Aussie workers looking to North America ‘where they see innovation’

by Chloe Taylor02 Dec 2015
New research has suggested that Australian businesses could suffer, as they face the risk of losing employees to a lack of progression and relocation opportunities.

The research was conducted by Morgan McKinley, and surveyed 1,000 professionals.

Half of the respondents cited lack of career progression as their main motivation for leaving a job.

When defining ‘career progression’, 55% of participants said that the overall package they were offered was the most significant factor, while a quarter said that being given more responsibility would show them they were advancing.

Researchers also found that the majority of those surveyed did not feel satisfied in their current positions, with 55% of respondents looking to leave their current role within the next year.

According to the survey, more than half of Australian workers would consider a job opportunity overseas.

Around a third of the respondents said they would choose to relocate to the US or Canada, while the most popular choice in Asia was Singapore followed by Hong Kong.

“The fact that most Australian workers would opt to relocate to the US or Canada, given the choice, is very interesting,” Louise Langridge, joint managing director of Morgan McKinley, told HC.

“There’s been a bit of a shift in the last few years – before this, the UK or Europe would have been up there.

“The prevalence of digital and agile companies as seen in places like the Silicon Valley has led to a lot more workers around the globe looking to the US, where they are seeing more innovation.”

While relocation opportunities were found to be a strong retention tool, Langridge noted that it wasn’t the only factor employees recognised as a sign of career progression.

“Our research showed that people were open to relocation, but it isn’t something that they absolutely have to have,” she told HC.

“Employers should focus on having a good proposition locally, as well as holding open conversations with their staff about what they are looking for in terms of career progression.”

Langridge added that these issues are vital if organisations want to maintain a competitive edge as employers.

“The Australia-wide talent shortage makes this a real area that organisations need to think about,” she said.

“There are lots of opportunities for talented individuals, and if they are not happy and feel they don’t have any opportunity for career progression, we are seeing them look elsewhere.”

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