Preventing the Great Resignation from reaching Kiwi shores

Insurer survey looks at the factors that can help prevent an exodus from jobs

Preventing the Great Resignation from reaching Kiwi shores

Insurance News

By Gabriel Olano

As the Great Resignation continues to sweep across the world in the COVID-19 pandemic’s third year, Southern Cross Health Insurance conducted a survey that may help uncover how Kiwi businesses can prevent employees from leaving en masse.

The participants, who came from a wide range of sectors, were asked to share the best things about their job, as well as indicate their job satisfaction, including how those feelings might have changed since the pandemic began.

Almost half of respondents (46%) said they feel grateful to have their job, with this figure slightly higher for female respondents at 49%, compared to men at 41%. The sense of gratitude was highest among workers in the education and training (63%) and healthcare and social assistance (49%) sectors.

However, only 35% of those surveyed said they enjoy going to work most days. Job enjoyment was most common for those working in education and training (55%) while people employed in manufacturing ranked lowest out of all industries (24%). Southern Cross noted that men (15%) are more likely than women (7%) to say they already have their dream job.

When asked about the best thing about their job, respondents ranked a more supportive work culture higher than aspects like pay and flexibility. Roughly one in three respondents (34%) said a supportive employer or team was the best part of their job, while 30% said their work colleagues feel like friends or family. These sentiments were higher among female workers, with 38% of women valuing a supportive environment compared to 26% of men.

Nick Astwick, CEO of Southern Cross Health Insurance, said the survey sheds light on what New Zealand businesses are doing right when it comes to employee satisfaction, but it also shows the challenges that lie ahead.

“There’s been many reports of a significant wave of people overseas reassessing their jobs in the face of the ongoing effects of the pandemic, and New Zealand businesses have an opportunity to prioritise how to prevent the same from happening here,” Astwick said. “Businesses already have difficulty filling roles in a tight labour market, and this will only get worse if they have large numbers of unhappy employees silently looking to move on. There is also a huge risk that New Zealand will lose a large swathe of young people, and the upwardly mobile, who want to move overseas after two years of closed borders.”

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