At milewalk, we are fully committed to bringing valuable insight to the workforce. Irrespective of your vocation, we believe all companies and individuals can support the growth of our economy. We can help achieve this by elevating awareness of key employment survey results information that will help companies manage their employees more effectively as well as enable individuals to make smart career choices.

Employment Survey Results

Following is the report from our third annual employment survey. The survey was initiated to help provide awareness of key factors that affect our work lives. We thank all participants who provided this information. We also welcome any questions and additional thoughts.

We distributed this survey to over 5,000 individuals with 702 responding. The respondent base included individuals who hold positions within management and information technology consulting firms, software companies, and other prominent organizations.

It was evident from the results that most, but not all, of the sentimental improvements from 2011 to 2012 have held for 2013. Even so, that didn’t prevent 60% of the respondents from interviewing for another job in 2012.

When polled in 2012, we noted that the employee base had been quite mobile in recent years. This most recent survey shows that more than half (54%) have been with their current employer for three years or less.

A noteworthy trend that is holding, however, is that their “happiness quotient” in how they feel about their companies and jobs is relatively steady. In addition, the number of employees that were happy and very happy with their company (61%) and role (64%) were triple the number of unhappy and very unhappy (20% in both cases).

One critical issue that was addressed between 2011 and 2012 that has been completed reversed this year is how dissatisfied employees were with their current level of compensation.  Almost 1 out of 2 employees feel they are underpaid. Specifically, the 13% optimizing that occurred from 2011 to 2012 was exactly reversed.

Another positive shift from 2011-2012 that was met with a reversal for 2012-2013 was the employee’s attitude toward job changing. This year’s data shows an 11% increase from the previous year in those willing to change jobs. It also shows that the employees’ actions are consistent with their sentiment by an increase of 12.4% in those that have actually interviewed with a company other than their own in the last 12 months. For every 100 employees in your company, 60 interviewed somewhere else in 2012.

As we reviewed the employee’s attitude toward critical areas of their current positions and companies, career development opportunity once again nudged the management team as the most disappointing. Even so, when we evaluated which criteria would lead the charge as they turned to new opportunities, (once again) compensation, culture, and role (in that order) reigned as the top three. The most noteworthy change from last year is that the already number one criteria moving forward–compensation–eased a bit.

One additional perplexing item related to looking to the future is that employee’s seem to place little value on one of the most critical reasons why they leave their current job–their boss.  milewalk captures historical insight related to why our candidates are open to changing jobs. 80% cite their boss as one of the top three reasons. Even so, this criterion falls to the bottom when evaluating their next employment option.

As the employees turn to evaluate the market, they will lean heavily on their personal networks (97.3% indicating so). That is a great sign for organizations that rely heavily on employee referrals to grow. Much like last year, 81.2% will also turn to executive recruiters. The most notable change is that while 70.5% will use the social sites, we consider the 8% decrease from 2012 a questionable decision considering the fact that employers leverage sites such as Linked In so heavily.

As we turned to the hiring officials and reviewed their assessment of upcoming needs, important criteria for the candidates, proficiency level of their recruiting functions, as well as additional avenues they deploy to fulfill their employment needs, we confirmed the continued upward trend for hiring.  Over 86% of hiring authorities indicated they will be hiring this year. The biggest change from last year is that 53% of those indicated they will add more four or more resources, up from 41.4% for 2012.

With the hiring needs in place, these officials cited “time to fill” as the greatest disappointment. Candidly, we believe that “time to fill” is not the actual issue, but a symptom of a lack of quality candidates (the second most disappointing criteria). Employers simply move more quickly when they have a quality candidate in their recruiting pipeline. Over the last nine years, our historical milewalk statistics indicate a 38.2% greater level of efficiency in these cases.

Interestingly, while 83.7% of the companies are leveraging internal recruiting resources, a significant portion also rely on executive recruiters (46.5%) and independent contractors (27.9%) to supplement those internal functions. The very startling change from 2012 is that there was almost a 10 point drop in firms using their own internal recruiting and a more than 10 point increase in those deploying executive search firms.

As companies interview potential employees, they will favor cultural fit and capabilities and over track record of achievement and specific skill sets. While this has historically been the case, specific skills had become a greater focus in the last few years because the hiring needs have waned. What we are noting in practice is that this shift is becoming greater and organizations are now trying to recruit “best athletes” even if they don’t have the specific skill sets. It is our opinion that this precipitates from the difficulty employers are encountering in their recruiting efforts.

View the full results here.