When is it Time to Look for a New Job?

Catherine Recruiting

Do you have a nagging feeling that something’s not right in your current role? Are you unsure of if it means you should talk things out or move on to something else? It can be difficult to know what to do when you’re in the thick of things. Here are some points to check off for yourself when making your decision.

I don’t necessarily want to leave – but I think things need to change

Sometimes your work issues are easy to solve with some conversation and negotiation with Management. Here is a checklist of things to look out for as well as solutions you can negotiate with your employer:

I’m underpaid or don’t earn enough to invest in myself

  • Negotiate for a fair salary increase
  • Discuss a possible stipend for personal development opportunities

The workload is growing too intense for me to keep up with

  • Discuss the possibility of interns/support staff that could help with some tasks
  • Discuss the possibility of automation where possible

My commute to and from work is cutting into all my free time

  • Negotiate for flexible working hours
  • Discuss the possibility of working remotely

My role isn’t challenging/intellectually stimulating anymore

  • Discuss the possibility of taking on new projects/opportunities

Having these conversations with your employer may help sort out whatever workplace issues you are having, allowing you to flourish where you already are.

Things haven’t changed – I’m thinking about leaving

Sometimes even with negotiating your workplace issues, there are still problems that can’t seem to be resolved. Here are some signs that it’s time to start looking for something else:

I feel like I don’t fit in with the rest of the office/there’s a clear culture difference

You don’t want to have to change who you are to hold onto a role. If you feel like where you work is forcing you to be someone you’re not, it’s time to move on.

I feel like I’m kept in the dark or I’m the last person to know about company changes

This could be a sign that the company is in trouble or that they’re looking for a reason to get rid of people.

There are clear signs that the company is struggling

If it’s clear that the company is facing financial difficulties, ensure that you have your eyes open for other opportunities. It’s best to be prepared and ahead of the game if the company starts retrenching.

My boss seems to know less than me about the work, but their role is secure

At best, this could be a sign that there’s no chance of upward growth. At worst, it could mean that there is some level of corruption at play. Either way, it’s best to find something at a company where everyone is in a role they’re qualified and knowledgeable enough to fill.

I dread going to work and find myself considering calling in sick even when I’m not

This is a sign that you’re in the wrong role or that your work environment is unhealthy. Start looking for something that excites you at a company you feel motivated to be a part of.

My job is making me sick, either psychologically or physically

It’s never worth sticking around a toxic workplace – especially if you’re physically suffering for it. No job is worth your health.

My job description changed suddenly and unrealistically, or I received a bad performance review for seemingly no reason

This could be a sign that the company is looking to get rid of staff. Don’t wait for it to get to the point of retrenchments – start looking for something in the meantime.

My personal life is suffering because of my workload/hours and my employer doesn’t see the issue

A good employer sees the benefit of a healthy work/life balance. If it feels like your personal life is forced to suffer for the sake of the company, it’s probably time to move on.

Every day I find myself looking for what else is out there

This is a sign that you’re not satisfied where you are now. If you’re feeling the pull to get out and look for something new, that’s a sign that it’s time to move on.

In short:

There are times when it’s possible to work with your employer to smooth out your workplace issues. Where possible, you should take advantage of these opportunities. If your employer is willing to hear your concerns and address them with you, it’s a sign that you’re working for a healthy company. If, however, your employer isn’t willing to hear your concerns or it seems like nothing is changing, it’s usually best to move on. Remember that you are replaceable to your company, but you aren’t replaceable to your loved ones. Always make sure that you are prioritising your health and wellbeing.

If you’re looking for something new, register your CV with us and gain access to thousands of SMEs looking for their newest teammate.

For more information on how to kickstart your job search, take at these other great blog posts:

Remember that the right role is out there – it’s just a matter of finding it. 😊