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The question on employees’ lips


10th September 2012

The question on employees’ lips: should I stay or should I go?

A recent survey from SEEK New Zealand has revealed that Kiwis like to change their jobs regularly with 51% of people starting their most recent role less than two years ago, while almost half of those surveyed (43%) are planning to jump ship to a new job within the next 12 months.

And with only 16% of people intending to stay in their current role for the next five years, it appears length of service at a company could be a thing of the past.

Janet Faulding, SEEK New Zealand General Manager, says regardless of the length of time an employee stays in one role, there can be equal benefits in being loyal to one company compared to changing roles frequently across a number of different companies.

“The varied CVs of those who move from company to company more quickly than others can be read as an example of their ability to learn and adapt, to be resilient and to be more proficient at networking. On the other hand, longer tenure in roles can indicate stickability and commitment, which is also a valuable asset to have,” says Ms Faulding.

James Logan, company director at Energy Efficient Solutions (EES), a heating specialist business based in Auckland, says that commitment to one company is a key factor he considers when employing new staff.

Despite being a relatively young company, most EES employees have stuck with the company since they started.

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Mr Logan says, “Fundamentally, our employees all possess some skill set and ambition but we’d rather hire loyal staff, rather than those with a variety of experience.”

Ewen Bell, practice manager at Datacom NZ, an IT services company with 4,000 employees which operates in New Zealand, Australia and Asia, says there is no ideal length of time for an employee to stay within a company.

“There can often be sound reasons why someone may spin out of a job in less than two years - anything from redundancy, the company being financially shaky or the role not being the one they were sold,” says Mr Bell.

“When recruiting new employees, we’re comfortable with an applicant having spent a couple of years in a role before moving on. We do however put a lot of effort into providing a work environment that simply allows our people to get on with it and do the best they can. There is any number of people in our team that started as graduates 8 – 10 years ago, and who are still happily ensconced in Datacom.”

For those who are contemplating whether or not to stick it out in their current role, or move to greener pastures, Ms Faulding has this advice:

“If you do have a higher number of shorter stints under your belt, make sure your CV outlines how you’ve substantially contributed to each relevant company that you’ve worked for. It also helps if you have one great achievement from your time at each company to discuss in your next job interview.”


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