According to an IIP survey, here are the top five reasons people leave their job.

A survey published by Investors in People (IIP) has revealed that one in three of us are unhappy in our current role and more of us than ever before (59%) are actively looking to move on. 

With the ongoing skills shortage affecting almost every industry, the need for employers to retain their best people has never been greater. While there’s little you can (or should) do to stop an unhappy employee from moving on, being aware of the most common causes of employee dissatisfaction is a huge step towards improving retention rates. 

According to the IIP survey, here are the top five reasons people leave their job. 


With property prices and the cost of living increasing at a rapid rate, it’s not surprising that pay is such an important factor for employees. 

More than half (51%) of jobseekers say that money is their main reason for changing jobs while 47% say that even a slight pay rise would increase their levels of happiness at work. If you’re looking to hold on to staff for as long as possible, ensure that your employees are paid the going rate or even better, slightly more than what you competitors are offering. It’s very rare that someone will move to a job that pays less than what they’re currently earning. 

Bad management 

42% of employees who responded to the IIP survey said that having a bad boss was the main reason they left their job. When asked what constitutes a bad boss, the answers included:

  • Having a negative attitude
  • Ignoring concerns brought up by the team
  • Taking credit for other people’s work

Being undervalued 

A third of people choose to leave their job because they don’t feel they’re valued by their employer. While managers are often quick to tell employees when something hasn’t been done properly, don’t forget to say thank you and recognise someone for a job well done.

Lack of progression 

33% of UK employees say that they want to leave their job because there aren’t any opportunities for them to progress their career with their current employer. Goals and aims have been proven to be strong motivators in the workplace so by not providing your staff with these opportunities, chances are that you will eventually lose your best people. 

Poor work-life balance 

Poor working hours and a lack of flexibility has been cited the fifth most common reason people leave their jobs. 

Obviously there are certain rules and regulations that organisations have to abide by, especially when it comes to safety. If there are occasions where you can relax a bit however, people are going to enjoy their jobs a lot more. 

If you can offer flexible working, this is a fantastic way to keep employees motivated. Contrary to popular belief that they will sit at home watching daytime television, research shows that flexible workforces are actually 30% more productive. Even if it’s just allowing someone to take a longer lunch break so they can get to their doctor appointment, the better the work-life balance is for an employee, the more likely they are to stay with you. 

If you would like help finding your next role or recruiting new talent into your business, get in touch with Alpha and we will be more than happy to help.