Half of office workers willing to resign as labour shortage amplifies burnout

Rick Harshman, SVP and Managing Director, APAC and Japan at UiPath

According to a study by UiPath, an enterprise automation software firm, majority of office workers are feeling increased pressure at work due to colleagues resigning in the past year. As a result, 60% say they would consider resigning from their jobs in the next six months.

UiPath’s 2022 Office Worker Survey also found that monotonous tasks are amplifying employee unhappiness and uncertainty and that employees would welcome new processes and technologies such as automation to allow them to focus on work that matters.

What were the findings of UiPath’s study?

The third annual UiPath survey of global office workers uncovered the impact that the Great Resignation is having on employees’ roles, career trajectories, and overall experience.

The Great Resignation is an acute business challenge

Around the world, office workers feel increased pressure at work because their colleagues are quitting. Alarmingly, 84% of Australian respondents have taken on up to six new tasks outside of their job descriptions due to their coworkers resigning—and 56% of Australian survey respondents reported that they do not know what their responsibilities are anymore.

Labour shortages and mundane work are causing people to quit

60% say they are interested in looking for a new job in the next six months. Locally, people are motivated to seek a new position because of increased pressure on work/life balance (36%), low compensation (31%) and too much time spent on administrative tasks (21%).

Expanding roles are compounded by monotonous tasks

97% of respondents say they feel exhausted at the end of a workday at least one day per week. They’re frustrated by mundane tasks at work, like responding to emails (34%), inputting data/creating datasets (34%), and hosting and sitting in on meetings (33%).

Automation is core to improving their job performance

Consistent with UiPath Office Worker Surveys in 2021 and 2020, employees feel like much of their workday is eaten up by tasks that can be automated (52% of Australians feel this way).

Australian respondents believe that automation can improve their job performance; by saving time (61%), increasing productivity (52%), and creating opportunities to focus on vital work (45%). 67% agree they can focus on more creative work thanks to automation.

Automation can help fight the Great Resignation

70% of Australian respondents contend that incorporating automation—including training on automation—could help their organisation attract new and retain existing talent. However, 46% said their organisation doesn’t already offer automation or artificial intelligence tools.

What were the executive’s thoughts on the study?

“With closed borders, Aussie businesses have been hamstrung by skill shortages. Workers worldwide are feeling the stress of labour shortages in personal ways, and without a shift toward more meaningful work, businesses will continue to face productivity and competitive pressures,” said Rick Harshman, SVP and Managing Director, APAC and Japan at UiPath.

“While this issue is complex, technologies like automation can free workers’ time, enable a better work-life balance, and create vastly improved efficiencies that allow the business to be agile and responsive to customers. The world of work has changed, and retaining and attracting workers with emerging technology is a business imperative,” Harshman said.

The 2022 Office Worker Survey polled more than 5,000 office workers across the U.S., U.K., France, Germany, India, Australia, and Singapore and was conducted in February 2022.