Skip to main content

Want to make more money? One report says you should quit your job

Tips on how to move up and move on if you're dissatisfied at work

Ever dreamed of just quitting your job? You’re not alone.

The ‘quits rate,’ defined by the U.S. The Bureau of Labor and Statistics as “voluntary separations initiated by employees,” reached nearly 4 million in April 2021. This is the highest level measured since the BLS began tracking voluntary separations in December 2000. Hence, last spring marked the start of “The Great Resignation.”

Spurred on by altered job and social conditions during the pandemic, and fueled by the slew of job opportunities as pandemic restrictions ebbed, the quits rate remained at historically high levels over a year later, in June 2022.

Story board drawing for music video 'I Quit.'
Rocketace

The Great Resignation is now old enough to collect data and draw some conclusions on the success of these job jumps. Calculations by the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta, for example, found that people who quit for a better job saw their wages jump by a record 6.7% on average in the subsequent 12 months at their new employer. This was nearly two percentage points higher than those who remained in the same role for the same company.

What’s more, a recent survey of more than 15,000 Joblist users and job seekers found that only about one in four people who quit their previous job regret their decision. While 42% say that their new job has not lived up to their expectations, this means that among millions of job jumpers, over half are finding at least minimal upgrades at their new gig.

If you’re one of those people getting the itch to level up your job during this great shift, here are a few tips on how to shine amidst the hordes packing up tent poles and moving onto greener, better-paid pastures.

The best time to apply is now

Studies vary on when is the best time of year to apply for jobs. December to February can be one of the worst times of year to apply because year-end campaigns are wrapping with new initiatives launching. For some firms, however, this opens the coffers to add new employees. For some businesses, this means wrapping up budgets and allocating resources before dedicating money to new employees.

Closed for winter. See you in the spring sign.
Designwallah

In the same vein, the summer is typically a slower season as families vacation, and employees tend to take long breaks. Business continues, but not at the same pace as during the spring and fall. With 528,000 jobs added this past July, however, it’s been a seller’s market, with power shifting to workers as companies experience a massive shortage of help. Politico reports that this pendulum may be swinging back, but the point remains: if you’re ready to look for new work, there’s no point trying to time the market. There’s no better time than now.

Spitshine your resume

If you don’t recognize the face in the dark YouTube screenshot, that’s the since-passed Frank Vincent playing gangster Billy Batts in Goodfellas. In the scene, Batts tells Tommy DeVito (Joe Pesci) to, “Go home and get your shine box,” an insult based on DeVito’s earlier work as a shoeshine boy. Despite suffering fatal consequences for the quip, Batts provides quality advice for all you job seekers out there: spitshine your resume until it’s gleaming.

Frank Vincent as Billy Batts in Goodfellas.
Warner Bros.

The pandemic very well could have led to a gap in employment or strange turns in your career. Instead of skipping over them and leaving an obvious temporal hole in your CV, take advantage of the time off to show a potential employer how you sparkle outside of work.

Maybe you took up volunteer work, helped to take care of the kids, or tutored the neighbor kid to bridge virtual schooling. Any and all assistance that you gave outside of work is a chance to show your get-up-and-go, commitment to community, proactivity, and other transferable skills hiring managers are looking for.

Make sure that you also take algorithms into account upon submitting your digital CV as it will likely have to navigate its way through a bot searching for keywords. When reading the job description, keep close attention to functional words. Ensure that you get through this gauntlet by verifying that you use similar phrasing to ensure passage through AI.

Highlight your accomplishments

Don’t just describe the experience — provide the accomplishment.

“Provided deep knowledge and uplifted critical thinking skills that assisted a student not only excel on their AP exam, but earned them college credit and boosted their application to X university,” sounds a lot better than, “Helped a student get through World History.”

When considering resume bullets, always make the extra step from “What did I do?” to “What did I accomplish?” during your tenure.

Encourage people to recruit you

Did you know that it’s the mission of thousands and thousands of people to find and bring talent into thriving companies? Why not help yourself out by introducing yourself to a few recruiters out there?

Carpe Diem spelled out with letter tiles.
Pxhere.com

A 2012 Jobvite study found that 93% of hiring managers use LinkedIn to recruit potential employees. Think that’s subsided in the last 10 years? If so, think again.

To find a recruiter, simply search for ‘recruiter’ on LinkedIn and align them to possible jobs, companies, or connections on the social network. Connecting with two or three relevant recruiters will not only double or triple the amount of people helping to look for your new job, these human resources become allies, giving you a leg-up and a voice in the ear of hiring managers.

Make your LinkedIn page pop

When applying for work, one of the first things that employers are going to do is surf over to your LinkedIn page if they’re interested in exploring your candidacy. LinkedIn could be an entire entry unto itself, but it’s key that your profile makes an impactful initial impression and leaves a lasting imprint. A 2018 LinkedIn study also found that profiles with a photo receive 21 times more profile views and nine times more connection requests than those without them.

The first step in this is an engaging photo descriptive of you at work. Your background should also be eye-catching and hint at a story about you. The point is to get people interested in learning more about who you are. If they’re hooked, you need to keep them on the page with similarly appealing “About,” “Features, and “Experience” sections. How you found yourself on this particular career path is a critical story to weave. This makes you stand out from peers and lets organizations know what you’ve learned, how this has shaped your craft, and what value you can bring.

