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New Year, New Job? Only a Third of Brits Believe their Current Employer Can Make them Successful!


A new UK-wide study from first direct highlights the meaning of success to people across the UK and reveals what they deem as ‘successful’ and important throughout different stages of their lives. The research reveals that just 14% of those aged 18-34 say that having a successful career is unimportant to them. Interestingly, this is still a prevalent statistic even in the older generations with 66% of over 55’s admitting a successful career is still important to them.

According to the findings, the height of our careers should be around our late 20’s/early 30’s with just 10% of Brits believing your 40’s is when we are the most successful within our careers.

Of those who are currently employed, just 34% believe their current employer can provide them with what they need to ever be successful in their career. The reason for this? As you might have guessed, the most popular reason came down to money and unsatisfactory salaries and benefits (44%). However, 35% of respondents revealed that a lack of clear development was the main reason their current employer could not aid their success and 31% said their organisation doesn’t have good employee satisfaction.

So what do employers need to do to retain their staff and help them achieve their career goals? Although based on the above answers, you might think it is a pay increase, those employees who’ve said their current employee DOES offer what they need to be a success attribute this to their organisations good values (61%) and job security/stability.

Job security is the highest measure of career success for Brits

Although the average Brit believes that a pay packet of around £44k is what they would expect at the height of their career, a hefty £18k over the national average (ONS Earnings and working hours), the majority of Brits actually define career success in much more humbling terms:

  • 52% of Brits believe having a stable and secure job is the most important measure of career success
  • 49% define a successful career by simply having a career you love
  • 36% believe success is working for an organisation with good values and 33% employee satisfaction

What does it take to have a successful career?

Worryingly, 14% of brits believe you need to sacrifice relationships in order to have a successful career and 17% believe it is your social life that takes the biggest hit. Nearly 1 in 5 (18%) believe your hobbies and interests are those you sacrifice in order to have a successful career and nearly 1 in 10 (9%) believe your pride is often sacrificed to be a success in your career.