarily struggle with cultural experience disparity," says Meike Escherich, associate director, European Future of Work at IDC. "Successful flexible work models rely on a shift away from the old in-office ethos of command and control toward a culture of employee enablement."

European organizations can reduce their labor shortage headaches significantly by focusing on the aspects of employee experience where the shortfalls are. And the HR function and HR technologies can play an important role in improving the employee experience. “Our survey also highlighted employee experience shortfalls related to company culture and leadership… but even in such fundamental areas, HR management can help facilitate change and measure progress,” says Ivan Oz, senior research analyst, European Software Research.

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