A new survey of senior HR directors reveals that the vast majority are considering moving from their current job roles. 

According to research conducted by LACE Partners, a consultancy that supports major employers with HR transformation, seven in 10 (70 per cent) senior HR directors are looking to change jobs.

The pandemic was shown to have a sizeable impact on mental health as almost a quarter (23 per cent) reported feeling burnt out.

In addition to this, just over a third (36 per cent) said they were feeling resilient, showing that the last year has affected employees’ ability to bounce back from a barrage of changes – including senior HRDs.

This comes as companies such as Bumble and KPMG have given staff dedicated time off from work to relax and recover from burnout.

When asked to cite the reasons for considering moving job roles, over a fifth (21 per cent) explained they had long-held plans to move on once reaching this stage. Another one in 10 (10 per cent) stated they were enacting plans which had been delayed due to the pandemic.

However, this was not the case for all senior staff.

Just over one in eight (13 per cent) felt stress from working in their current organisation during the pandemic, encouraging them to look elsewhere.

On top of this, nearly a quarter (23.2 per cent) said they feel less emotionally attached to their organisations since the beginning of the pandemic, demonstrating a considerable breakdown in company culture over the last year.

Cathy Acratopulo, Managing Director and Co-Founder at LACE Partners, said:

From the survey sent to our senior HR contacts in major organisations, we can see that the pandemic has created significant levels of stress and burnout. Yet there is concern for their teams too. Nearly 90 per cent (88.4 per cent) of the respondents said some or most of their teams are showing signs of burnout. On top of this, three-fifths (59.4 per cent) expected to see movement or turnover in their teams in the next six to nine months.

The impact of both HR burnout and churn could be highly unsettling for some of the UK’s biggest businesses, although some may see it as a time to reset people strategies and outcomes. How much of the forthcoming churn will be led by individuals – or by the executive team – is yet to play out when strong performance in a time of significant turmoil will have been expected.

Whilst every member of the workforce is feeling the impact of the pandemic, HR teams have also had the pressure of ‘owning’ the way the business responds, so we would encourage leaders to listen to and recognise the particular pressures their HR teams may be experiencing.


*To obtain these results, LACE partners surveyed sixty-nine of the most senior HR people in the UK with three quarters working in organisations with more than 1000 employees (76.8 per cent).