32: the age of career contentment

32 the age of career contentment
  • Brits are more likely to find career contentment before marriage
  • Three job moves leads to work fulfilment
  • Workers rate work/life balance over salary when it comes to career happiness

The average age workers experience career contentment is 32, according to our latest research. It seems there’s truth in the saying life begins at 30, as more people are likely to find fulfilment at work, as well as in their relationships*, in this decade.

Three is the magic number

The survey also shows that it takes an average of three job moves before British workers find career contentment.  According to our Career Contentment Index, striking the perfect work / life balance (20 per cent) is the biggest factor impacting job happiness, topping both salary (18 per cent) and job security (15 per cent).

The little things matter too with almost a third of respondents (31 per cent) stating that an easy daily commute helps them feel happier at work. A further one in three (29 per cent) believe a cool office environment is key, whilst one in sixteen (15 per cent) put their contentment at work down to their colleagues.

Finding ‘the one’

Of those respondents (39 per cent) not currently content with their careers, and a quarter (24 per cent) are considering changing jobs in a hope to find ‘the one’.

One in seven (15 per cent) also indicated that they’re considering additional training to advance their career, whilst one in eight (12 per cent) are pursuing personal projects to change their job. For one in 12 people (eight per cent), starting up a business is the answer to achieving true job satisfaction.

Commenting on the latest figures, Lynn Cahillane, Communications Manager at reed.co.uk said:

“A recent stat claims that 91% of young workers expect to stay in their jobs for less than three years – our research reveals why: they’re on the hunt for career contentment.

Your career is a serious business and for many, is one of the most important parts of their lives. That’s why finding a job that makes you happy is vital. What’s more, if you’re not content with your work situation, it can also have a knock-on effect on your home life. If this is the case for you, it might be time to search for your next job.”

Top ten

Here are the top ten factors that lead to career contentment:

1. Easy daily commute

2. Cool / fun work space

3. Good work / life balance

4. Salary

5. Job security

6. Work social events

7. Working alongside inspiring colleagues

8. Good promotion prospects

9. Extra holiday

10. Dress down Friday

*ONS 2012 figures:

  • average age men get married = 36 years old
  • average age women get married = 34 years old