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10 reasons why 28 percent of employees are ready to leave their employer and 6 ways HR Managers can help prevent it : Reports

Several surveys show that employees cite 10 key reasons 28% of employees are planning on leaving their employer in the next year, including: better pay, lack of work-life balance, toxic work environment, toxic bosses, and career change as reasons for leaving their employers. (19 sources cited below.) These reports also cite 6 ways HR Managers and Payroll Managers can retain these employees.

The rise in voluntary exits in companies nowadays is not due to talent competition. According to a study by Monster.com, many of those ready to leave their employer are looking for better pay. Since inflation continues to bite, employees will not hesitate to quit their workplaces to go to companies with better pay. [1]


Leaving your job for better opportunities dreamstime xl 166134666 Pivotal HR Solutions Blog
An employee happily departing from her employer. What are the ten reasons people are planning to leave their employer this year? What are the six ways to prevent it?

Better work options

According to Jobvite, a Job Seeker Nation Report, employees are willing to leave their jobs without another lined up. Even though a recruitment agency will help organizations find top talent, employees will still look for organizations that align with their own needs. [2]

  • Employees find it hard to work in a place with a poor work-life balance and a lack of development opportunities. Despite this, only 47% of employers support employees’ well-being. [3]
Work Life Balance Pivotal HR Solutions Blog
Work-Life Balance is the one of the ten key reasons 28% of employees are planning on leaving their employer this year.


Employees leave when they see no opportunity for growth

Women are leaving their current employers in search of companies that value their worth. This is because they feel their opinions don’t matter even though they may be in higher positions. [4]

In addition to women, Gen Z and millennials are among those looking for more fulfilling job opportunities. They don’t chase the highest salary but want to learn from experience and use what they have learned when needed. [5]

80% of employees don’t think their employers give them growth opportunities, while 49% of employees believe employers should provide them with growth opportunities. A survey of 2000 employees by BetterBuys found that employees that have been provided professional development have a 34% retention rate compared to those without. [6] [7]


Employees leave when there is no work-life balance

Work-life imbalance causes employees to experience anxiety, stress, and depression. This imbalance affects employees’ health and may lead to severe complications if left unchecked.

Still, only 2 in 5 HR management professionals support workers’ mental health. This is according to a Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) report. [8]


Calculating a raise Pivotal HR Solutions Blog
Unsatisfactory remuneration remains a key reason people leave.


Employees leave to look for better pay

Research by Pew Research Center, 63% of employees were ready to quit their employment due to low pay. “Managers should regularly benchmark salaries against those of other companies in their region and industry to ensure they are at or above market standards.” Says Paul McDonald, Senior Executive Director of staffing firm Robert Half. He also said, “While many factors contribute to turnover, competitive pay and benefits can be the difference when it comes to retaining skilled talent.”  [9] [10]

According to a report by Business.com on job experiences, a lack of competitive pay was the biggest motivator for employees seeking employment in other organizations. The report also said that great compensation was the best tactic employers could use to stop employees from leaving. [11]


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Toxic work environments is a top ten reason to leave.


Employees leave because of a toxic work environment

Whenever there are high turnover rates in companies, employers face significant challenges in maintaining productivity, retaining skilled staff, and fostering a positive company culture. And the financial impact of employee turnover can be substantial, with HR recruitment and training costs increasing quickly.

A study by MIT Sloan suggests that a toxic work environment is the number one reason employees leave their jobs. [12]

Experts stress the importance of addressing workplace toxicity to prevent talent drain and its subsequent repercussions. Employers and HR managers should enable and prioritize a healthy and supportive work environment, offer avenues for employees to voice their concerns, and ensure that management takes appropriate action to address issues as soon as they arise.


Workplace agression dreamstime l 193155914 Pivotal HR Solutions Blog
Problems with “the boss” is another top reason for leaving.


Employees leave when they have problems with a manager

According to Udemy, nearly half of employees left their jobs because of a bad manager, while 60% of employees felt that managers need managerial training. [13]

When employees encounter issues with their managers, such as a lack of guidance, support, or mentorship, it impacts employees’ job satisfaction and overall experience within the organization. This often leads to high turnover rates since employees choose to quit their positions rather than continue working in an unfavourable environment.

Also, the report continues to say that when managers display favouritism or bias towards certain employees, it can create a hostile work environment. Employees who perceive unfair treatment may become demotivated and disengaged and ultimately choose to leave the organization for a favourable workplace.


happy to quit dreamstime xl 121899962 Pivotal HR Solutions Blog
An employee happily departs from her employer. What are the ten reasons people are planning to leave their employer this year? What are the six ways to prevent it?


Employees leave when they don’t fit with the company culture

A study by Robert Walters on company culture reveals that 90% of employees are satisfied with their job and are less likely to leave when aligned with the company culture. [14]

Corporate culture matters, says Simo Sinek, author and inspirational speaker. How management chooses to treat its people impacts everything for better or for worse. The report by Robert Waters also shows that 9 out of 10 respondents first researched companies’ cultures of prospective jobs before accepting job offers.

