Two-thirds of ICT staff looking for new jobs

Two-thirds of ICT staff looking for new jobs

Salary is top reason for the move, but workplace flexibility is high on the list for prospective employees.

Job churn in the ICT sector remains high with more than one-third of employees looking to move overseas and up to two thirds looking for new jobs in New Zealand, according to the latest sector employee intentions survey. Data from the six-monthly absoluteIT Employee Intentions Report Jan/Feb 2011confirms an ongoing trend in employee restlessness revealed in 2010 surveys, driven mainly by remuneration, career challenge and lifestyle.

“The latest statistics are consistent with the past 18 months, with a significant number of employees actively looking for new opportunities both within New Zealand and offshore,” says absoluteIT director Grant Burley.

A total of 2381 respondents took part in the electronic survey throughout December 2010 and January 2011.

Burley says salary is increasingly important as a key motivator for moving on, particularly for employees seeking to work overseas.

“We’re seeing salary as a motivator more than doubling over the past six months rising from 23 percent in July to more than 53 percent now.

“So it’s not surprising that Australia is increasingly the most popular destination of choice with its promise of higher-salaries. The trans-Tasman pull has increased by around 5 percent since July, now favoured by up to 50 percent of respondents.”

absoluteIT says the Australian median base package of $91,560 includes 9 percent superannuation compared to this country’s $80,000 median base package with an optional 2 percent superannuation provided here by employers.

The other main reasons for moving offshore are lifestyle (50 percent) and career development (49 percent).

Local job churn also remains high with 67 percent of employees actively looking for new work, similar to 2010 figures.

The main reasons for moving on are desire for a change, skills not being utilised, lack of career progression and low salary.

Burley says the dwindling talent pool and rising employer hiring intentions meant it was increasingly difficult for to access key skill sets such as software developers.

“Most employers are struggling to attract and retain talent by increasing salaries and financial benefits. Our October salaries survey showed only a minimal overall salary increase of around 1 percent along with a slight reduction in benefits for permanent employees since April 2010.

“However, where employers can respond to what employees are looking for is in non-financial areas - namely workplace flexibility.”

The company’s previous two surveys show workplace flexibility is the most valued, non-financial benefit an employer can offer. Burley says while nearly a third of employees here enjoy a flexible work arrangement - almost double what is offered in Australia - New Zealand employers need to do more.

He says employers who want to get the best talent and keep it should invest in the latest remote access technologies, and talk to staff about the company’s flexible working hours policy.

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