COVID-19 has 'stalled' Canadian jobs – here's why

Your employees want meaningful work – and more money

COVID-19 has 'stalled' Canadian jobs – here's why

Over one quarter of Canadian employees believe their career has stalled since the outbreak of COVID-19, according to new data from Robert Half. Twenty-eight percent of workers claimed they’d also undergone a shift in perception because of the pandemic, opting to try and land a more meaningful and fulfilling role elsewhere.

Speaking to HRD, Koula Vasilopoulos, Robert Half district president, revealed what this research means for national organizations.

“When it comes to the future of Canadian jobs, employers need to ensure that staff retention is a priority right now,” explained Vasilopoulos. “Skilled and driven professionals are apt to make career moves in any environment and that, combined with employees who feel they’ve been let down by their company in the past year and may leave if given the opportunity, has the potential to drive up employee turnover.

“We’re starting to see signs that the market is turning and with that an increase in hiring and promotions with some companies making it a priority to ensure they are set up for success from a talent perspective as the economy rebounds. As business confidence slowly returns, we may see even more companies kick back into hiring mode — and with that workers may begin to explore their options. To avoid key staff departures, which can disrupt productivity, dampen morale and delay business growth, now is the time for employers to put programs into place that are designed to retain their top talent.”

Workers are feeling stuck in their predicaments. According to the research, 62% of employees are fed up with their salary, 42% feel like they’ve had no skills development, and 42% lament the lack of networking. With this in mind, it’s clear to see there’s an employee exodus on the cards, as workers jump ship in search of greener pastures.

So, what should HR leaders do now to stem the inevitable fallout?

“Employees want to feel challenged and appreciated — and they don’t want to be underpaid or stuck in a career rut,” added Vasilopoulos. “Top performers also thrive on being recognized for excellent work and if employers aren’t meeting or exceeding what other companies are paying for similar work, they risk losing their most valued employees.”

Vasilopoulos suggested implementing a more inclusive wellbeing strategy – including additional incentives.

“Offer promotions without raises since employees just starting out in their careers may be more focused on advancement and appreciate a bigger title, even if it doesn’t come with higher pay,” she told HRD. “Discuss career paths by taking the time to understand what each team member aspires to be or do in within the organization, and then helping them set those plans in motion. Finally, reinforce the importance of employees’ work, helping them to see the connection between what they do and the company’s mission and business goals.”

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