Employees leave when they’re not recognized for a job well done

36% of employees value recognition and consider switching jobs when their efforts are not recognized. When employees are not recognized for a job well done, it can lead to frustration, undervaluation, and a lack of motivation. Failure to recognize employees when their work is outstanding leads to their feeling demoralized, and they may start looking for another job. [15]

Employees leave to companies offering health insurance and employee retirement plans.

46% of employees surveyed in the U.S. considered health insurance to be of utmost importance when choosing their jobs, while 71% were currently satisfied with their employer-provided health coverage. [16]

60% of employees cite retirement benefit plans as the primary reason they remain with their current employers. [17] Since the cost of hiring and onboarding new talent is higher, many employees are slowly offering retirement plans and health insurance to their employees.

Employees leave for companies providing remote work

65% of workers value remote work and the possibility of working remotely may determine whether they will reject or accept a job offer. More workers are willing to accept a lower salary provided they will work remotely.

“People have gotten used to having more autonomy over their work the past two years”, says Nela Richardson, the chief economist at ADP and co-author of the report,  in an interview with CNBC Make It. He added that they can pick up kids from daycare or go to doctor’s appointments without having to ask for time off.

About 71% of younger employees (18 – 24-year-olds) consider looking for other jobs if their companies ask them to return to the office full-time. [18]

What Employees say makes them happy

Research carried out at the contact centers of British telecoms firm BT by Clement Bellet of Erasmus University Rotterdam, George Ward of MIT, and Jan-Emmanuel De Neve of Saïd Business School, University of Oxford, shows that call center workers were happy when they were more productive at work.

A Swarthmore study also showed that happy employees made smarter decisions at work. The study also explained that employees are less anxious and are less fearless, and thus make calculated decisions.

  1. Employers should embrace autonomy

HR management teams should encourage employee autonomy to keep their employees happy. Allowing them to plan their work schedule and deadlines while encouraging remote working options and a hybrid working environment.

  1. Employers should listen to employees and ask for their feedback

Whenever employees are part of the decision-making process, they feel appreciated and happy. But whenever decisions are made without their input, yet they affect the workforce, employees tend to feel left out, leading to a lack of motivation at work.

  1. Employers should encourage career growth and upward mobility

When a company offers opportunities for career growth to its employees, the employees will be motivated to take greater risks that are beneficial to companies, feel challenged to do better, pitch ideas, and improve their skills.

A study by Randstad showed that 73% of employers recognize the importance of career growth. However, only 49% adhere to this practice.

  1. Employers should build a positive environment for employees

94% of executives and 88% of employees believe that a positive work environment is key to a successful business. Therefore, companies are striving to improve transparency to ensure issues are discussed, and negative feelings don’t thrive. [19]

  1. Employers should reward employees

HR management should see to it that employees are appreciated for all the good they do. Whenever employees feel their big or small efforts matter, they will be happy because they value it when they are recognized.

  1. Employees should offer work benefits to their employees.

Employees will stay where they know they get benefits. Hospital insurance policies, and retirement benefit plans, are among the most valued benefits employees look for whenever they are looking for a job.

Summary of Key Points

Employees who feel unappreciated at their workplaces will likely quit in the next 12 months.

Employees want job opportunities that offer them flexibility, which includes working remotely

Employees will quit their work if there is no work-life balance and will do so even without another job offer

Employee benefits, career growth, and recognition matter to employees, and they will quit when their current jobs don’t offer them.



[1] “Monster survey conducted among workers, December 2022”

[2] Jobvite. “2022 Job Seeker Nation Report”

[3] “Workers are leaving, and employers admit they’re not doing enough: A Report by Jim Wilson”


Alexis Krivkovich, Irina Starikova, Kelsey Robinson, Rachel Valentino, Lareina Yee. “Women in the Workplace 2022”

[5] Rob Kingyens. “What Kind Of Jobs Are Generation Z Looking For?”

[6] Monster Job Index: Monster Polls 2021

[7] “The Impact of Professional Development” by BetterBuys

[8] Matt Gonzales. “Fewer Than 1 in 3 Employers View Mental Health Support as a Top Priority”

[9] Kim Parker and Juliana Menasce Horowitz. “Majority of workers who quit a job in 2021 cite low pay, no opportunities for advancement, feeling disrespected”

[10] Stephen Miller, CEBS. “Employees want better pay and benefits”

[11] Sean Peek. “12 Reasons Employees Quit (and How to Prevent It)”

[12] Donald Sull, Charles Sull, and Ben Zweig. “Toxic Culture Is Driving the Great Resignation”

[13] Udemy. “Udemy In Depth: 2018 Employee Experience Report”

[14] Robert Walters. “Three out of four professionals leave when company culture is a mismatch.”

[15] Victor Lipman. “36% Of Employees Say Lack Of Recognition Is Top Reason To Leave Their Job”

[16] AHIP Survey. “Health coverage biggest reason for staying at current job”Health coverage biggest reason for staying at current job 

[17] Stephen Miller. “Benefits Jump as a Reason to Join or Stay with an Employer”

[18] Morgan Smith. “64% of workers would consider quitting if asked to return to the office full-time”\

[19] University of Oxford. “Happy workers are 13% more productive”


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