10 Signs that Engineers should look for, that say it is time to change job.


Ever gotten out of a car upon arriving at work, snapped out of a daze and not really remembered the commute?

Neurologists explain this as the way your mind perceives time. So in an activity that happens regularly, your brain isn’t recording anything that is out of routine, but if you go off somewhere for fun weekend then you look back and think “Wow, that was a long weekend”

We speak with hundreds of engineers every week, who give us multiple reasons for why they want to leave their job and find a new position, what strikes me is why they didn’t see these issues sooner.

So I wanted to share some of the main reasons engineers are telling us they are leaving their company, so that you don’t get stuck in the day to day grind in a role that doesn’t have any prospects.


1. Continuous Improvement / Lean, is not in the culture of the business

CI and Lean are great methodologies in a manufacturing environment and when used correctly can save thousands in waste, whilst honing systems and processes to be the best versions they can be. These tools work best when bought in to by the people at the top of the business, otherwise they can just be a buzzword. When your job is to make things more efficient or reduce waste, and the management aren’t interested in your idea, it can be extremely frustrating!

2. You aren’t learning

Psychologists say, that learning something new is the key to being happy. If your job doesn’t provide you with opportunities to learn new skills are stay at the front of your profession, then perhaps that tug of boredom that you have been feeling at work is your natural thirst for knowledge.

3. No career progression

Look at your reporting structure, is it flat? Where can you go from here? can you see a well-structured career path upwards, with examples of people that have walked that path before? Are those opportunities genuinely available to you? If not, then it may be time to make a move.

4. No Investment

Investment doesn’t have to come in the form of new multi million-pound capital equipment, it can be in systems, processes or people. Think about the last time your company made an investment in the business. Chances are that if the company PC’s are running windows 3.1 or your machinery has given up the ghost multiple times, you should be looking for a new position.

5. Company is losing clients

I’m not saying jump into the lifeboat at the first sign of trouble, but if your company has lost a key client and doesn’t have any other business in the sales funnel, they could be in trouble.

6. Sensitive HR issues, handled badly

No one likes to be let go of or taken down the disciplinary route, unfortunately these are a fact of business. But we can’t forget that at the end of the day it is people that are involved in these processes. People deserve to be treated with respect and dignity in these difficult situations. I spoke with an engineer recently who said that someone have been sacked on the spot, and made to clear their desk out, no warning, nothing, leaving the workforce terrified at who may be next.

7. Promises not being kept

If you were made promises when joining, set career goals in your review or were told that an issue would get sorted, and this has not happened. It is time to dust off your CV.

8. No regular review with your boss

A regular review with your boss, will help you to keep focused on the objectives of your role, give you a structure for feedback and help you to understand the overall goals of the business. If you aren’t getting this, you could drift on indefinitely. How do you know you are doing a good job? where are your opportunities for training and development? What direction is your department going in? I’m not just talking about an annual review, I mean a monthly or quarterly sit down.

9). Accomplishments not being celebrated

We all go to work to complete tasks and do our best. Take a moment to really analyse the commercial impact of your work. If you are a manufacturing engineer who saves an organisation £250,000 in waste, or a Quality Engineer reducing scrap by 30%, these things need to be acknowledged and celebrated

10. Resistance to new / ideas and change

Like CI not being bought into, if there is a resistance to change and new ideas then it is time to change roles, if you aren’t growing you are shrinking. The manufacturing world moves at a pace, a solid career if built on embracing new ideas and change. If there is a resistance to this. Send us your CV now!


So they were the 10 most popular reasons we come across, that are driving engineers to move jobs. Don’t drift along in a daze, take a moment to look at these, can you spot any of them in your current role? If you can, you could take a moment to talk to your boss and see if you can’t address the situation. If you can’t see a resolution, pick up the phone and call us on 0121 651141 or email

We work with some great clients who are looking for engineers to join their teams.To receive relevant enginering vacancies, direct to your inbox, you can register as a candidate here.

I would be really interested to hear your motivations for moving from your old positions, drop me a line