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Half of all employees are continuously job hunting: survey

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Almost half of employed workers and professionals from across the globe participating in a recent survey, 49%, say they constantly have their antennae out for new job opportunities -- even when they are happy in their current position. And few feel that their current employers are giving them a fair deal in terms of advancement opportunities.

These are some of the finding of the 2012 Kelly Global Workforce Index, based on the findings of almost 170,000 respondents, working in a range of jobs from 30 countries.

The survey finds a great deal of empowerment among today's generation of employees, along with a discontent with their current  status. Fewer than one-third, 29%, feel they currently have career advancement opportunities from their current employers.

There is very little evidence of job loyalty in the survey, which covers employees from North America to Europe to the Asia-Pacific rim. A majority, 53%, say they would prefer to be on the move, switching jobs as opportunities come up -- versus staying with one employer for an extended period of time.  Even more, 70%, say having multiple employers is more beneficial to one's career growth prospects.

Fewer than a third, 31%, say career-for-life is a relevant part of today's business environment. Ironically, younger professionals are most likely to buy into the notion of career-for-life, with 32% of Gen Yers (those 20-30 years old) saying it is a realistic goal, versus only 28% of the more jaded Baby Boomer set (45 years or older).

Not clear from the Kelly survey is the degree to which today's employees view entrepreneurship and contract opportunities as the way to advance in today's economy. Many organizations today are built upon networks of contractors and entrepreneurs, who interject their expertise from project to project.

The Kelly survey also finds people involved in marketing, security and sales are the most likely to favor job-hopping -- while those in industrial or clerical positions are more inclined to stay put if they can.

And, even in the midst of a rocky economy with relatively high unemployment rates, most employees are confident about their chances of getting a new job. A majority, 54%, feel their skills are in demand, and 69% say they are in a good bargaining position to get a another job in their field.

— By on November 8, 2012, 1:29 AM PST

Joe McKendrick

Contributing Editor

Joe McKendrick is an independent analyst who tracks the impact of information technology on management and markets. He is a co-author of the SOA Manifesto and has written for Forbes, ZDNet and Database Trends & Applications. He holds a degree from Temple University. He is based in Pennsylvania. Follow him on Twitter. Disclosure