People Moves

One in five chartered accountants on verge of quitting their job

New research has found that 22% of chartered accountants are thinking about quitting on a weekly basis.

The research from CABA, the charity supporting the wellbeing of chartered accountants and their families, surveyed 251 ICAEW members, with 8% admitting to thinking about handing in their notice every day, with another 14% saying they considered leaving between one and four times per week.

A further one in five think about leaving their job every two to three weeks, with 35 to 44-year-olds the most affected age bracket. Over a third of accountants say they are considering quitting once per week or more.

The 22% of accountants was the highest of the sectors surveyed, with manufacturing the next highest at 21%. Overall, the average amount of people wanting to quit their role was 15%.

CABA research further highlighted that ICAEW members were struggling to achieve a work-life blend, with over half of respondents saying they worked late in the office on a weekly basis, while 22% said they did this every day.

Workload pressures also resulted in 47% of accountants taking work home with them, a quarter said they did this every day. As many as 35% admitted to working on days off including annual leave and public holidays, just 19% of the wider national sample said they did the same.

In addition, the research found that 21% of chartered accountants missed at least one personal or family engagement per week, with 18 to 34-year-olds the most likely affected, and women more prone to this than men. Younger employees were also more affected by their work emotionally, with 26% admitting to crying on a weekly basis at work, compared with a profession average of 14%.

Kelly Feehan, services director at CABA, said: “Chartered accountancy is a competitive sector, with firms striving to attract and keep the best talent. The fact that so many employees are feeling discontent in their roles should send a shockwave through the profession – put simply, employers need to act or lose their best staff. Replacing talent takes time, effort and is costly, so employers should consider some other fixes instead of assuming employees can be replaced like for like.

“Moving wellbeing up the corporate agenda could help facilitate this – the fact people are crying, checking emails when sick and regularly thinking about quitting shows something has got to change. Wellbeing and work-life blend will be a real priority as more millennials move into the workplace, so employers need to change cultures now to prepare themselves for the workforce of the future.”

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