Also use also the strategies described in the resume section. Words commonly found on job descriptions you’re looking at need to be incorporated into your profile’s about and experience sections.

Shore up your social media

Shoring up your social media could also exist as its own article. We’ll provide the keys here, but if you’re still feeling unsure, there are lots of resources to dig in deeper.

Every neck tattoo should read "I'm not getting the job, am I?"

— Alex Baze (@bazecraze) March 30, 2011

The same guidelines on LinkedIn apply to Twitter, Instagram, and other social media: leave a lasting impression. Engage readers and users with a lively bio and intriguing visuals. Take engagement a step further than other potential applicants by not only following your industry’s influencers, but inviting them into discussions by responding and/or reposting resonant social messages. Heck, you can even ask for likes or reposts back. This is a shareable world and you might engender some important new fans.

Social media offers an incredible ability to access and to connect with people in your industry. Don’t be shy about connecting with companies and people that you respect and emulate. Who knows when an opportunity will arise? When it does, you’ll already have an inside edge because of pre-planning and forging relationships.

Develop inside contacts and learn company cultures

When you’ve found your dream job, another way to get a leg up on fellow applicants is to touch base with employees where you’re applying.

EVERY COMPANY: We'd like to promote mental health in the workplace.

EMPLOYEES: How about hiring more people so we feel less pressured & increase our pay so we can keep up with the spiraling cost of living so we're not so stressed out.

EVERY COMPANY: No not like that. Try Yoga.

— Patrick (@PatJD) March 20, 2019

Connecting with potential co-workers could potentially give you an ally in the hiring process in addition to an inside view into company culture. What looks like a wonderful world from the outside could be a nightmare inside. Connecting with someone in a similar role helps you build perspective on a possible employer’s culture and expectations.

Already know someone at the firm? Perfect. Now link up with someone else. Having multiple insider allies is better than only one.

Verbalize your aspirations

Moving places of employment is not easy. Before you embark on a job search that will require many months of dedication, ensure that you know what you want to do, how much you want to get paid to do it, and where you want to go. Landing a new gig begins with clarity of focus and purposeful direction.

Now go out there and kick some butt!

Editors' Recommendations

Matthew Denis
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Matt Denis is an on-the-go remote multimedia reporter, exploring arts, culture, and the existential in the Pacific Northwest…
7 great books about psychedelics you should definitely read
Add these books to your need-to-read list to learn about psychedelics
A stoned guy reading a book.

A lot has been published on the vast topic of psychedelics over the past 70 years, and while a lot of what has been written makes all manner of elaborate claims both positive and negative about these powerful substances, much if not most of the books on the matter range somewhere between misleading and outright fabrication. What with all the war on drugs propaganda, new age hype and overpromise, outdated or incorrect science, and repetitive trip reports, it can be difficult to find a book on psychedelics that’s actually worth your time.

To help you sort through the expansive assortment of books on psychedelic drugs, I’ve put together a selection of seven titles you can count on for a combination of accurate information and an engaging read. Some are classics dating back to the early days of the movement while others offer the latest research on psychedelic therapy.

Read more
The 13 best movies of the 2000s you should watch (or rewatch)
From Kill Bill to Zodiac, these are the best movies you should watch from the 2000s
best movies of the 2000s kill bill 2003

The aughts mark an era of great art. Indie rock, for example, started to gain momentum in the music realm while movies exploded with the kind of fresh innovation and creativity that can only come from the dawn of a new millennium. There were duds, for sure. Most people just use Snakes on a Plane as anything but a joke, and seemingly interesting releases such as Garden State are boring when rewatched today. And while there were plenty of great action movies, there were some duds as well.
We've had an additional decade to see which movies struck a chord, whether it’s as a result of phenomenal acting, clever editing, or an intoxicating script. The first decade of the 21st century was blessed with many iconic films. Below, we rounded up the best movies of the 2000s to watch. If you are looking for more films to stream from other eras, check out our list of the best Amazon Prime movies or the best movies on Netflix.

Punch-Drunk Love (2002)

Read more
The first ‘Napoleon’ movie trailer teases everything you want in a Ridley Scott, Joaquin Phoenix team up
Joaquin Phoenix takes over the world in the first 'Napoleon' trailer
napoleon movie trailer joaquin phoenix

A world conqueror is coming. The first trailer for Ridley Scott's Napoleon just dropped, and it features basically everything you might want from a Ridley Scott movie about Napoleon Bonaparte. There's Joaquin Phoenix wearing a series of period costumes and leading historic charges, plenty of horses, and Vanessa Kirby doing her best Lady MacBeth. The trailer suggests that the movie will give us a sweeping view of the French Revolution, which brought Napoleon to power, as well as his time as Emperor of the French Empire and his eventual downfall.

The movie, which comes from Apple and is being released in theaters on Nov. 22 and will hit Apple TV+ at a later date, has an official description that reads as follows: “Napoleon Bonaparte’s relentless journey to power through the prism of his addictive, volatile relationship with his one true love, Josephine (Vanessa Kirby), showcasing his visionary military and political tactics against some of the most dynamic practical battle sequences ever filmed.”

Read more