When business is thriving and work gets busy, it’s easy to pay less attention to employees and take them for granted. Then, out of the blue you get word that one of your top performing employees is leaving the company. You didn’t realize until that very moment how much you depend on them, and are completely unprepared for their departure and subsequent replacement. You missed all signs that your employee was job hunting or interviewing elsewhere.
A recent LinkedIn survey found that about 30% of employed professionals are actively job searching. Losing an employee can put a lot of extra expense on your company, especially if you aren’t prepared for it. A study done by the Center for American Progress found that for all jobs that make less than $50,000 per year (which is more than 40 percent of U.S. jobs), the total average cost for an company to replace an employee is 20% of that employee’s annual salary. This doesn’t necessarily mean that when you see signs that your employee is job hunting or interviewing elsewhere you should try to keep them. In many cases, it’s worth gauging the employee’s level of happiness and seeing if there is anything you can do to hold onto them. But if they are already mentally checked out of their job, keeping them will cause your company to suffer in the long term. In that case, if you pay closer attention you can at least be better prepared for their departure. Here are some revealing signs that your employee is job hunting:
1) They are Dressing More Formally Than Usual
If your employee is interviewing elsewhere, they are likely to show up to work in their interview attire. Since interview garb is usually way more formal than office dress codes, this is one of the easiest to catch signs that your employee is job hunting.
2) They Seem Distracted and Less Productive
When employees are planning on leaving a job, they tend to care a lot less about their work. While it’s possible they are having personal issues, if they aren’t performing like they used to or are unresponsive to emails, your employee may be about to leave the company.
3) They Aren’t Presenting as Many New Ideas
If an employee is interviewing elsewhere, they are likely using a lot of their mental energy to impress their new employer. If they are showing less enthusiasm for their job and aren’t generating ideas like they used to, it’s one of the giveaway signs your employee is job hunting.
4) They are Increasingly Absent or Late
It’s a red flag if you notice your usually punctual employee is showing up later than usual, taking longer lunches or needs more time off for appointments or sick days. They may be using the time they aren’t in the office for interviews or job searching.
5) They Have Mentioned Major Changes in Their Personal Life
If your employee mentions an impending divorce, move, new addition to the family, or other developments that are taking place in their personal or family life, it’s an obvious sign that they may be on the lookout for a new job.
6) They Aren’t Showing as Much Concern for Issues That Used to Bother Them
In the past, your employee may have complained about issues such as lack of communication in the company, software problems or a holdup on their ideas being implemented. One of the signs your employee is job hunting or interviewing elsewhere is if you see a noticeable drop in their level of concern over things that held a lot of importance to them in the past.
Author: Jessica Cody
Jessica Cody, a native of Fairfield County, Connecticut, has a background in online marketing and public relations. Currently, she works at VHMNetwork LLC in the role of Marketing Analyst. She is a graduate of the University of Connecticut, where she studied Journalism and Political Science. She is also an avid runner with a passion for the outdoors.