How The Pandemic Has Changed What Young People Want From Their Careers

Photographed by Lauren Maccabee
The pandemic has already had a significant impact on what young people want from their careers, according to a new survey.
Around two-thirds of young people in the UK and US who responded to the survey said their work expectations and career aspirations have changed because of Covid-19.
Among young people who have rethought their career plans, 33% said they are now looking a better work-life balance, while 28% said they are now hoping to achieve greater financial security.
The survey by Liberty Communications and Opinium also highlights the extent to which the so-called "dream job" now seems increasingly out of reach for many members of Gen Z.
Just 52% of young people said they are currently scaling the career ladder they want to be on, while 39% said they doubted they would ever achieve their ideal career.
Elena Davidson, CEO of Liberty Communications, said in response to the survey's findings: "It’s clear that more and more young people in both countries are entering the workplace not only with altered priorities, but also with an increased uncertainty that they are in the right role."
The survey also highlights the difficulties of finding employment during the pandemic. Some 96% of young people said they had faced obstacles in applying for jobs during this time.
In the UK, 42% said the sheer number of people applying for each role was a problem, while 31% said virtual interviews made it hard to establish a connection with prospective employers.
“The research shows that Covid-19 has drastically changed the landscape for young people and that money is no longer the main factor for incoming professionals across the UK and US," said James Endersbury of Opinium.
"As such, we would advise employers that they need to adapt their recruitment strategies to ensure they remain attractive to this next generation of talent.”