CDAO Community Pulse on the Impact of the Great Resignation

October 2021

In today’s shifting environment -- a year and a half into the global pandemic with near constant uncertainty for business leaders and employees alike – CDAOs and other C-suite leaders are navigating a complex workforce landscape. Work and personal lives are intertwined, personal priorities and views on work have changed, and the hybrid model of work is yet another transition for everyone. 

Record numbers of workers are leaving their current jobs in 2021. Is it a temporary shift or something bigger? This is what more than 65 CDAOs are saying about the “Great Resignation” and how it is impacting their outlook for 2022 and beyond.


The Impact of Attrition

When asked if they are experiencing greater than normal attrition at their organization this year, 100% said yes or about the same as in years past. Data and analytics leaders were the only C-suite role in the survey with zero executives saying that they are not experiencing higher or the same attrition.


Why Employees Are Leaving

When asked what they think is causing employee turnover, 70% of CDAOs believe it is the competition or other companies actively recruiting their employees.


Relative Importance of Retention

When asked how much of a priority employee attrition is for CDAOs right now, 74% responded that it’s a 4 or 5 on a scale of 1 to 5, with 5 being their top priority.


Employee Retention Tactics

63% of CDAO respondents said that they are offering more flexibility to try to engage and retain employees right now with improving company culture (54%) and examining promotion paths (54%) tied for second.


Recruiting New Employees

The responses changed slightly when asked about specific ways they are trying to attract new employees with promoting company culture as the most common strategy (70%), followed by flexible working arrangements (61%) and competitive compensation (57%).


A Trend or an Ongoing Challenge? 

The highest percentage of CDAOs indicate that they think the “Great Resignation” will last for 6 to 12 months (37%), followed by 12+ months (28%). A small percentage (8%) believe that it’s a near-term phenomenon, lasting 0-6 months from now.


Planning for 2022

How are CDAOs managing and planning for 2022 in this current environment? Here is a sample of what they are saying:

I have replaced almost my entire team in the past year, so I am hoping not to see more attrition in 2022.”

Considering outsourcing more work to third parties until we are able to stabilize our workforce.”

Building bench strength and a flexible future of work.”

Trying to work more efficiently with the resources we have, knowing that it may be difficult to recruit.”

Working with my team through a strategy process to increase engagement, team connectedness, and personal alignment to the work.”

Ensuring we have a funnel of qualified candidates we are speaking to before we even open a new role for recruiting.”


If you are a data and analytics leader trying to navigate employee engagement and retention, explore an opportunity to collaborate with your peers or join a community at


Based on more than 65 CDAO responses to Evanta’s Community Pulse Survey, October 2021.


by CDAOs, for CDAOs

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