Lack of professional development sign of latent discontent, says Aplin survey

Only 53 per cent of Canadians feel they are growing professionally at their job according to a recent nation-wide survey conducted by David Aplin Recruiting. Why is this statistic significant for employers?

A 2008 David Aplin Recruiting survey ( revealed that Canadian workers rated opportunity for advancement as their most important employment incentive, with 90 per cent of all respondents ranking it number one. Placing fourth at 85 per cent was experiencing new challenges, working on a variety of interesting projects.

The vast majority of workers felt these incentives – all indicative of professional growth – were very important reasons to either stay at their job or look for a new one. With almost half of this year’s respondents indicating they do not feel they are growing professionally, there appears to be some latent discontent on the part of a good portion of Canadian employees – but, are they waiting until the economy stabilizes to actively search out new job opportunities that will better fulfill their needs?

Interestingly, Aplin’s latest survey found that for the majority of respondents, the current economic situation was not a factor affecting their job search. Only 31 per cent of employed Canadians indicated that the current economy makes them less likely to look for a new job; some 41 per cent said it made no difference.

“Despite today’s economic crisis, employers need to empower their employees. If they don’t start providing new challenges that allow for professional development, their employees will seek other opportunities outside the company – if not now, then when the economy stabilizes,” says Mike Bacchus, president of David Aplin Recruiting.

The survey focused on employee engagement during the current economic crisis and was completed by more than 1600 currently employed Canadians. It was conducted over February and March 2009 and included employees from across Canada.

To view the Employee Engagement Survey Results, click here, or for general information about David Aplin Recruiting, a Canadian-owned full-service search firm with offices across the country, visit