The modern workplace has encountered a seismic shift in attitudes and priorities from employees, accelerated significantly by the Covid-19 pandemic, business lockdowns and the rapid transition to greater flexibility and remote working.

In order to fully understand the new professional landscape, PageGroup conducted a global survey with 70,000 respondents. The Talent Trends survey found evidence for a number of distinct changes in employee expectations, which will have an influence on hiring strategies in the years ahead.

To deep dive into these findings, we hosted a webinar with commentary from several PageGroup recruitment experts to help viewers implement key action points and to refine strategies going forward.

Hosted by:

Doug Rode, Managing Director UK & Ireland, PageGroup


  • Kyra Cordrey, Head of Page Consulting
  • Alex Hall, Managing Director, Page Outsourcing UK

Some of the key topics discussed in the webinar - and in the full Talent Trends survey report - include:

  • How employers should adapt to this shift in employee mindset
  • The move away from loyalty among the UK workforce
  • Improving work-life offerings to appeal to top talent

We look in detail at the 'Work-Life Equation' and what it means for hiring managers and talent retention programmes. The webinar ended with a live Q&A session in which our experts responded to audience questions, which is included in full in the video.

For instant access to the complete recording of this insightful webinar, and to benefit from the action points for your own hiring strategy, register your details today.

The complexity of modern workforce dynamics

With the influence of the pandemic accelerating the already emerging transition towards flexible working, cloud and remote access to resources and employees' ambitions for a better work-life balance, there has never been a more complex time for workforce dynamics.

Talent Trends 2023 aims to decipher this complexity with the world's most comprehensive and robust research into white-collar personnel. About 70,000 people in 167 countries took part in the survey, and in this webinar the panel focused specifically on the UK findings.

In particular, Doug began with a quick poll of the live audience and found that only one in three viewers correctly identified that just 14% of UK workers are not currently open to the possibility of changing jobs.

He added: "Taking it another way, you've got 86% of people that are open to a move at any one time, which is quite a number."

More key Talent Trends findings

Talent Trends 2023 found that 50% of people describe themselves as "active jobseekers" with an intention to change jobs within the next six months, and 41% were actively looking for their next job at the time of the survey.

While this number is down from 48-50% in 2020-21, it's still higher than the 35% seen pre-pandemic, and is an indication that employee loyalty is now the exception and not the rule.

Kyra summed this up: 

"Candidates and employees are loyal to themselves first and foremost, which I think is a significant shift to where it was pre-pandemic where your job was everything and the question was, were you living to work rather than working to live?"

She added that "people's priorities have just shifted" since the Great Resignation of 2021, which never really ended and is now a key element in the Invisible Revolution.

What is the Great Resignation?

The Great Resignation was the exponential growth in the number of people who left their job during the early part of the Covid-19 pandemic. Emerging initially in 2020, it became much more apparent the following year, but has continued at a pace ever since.

In 2019 just 6% of people changed job, rising to 8% in 2020 which was only partially affected by the Coronavirus pandemic. But as lockdowns lifted and the option to change jobs became easier, the figure surged to 15% in 2021 and a massive 44% in 2022.

Doug noted that 8 in 10 people who started a new job within the past 12 months are already open to other opportunities. More than two thirds (7 in 10 people) have now changed jobs since the emergence of the pandemic, including 93% of people on temporary contracts and 65% on permanent contracts.

The numbers show that changing jobs is no longer the preserve of temporary workers, but is now commonplace among the majority of permanent employees too.

Calculating the Work-Life Equation

For employers, it's important to know your EVP (Employer Value Proposition) and how it's perceived among applicants. EVP is all about the value you offer to your personnel, not only financial, but taking into account their must-haves and desires from their working life.

A useful calculation within this is the Work-Life Equation, a measure of everything you give your staff for the work they do.

The Work-Life Equation is a sum of three different elements:

  • Salary: Is your pay fair and benchmarked to attract and retain talent?
  • Flexibility: Do you recognise employees' right to request flexible conditions?
  • Career Growth: How can you improve loyalty by supporting talent development?

After polling the live audience, Alex found that over 60% were "not far down the track at all" with measuring their EVP and only one in three had refreshed their EVP in the previous six months.

He said: "We've come out of the post-pandemic boom and we're into whatever the next stage is going to be. It's clear some organisations are learning the lessons and some aren't yet. EVP is quite simple - it just needs to be put on a piece of paper - so you can pull something together quickly and build from there."

For more insights into balancing the Work-Life Equation in your sector, take a look through these guides for more information:

Highlights from the Q&A 

As mentioned, live attendees were given the opportunity to ask questions throughout the webinar, which the panel took some time to answer at the end. Their responses are included in the archived video of the webinar, and we've pulled out some actionable insights below.

Is the availability of talent going to get any easier?

Doug: "It's really interesting at the moment because there are plenty of vacancies out there and over 85% of people are interested in looking at jobs. I think what's interesting, though, is that people are cautious about moving. So, organisations are looking for a perfect fit, because they want to know they're doing the right thing moving forwards, and the churn is a bit slow particularly on the permanent side, but the activity is still happening."

Where are the biggest skill shortages to be found?

Doug: "It's certainly not the most buoyant recruitment market but there's plenty going on, and that will probably continue to increase. When it does, we're going to be back quickly to those areas we had last year with huge skill shortages, particularly around the tech world, data transformation and so on. There's a very huge call for it and you can see that in some of the issues we've discussed, such as EVP and the need for HR people to attract and keep hold of talented individuals."

How can you check or measure loyalty in your organisation?

Alex: "Obviously you can't sit at home and see over your employees' shoulders to check if they're making applications elsewhere!"

Kyra: "You need to know and understand your workforce, because what one person is looking for, someone else could be looking for something else. It's tricky for organisations to get that balance and as they become more diverse, even more so there's no 'one size fits all'. It's important to listen. Ask questions of your employees and listen to their response, because if you insist on a certain direction of travel, you may lose people even quicker."

What's the best way to manage salaries?

Alex: "Doing business has got very expensive over the last 12 months. Salary inflation was 6% last year and is steady around 6-7% this year. It doesn't all need to be about annual pay increases - I've seen clients offering special awards, breaking things down and putting targets in place. Move away from the typical annual salary and towards a performance structure."

Kyra: "If the pay is fair, transparent and in line with the market, there are other aspects individuals could be looking for. Come back to the Work-Life Equation and flexibility, for example allowing employees to work an extra day remotely. There are different demographics now within the workforce and you need to look at the complete package."

What’s next?

With many more actionable insights to be found within, we recommend the Talent Trends 'Invisible Revolution' webinar as a must-watch for all business leaders and hiring managers as we move through the post-pandemic period.

For full access to the complete archived video of the webinar and Q&A session, register your details today.

Want to full all the insights that came from our global talent survey? Download your own version of the report to uncover the truth of this job market transformation.

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