The great tech unrest: 3 in 4 UK tech workers dissatisfied at work


OVER three quarters (77%) of tech talent in the UK are unhappy in their current jobs and actively seeking out new roles, according to a new report out today.

The What Do Tech Talent Want in 2023 report, by Europe’s biggest technology talent hub hackajob, surveyed over 1,000 UK technology workers from developers and engineers, to data scientists, analysts, designers, product managers and more.

According to the report, only 11% of UK tech talent are content to stay in their current role.

The findings also reveal a concerning disparity between what most UK employers are positioning as benefits and perks to attract and retain talent, and what talent actually want. 

Mark Chaffey, CEO and co-founder of hackajob, says: “Thanks to a global pandemic, a shaky economy and multiple layoffs, the report reveals a marked shift in technology industry attitudes towards job satisfaction. New priorities, new ways of working and changing relationships with work are leading to a brand new set of frustrations in the workplace. Employees want to be heard, recognised and valued.

“With former perks such as flexible working now being seen as the norm, many companies are seemingly struggling to figure out what the new era of benefits means for their business. The gap between what companies are offering, and what tech workers want is causing unrest at a time when there’s no shortage of alternative job openings out there.”

Key Report Discoveries:

A growing number of tech talent want to move jobs – and quickly:

  • Over three quarters (77%) of tech talent are unhappy with their roles and have looked for a new job in the past six months 
  • 20% of tech talent are ready to leave their jobs as soon as possible, with only 11% happy to stay in their current role

Company Culture is King:

  • After compensation, candidates are most attracted to a role and organisation by the overall culture (15%) and mission (13%) 
  • When asked what they loved most about their current company / what makes them say, almost half of all surveyed (44%) said company culture followed by flexible/remote working (13%)

New ways of working are here to stay:

  • Remote working (61%) is the aspect tech talent enjoy most about their jobs, ranking above tech stack (34%), benefits (25%) and location (21%)
  • The biggest work-related frustrations and challenges include salary (34%), lack of learning and development (32%) and not feeling valued (32%)

There is a lot more employers can do to attract, engage and retain tech talent

  • 83% of tech talent want to see a 4-day week introduced 
  • Working on their own terms is highly important to tech talent – remote working (61%), flexible working (57%) and location (21%) are amongst some of highest aspects to why they enjoy their current roles 

Chaffey says: “It’s easy to think that the tech layoffs that happened in late 2022 and early 2023 have stilled the waters in tech hiring, but this couldn’t be further from the truth. Whilst many companies such as Amazon, Google, Meta and Microsoft have made several adjustments to their staff, many more “non-tech” organisations are still gearing up to make more tech hires than ever before as every company turns to technology as a critical part of their overall business strategy.

“But what does this mean for tech talent? Quite simply, there are still plenty of organisations hiring, and now many more people searching for new roles. Whilst salary will always be key to any tech job seeker, it is crucial that companies look outside of just remuneration in order to retain the tech talent they already have.”

Chaffey urges companies to really nail their Employer Value Proposition – what their organisation offers that is different to anyone else. 

He says: “The best benefits package really hone in on what is valuable to people. Crucially, perks shouldn’t all focus on the workplace itself. Tech talent want to spend their free time either exercising, spending time with their family and friends, working on a project or hobby and progressing their learning and development. The best benefits package will empower talent to have free time to do whatever they choose.”

hackajob, which uses AI to match candidates with companies based on their skillset and nothing more, is focused on diversity and inclusion in the tech sector. The platform has 800+ new candidates going live weekly, with an 85% response rate and 75% acceptance rate. A hire is made every 62 minutes on hackajob. 

hackajob partnered with Gearset to deliver the ‘What Do Tech Talent Want In 2023’ report which surveyed 1,000 people working in tech. The report can be downloaded here.

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