Is your career moving in the direction that you’d hoped? Do you like your current job? Does it pay you decently well? Do you like your co-workers? Do you feel challenged? Do you hope the day passes quickly? These are all common questions we ask ourselves along our careers. How do we know we’re happy where we are or if it’s time to move on to a new job? It’s not an easy question to answer, especially if you consider that life is not static. You can be happy one day, but then circumstances can change and you start wondering if it’s best to start a job search.


As staffing experts, we always recommend people to regularly check-in with themselves about their professional and financial happiness and goals. Ask yourself some questions like the ones we mentioned above or pay attention to the signs:


It’s affecting your well-being

Stress at work can have a variety of sources – a boss, a colleague, the environment, the working hours, poor work-life balance, the commute, the activities you perform. We spoke before about how you can identify stress at work and how you can manage it. But sometimes that’s not enough. Research shows that employees who are suffering in their lives are twice as likely to move jobs than those who are happy. So, if you think that your work is negatively affecting your physical or mental health, consider starting a job search.


You don’t get feedback or you feel undervalued

Almost 80% of people say they left a job because of lack of appreciation. If your direct manager doesn’t provide feedback or their feedback is too generic, you’ll probably miss having advice and guidance to move forward. But it’s even worse if you’re doing a good job and feel no one appreciates it. The lack of recognition and the feeling that your contributions are not being acknowledged will likely build over time and it will become demotivating to you. If discussing this with your leadership doesn’t change anything, it might be time for you to make a change in your career.


There’s no room to grow

Are you doing the same thing for too long, to the point you no longer feel challenged at work? Are you seeing others getting promoted around you? Or even worse, you notice that career progression is not really a thing in your company’s culture? While it’s not healthy to compare ourselves to others, it’s important to regularly check-in with ourselves, like we mentioned in the beginning of this article. If you’re working hard to progress in a company but it seems like there’s no room for you to grow in your current workplace, consider looking somewhere else.


You’re underpaid

Money is not the most important thing when it comes to a job but we’re all living in a difficult economy. If you think you’re not paid fairly, build a case to discuss with your line manager – research compensation for the job you do, in the area where you live, so you can have a conversation based on facts rather than assumptions. If bringing this up to your leadership doesn’t work, it may be time to leave. 


External factors you cannot change

Maybe your commute is too long or difficult, or the work environment is toxic, you might know the company is not doing well or is going through big changes, or you’re even seeing a high employee turnover. Trust your gut feeling, sometimes we just know that a place is not the right one for us.


Before making any big decisions regarding leaving your job, we also recommend taking some time off. Sometimes we just need to disconnect and rest, so we’re in a better position to re-evaluate things. Discussing it with friends and family can also bring you new perspectives. Remember, we usually spend about 40h per week at work (if not more!), so we should always choose it wisely.


And if you’re ready for your next career step, check out the available positions Shiftfillers have to offer you!