Flexibility – The Key to Attracting Candidates

The job market is incredibly hot, and most companies are experiencing gaps in many teams. While much of the national media attention is focused on lower level/unskilled workers, what we are seeing is a lack of workers in the professional areas we serve – marketing, IT and operations. In this job market, we wanted to understand the attributes of a job that are most valued by job seekers. And, with this understanding, employers can adjust their needs and the requirements they set for jobs to attract more candidates. And, we can guide to define roles in a way, that business needs are met, while still filling the role.

Here are the results of the survey:

Question: What is most important when looking for a new job? (single answer)

  • Flexible work environment: 44%
  • Salary & benefits: 27%
  • Positive work culture: 25%
  • Employer’s brand & mission: 4%

Unsurprisingly, flexibility around hours, location, etc., is the top attribute for job seekers. This is going to be really important to note, as more offices begin to open and employers require employees to return to offices. If return to office policies are too stringent, then those employers risk losing employees to companies with more flexible policies. So, it will be an important balancing act – between the benefits of being physically together and the flexibility that workers are demanding.

What is also interesting in our survey results is that employer’s brand and mission is relatively not very important to job seekers. Given the emphasis on employer branding and the resources put into elevating it, we were surprised that there is such a disconnect with what is important to job seekers. Maybe this is a reflection of the relatively short tenures with companies, and a result of the layoff offs in 2020? Perhaps, employees don’t view any job as “permanent,” and we are all, at some level, “temporary” employees?

While there is so much more to uncover in this survey, we do use it as a guide to inform our clients on what they can do and we can do for them to position their openings to be the most attractive for the largest pool of job seekers.



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