According to the findings of a JobBuzz (’s employee to employee community) survey of professionals working in different startups, a whopping 88% said they were ready to leave their current jobs in these new ventures if offered jobs in larger and more established companies. Only 12% respondents felt content in their current startup work profiles.

Over 750 professionals working in different new ventures across the startup hotbeds of Delhi, Bangalore, Hyderabad, Mumbai, Pune, Gurgaon, Delhi and Noida took part in the survey.

When asked why they were thinking of quitting their startup jobs:

  • 43% felt they would be able to draw higher salaries in established companies.
  • A significant 30% said it was due to the nature of their jobs in startups as they were unable to maintain work-life balance.
  • Only 15% survey respondents admitted that they wanted to switch to an established company to seek better job security.

Interestingly, the fear of the startup not taking off properly and employees losing their jobs was not reported to be a major concern.

But ennui appears to have set in among employees who have been in these startups for at least one year and more. Nearly 65% of them said they would readily switch to an established player if they got the opportunity.

The survey findings seem to point towards an impending attrition problem that startups could face in the near future as they seek to scale.

“Today’s talent is no longer lured by just fat paychecks. They are looking at long-term career growth and are careful when choosing their employers. The recent spate of retrenchments have deeply affected the very important and high-engagement sense of ownership and belonging that young professionals felt when they joined these start-ups,” says Vivek Madhukar, COO,

“Those joining startups must have that sense of passion and ownership to make the company grow. If they want to switch, as the survey shows, startups need to have a relook at their hiring strategy so they pick people who share the vision of the founders and feel themselves part of the company’s growth story,” adds Madhukar.

Nearly 58% employees in IT, internet, dotcom, consulting and retail startups, who answered the survey, said they wanted to move to bigger companies. The discontent appears widespread among both junior and senior-level professionals, 75% of whom wanted to move to bigger companies.

However, respondents felt that their startup stints had started off with a lot of passion.

When asked why they took up a startup job in the first place:

  • 54% said it was because of the thrill of working in a new venture.
  • Only 23% had taken up the jobs for higher salary
  • While 20% were looking for a flexible work culture – a major pull for Gen Y and Z today.

On the concerns they had before they joined startups, most survey respondents said it was the risk of the venture failing (63%) and the pressure of taking up multiple roles (29%).

HR leaders from large companies, speaking at various boardroom discussions, have said that startups pulling in talent has become a hiring challenge for them. But some also pointed towards increasing cases of burnout among employees as the new ventures scaled and thus the increasing urge to leave for established companies.

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