As a result, workers are lobbying their bosses for more training, and taking up evening courses off their own back.
But 30 percent actively hold back “secret skills” that are part of the job description of their current job.
And over half (53 percent) are now inclined to look for new opportunities that are more fitting to their skills, since returning to the office following lockdowns.
Professor Adam Boddison, Chief Executive of APM – the Association for Project Management – which conducted the research as part of its 50th anniversary celebrations, said: “This research has given us much insight into the restrictions workers feel in their jobs.
“However, it’s great to see many have felt a boost to look further afield, in a bid to better utilise their skills in other roles.
“So many people clearly feel they are not being used to their full potential, and would relish the opportunity to maximise their communication, organisational, planning, and project management skills.”
The study also found over two-thirds (67 percent) of men have raised issues with management about their current job role – and seven in ten have successfully gained a promotion by asking for one.
Comparatively, only 50 percent of women have been promoted after taking it upon themselves to ask management.
Of all the adults polled, 21 percent feel “uncomfortable” when asking for a promotion or pay rise – and 11 percent believe their bosses are unapproachable for the topic.
But one in ten who have taken up evening courses off their own back already feel very confident in leaving their current position and applying for a different role with a better salary.
As many as four in ten believe they have leadership skills hidden below the surface of what they present in the workplace.
And 38 percent believe they’re skilled in project management and time management – which they’re holding back in their current role.
It also emerged almost half (46 percent) feel less confident asking for training to expand their skillsets, if it isn’t offered to them by those higher up.
But this feeling diminishes with age – as 22 percent of those aged 24-34 strongly feel that way, compared to just 10 percent of those aged 55-64.
More workers, polled via OnePoll, also claimed they’d rather stay at their current company and work their way up, compared to switching careers completely (38 percent compared to 22 percent).
Prof. Boddison added: “It can be easier to try and stay within your own company and move up, if that network is available.
“But our research found, for many, they’ve hit a roadblock in how far their current company can take them.
“There is a risk that people may end up becoming indispensable to their department, so management is reluctant to let them move on and spread their wings.
“Managers who understand that what’s best for the employee overall is best for the company, are what you hope to find in the workplace.”