24 June 2021

Five signs it’s time to start looking for your next job

We’ve all heard of the term ‘job for life’, yet how realistic is that? While the idea of leaving school/university and finding yourself working in just one organisation, which allows you to progress to your fullest potential, sounds great, these opportunities are today rare. Even within workplaces such as the military and civil service that are traditionally associated with the idea, it’s not like it used to be.

A typical person entering the UK workplace today will average six different jobs at six companies before they retire. Companies today expect a certain degree of employee turnover and workers who do move around often progress more in their careers. It is therefore in your own best interests to move companies and roles when the time is right. But just how can you tell if the time is right? Here are five of the tell-tale signs you need to find work elsewhere to progress your career.

1. Monday blues

Get that feeling of elation watching the minutes tick away on Friday afternoon, only to come down with feelings of crushing ennui by the same time on Sunday? If this sounds like you, it’s a sure-fire way of knowing that it’s time to start looking for your next job. Even if your job pays well and there are opportunities to progress, if you can’t stand your job, it’s unlikely you’re going to be performing to your highest standard.

We work better when we enjoy our jobs, it’s as simple as that. This means that sticking with a job you hate is ultimately holding you back, so it’s likely at some point you’ll slip up or burn out and no one wants that. Remember it is far better to leave on a high than a low.

2. Boredom

Some people are excellent at their job, hyper-efficient and have streamlined their workflows to allow them to outperform their colleagues. But the problem? Often these workers can quickly become bored to absolute tears.

While we might think that some jobs are intrinsically boring, if you previously enjoyed your work but lately the tedium has set in, it probably means you’re ready to accept the next challenge and move on to greater things. Whether that means staying at your current career level but working on larger scale projects, or by accepting more responsibilities and climbing the next rung of the career ladder.

3. Stress

According to the HSE: “In 2019/20 there were an estimated 828,000 workers affected by work-related stress, depression or anxiety. This represents 2,440 per 100,000 workers and results in an estimated 17.9 million working days lost.” We all experience stressful situations in our working lives, that’s normal. What is not normal is stress being your prevailing state of mind while working.

There are many reasons that you might feel stressed all the time, such as being overworked, underappreciated, or knowing that you don’t have the support you need to do your job. Whatever it is, if you don’t feel like the situation will ever change it’s time to look for that next opportunity.

4 Limited progression

You might like your job, enjoy spending time with your colleagues and your company’s work culture. However, there may not be opportunities within the organisation for you to fulfil your ambitions. It could be a small company where you’ve reached the highest echelon, or you could have been waiting for years for that person above you to retire.

The trouble with this situation is that often workers sit in hope for years that soon an opportunity will arise within their organisation, and they will get the chance to progress their career, only to look back much later and realise how much time they have wasted. If you feel like you’re ready to climb the corporate ladder it’s far better to look for existing vacancies elsewhere than it is to lay waiting in hope of hypothetical ones with your current employer.

5. You have thought about leaving

Finally, deep down we usually know when it’s time to leave. If you’re questioning whether now is the best time to start looking for another job, it probably is. Often things like interview anxiety, uncertainty, or procrastinating updating our CV stop us from moving on when really, we know it’s what we have got to do.

Looking for help finding your next job?

No matter where you are in your career, it can never harm to find out if there are better opportunities out there. Get in touch to find out if Hunter Selection could help you find the job of your dreams.