Almost four out of ten workers in Belgium (37%) are considering a career change within the next 12 months, according to a survey by HR services provider Acerta and job board StepStone, published on Tuesday.
Meanwhile, 45% of the surveyed people said they have applied for a new job at least once in the past six months, up from 34% during the first lockdown a year ago, when job mobility in Belgium plunged to its lowest level in a decade.
“Companies should be aware of the fact that employees are not paralysed by uncertainty and that they dare to take their chances elsewhere, and they will have to be vigilant in order to retain their best talents,” said Nele Ronsmans, Acerta expert in talent and development.
Among the 3,000 respondents to the survey, 20% said they wanted a complete switch, and are looking for a different job in another sector, while 13% were aiming for a similar job or to move to another level within their sector (4%).
General optimism about the chances of finding a new job has increased as well: 46% now expect to quickly find another job, which is at least as good as their current position, if they are looking to change career or role.
Meanwhile, the survey found that the option to telework has become a key element in job applications: 58% of workers take it into account when choosing a new employer, whilst employees who were not given the opportunity to work from home in the past year applied for jobs more often (68%) than those who were given that opportunity (30%).
Workers who had to go to the office a lot during the pandemic are also more likely to consider switching sectors (63% compared to 44%).
“Companies know what to bet on, even after the coronavirus crisis. Hybrid work, a combination of work at home and work at the office, is the future,” said Ronsmans.