7 points to consider when changing jobs

With research showing that people change jobs an average of 12 times over the course of their lifetime, it’s common to go through stages of disliking your work and wanting to jump ship. But how can you tell when it’s time to really search for something new?

With research showing that people change jobs an average of 12 times over the course of their lifetime, it’s common to go through stages of disliking your work and wanting to jump ship. But how can you tell when it’s time to really search for something new?

It’s important to first figure out why you want to move and then take a moment to review your priorities. What’s more crucial to you in a role: salary, colleagues that you get along with, development opportunities or a healthy work-life balance? Your goal should be to find a job which ticks most of your boxes and gets you excited to go to work in the mornings. While it may seem like the grass is always greener, it’s important to weigh up the pros and cons before accepting a new position.

1. Salary: show me the cheddar

Money, money, money – it makes the world go around right? A survey undertaken by Glassdoor in 2018 showed how much individuals put precedence on salary when it revealed that 67% of job seekers looked at pay rates before applying for a position. If you’re thinking of changing jobs because you want to be paid more, it’s first worthwhile exploring what you should be earning.

Make sure you research salary expectations for your role by looking at what people in your field, with your level of experience and with your qualifications are usually paid. This will help you gain an idea of whether you’re currently being underpaid or well compensated. Even though earning some decent dosh is obviously very important, it shouldn’t remain the be all and end all of why you look for a new job. Speak to your current employer, voice your concerns and see if there’s room for a pay rise before seeking alternative employment.

2. Benefits and perks: reaping those rewards

Salary seems to be a strong motivating factor for people to leave their current company however, a potential employer’s benefits and perks are also worth considering when exploring new job opportunities. When asked what would make them more likely to apply for a job, 48% of workers mentioned attractive benefits and perks. It’s important to weigh up everything offered in the compensation package such as superannuation, maternity leave policy, vacation days or health insurance policy, when comparing roles.

3. Development opportunities: a budding flower

Do you have room to climb the corporate ladder at your workplace? Do they offer training and development for the future? Opportunities to grow and learn are essential for your career in the long run and it’s important to have an employer that supports your professional development.

Be tactical and think long-term when comparing your current company against a potential employer. Which one offers a more clearly defined career path? Also see if the company has opportunities like training, tuition reimbursement and the ability to attend industry events, as this will show you whether they put an emphasis on employee growth.

4. Work-life balance: 9 – 5, what a way to make a living

Most people want to have a job that allows a balanced lifestyle, and for good reason. Working is essential (unless you’re the child of a billionaire) but your family, friends and health are more important. If you’re looking to find a new role because you’re currently working long hours or expected to answer calls and emails on your days off, make sure you ask the right questions in your interview, or to the recruiter, to find out what the culture is like at the new company. You should work to live, not live to work.

5. Workplace culture: your second family

The atmosphere of your working environment is essential to your happiness and comfort during work hours. If you don’t fit in with your colleagues, the company values don’t sit well with you, or the office has outdated equipment, all of these things can affect your productivity and sense of enjoyment at work.

If you go for an interview, try to scope out the environment and your potential new colleagues. Ask your interviewer if they can give you a quick tour around the office, that way you’ll be able to get a general feel for the place. If people seem happy and relaxed, that’s a good indicator of a positive work setting.

6. Commute: location, location, location

If you’re thinking of moving to a different city or suburb for a dream job, ensure you have researched the location of the office and where you’re potentially going to live before accepting the offer. Commuting times can affect your overall health and wellbeing so ideally, you want to make sure you’re within a half hour commute time to the office. A study developed in the UK found that those who commuted to work in under half an hour gained an additional seven days’ worth of productive time each year. It also revealed that individuals with longer commutes are 33% more likely to suffer from depression and 37% more likely to have financial worries.

If living close to your new office isn’t possible due to financial or personal reasons, there are other ways to combat that long commute. Try to find a company that offers to work from home capability or flexibility with start and finish times.

7. Management: don’t rain on my parade

Seeing as you spend more time with your colleagues than you do your own family, it’s important that you have a good working relationship with those people. Especially your manager, as they can strongly influence your working environment and how much you enjoy your job. Managers should help to nurture and mentor you however, there are many “nightmare” bosses out there who can cause issues.

There are numerous reasons why someone would want to leave, such as not getting along with your boss, feeling like you’ve been unfairly treated, feeling disrespected or undervalued, or feeling left out of social engagements. If you’ve gone through the steps of trying to resolve issues in your current role and nothing has worked, then it’s probably time to look elsewhere. Get to know your future boss during the interview process, ask what they look for in a worker and what their management style is. You should be able to tell within the first 15 minutes whether you have a rapport with someone.

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