Page last updated at 12:24 GMT, Tuesday, 23 February 2010

Resignations among managers 'rise despite downturn'

Job centre in Glasgow
People are prepared to resign without a job to go to, says the CMI

More managers resigned from their jobs in the past year than in the previous 12 months, despite the economic downturn, research has suggested.

The Chartered Management Institute (CMI) found 4.7% of individuals covered by its annual survey resigned, compared with 4.5% last year.

Some 225,600 managers quit their jobs in the year to the end of January.

The survey also suggests the average salary rise was 2.5% over the period, with large imbalances across the UK.

With an average increase of 3.2%, managers in Scotland and the north east of England enjoyed the biggest pay rises during the downturn.

Those in East Anglia, with an increase of 1.2%, received the smallest rises.

Employee engagement

CASE STUDY
Paul Forster-Jones, Clarity dtp
Paul Forster-Jones left a job managing 5,000 people to run a start-up with fewer than 10

"I had a million pound budget but the final straw was when it took six weeks to get a new desk signed off.

I was a big fish but it can become a treadmill, with someone else working the speed control.

Three weeks ago I started my new job with Clarity dtp, an internet business which enables drug manufacturers to supply direct to pharmacies.

At the age of 52, I've spent most of my life in corporate organisations, and this is a chance to do something exciting."

The CMI's National Management Salary Survey said junior managers got £21,876 a year on average, while "team leaders" received £43,119.

The CMI said job insecurity and restructuring, rather than pay, were the main reasons why staff resigned.

"The evidence is that during times of recession people get itchy feet. This is when they start looking at the job columns," Ruth Spellman, chief executive of the CMI, told BBC Radio 5 live.

She warned that firms need to consider employee engagement. "You need a proper retention strategy," she said. "Most companies only think about it when people walk out of the door."

Jumping ship

Paul Forster-Jones, a former director with a pharmacy company, quit his job to run a start-up company.

"I had a million pound budget but the final straw was when it took six weeks to get a new desk signed off," he said.

"At the age of 52, I've spent most of my life in corporate organisations, and this is a chance to do something exciting."

Glen Braganza left his job in financial services last summer. He felt his firm's response to the recession was "ruthless" and worsened the atmosphere at work, so he "jumped ship".

He spent six months out of work, some of which he spent travelling in India and China. He has now gone back to working in the same sector as a private consultant, which he says gives him more control.

"The recession made the decision more difficult," he said, "But it made me realise it's not all about career. I would absolutely do same thing again and be more confident about it."

Recruitment problems

The CMI also said that its members were finding it hard to recruit staff, despite the latest figures showing that UK unemployment currently stands at 2.47 million.

Filling vacancies is a problems for 46% of firms, with 77% saying they cannot get people with the skills they want.

Recruitment industry body the Recruitment and Employment Confederation said that their members had also found recruitment was taking longer than it used to.

They suggested this was because some people were less willing to move jobs, and that firms who hired fewer people tended to be more selective.



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