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Job Optimism Holds Steady: 1 in 4 Workers Currently Looking for a New Role

  • An additional 24% plan to launch a job search in the coming months

  • Robert Half research reveals common reasons candidates drop out of the hiring process

Research from talent solutions and business consulting firm Robert Half points to more movement in the job market. According to a survey of more than 2,500 workers in the United States, 1 in 4 respondents are currently looking for a new role, and an additional 24% plan to start searching by year-end. The combined percentage (49%) is up three points from December 2022.

Those most likely to make a career move in the remainder of 2023 are:

  • Gen Zers (74%)
  • Technology professionals (64%)
  • Working parents (63%)
  • Employees who have been with their company for two to four years (62%)

Contract work is a viable route for many professionals, with 4 in 10 workers being open to pursuing contract roles.

Job Search Motivators and Deal Breakers

Workers exploring other employment opportunities are motivated by:

  1. A higher salary (55%)
  2. Better benefits and perks (38%)
  3. Remote work options (28%)

These rankings are unchanged from the previous survey. Compensation, benefits and remote work options are also the top elements professionals look for when evaluating job postings.

When applying for an open role, professionals said they’d lose interest and withdraw from consideration due to:

  • Poor communication and follow-up from the hiring manager (52%)
  • Excessive — or more than three — rounds of interviews (40%)
  • A lengthy hiring process (39%)

“The takeaway for employers, especially those facing recruiting challenges, is that skilled workers are willing to make a move for the right opportunity,” said Dawn Fay, operational president of Robert Half. “If you’re not offering competitive pay and benefits and a work culture that promotes employee well-being and professional development, you’re at a big disadvantage. Being efficient and open to negotiating is also critical to landing the best talent.”

Fay added, “While there are plenty of opportunities out there, landing a better-paying position doesn’t guarantee greater job satisfaction. Before making a career move, workers should ask themselves: What are my personal and professional priorities, and what will help me achieve my long-term goals?”