The COVID-19 pandemic forever changed the way we work. While many organizations were well on their way to embracing the world of flexible work, others were thrust into wholly unfamiliar territory as “non-essential” businesses had to adapt to shelter-in-place restrictions.
But this abrupt shift changed more than just organizational operations; it shed light on what employees really value in a work environment. In 2021, job candidates expect more than adequate monetary compensation.
If you’re looking to incentivize talented professionals to join your company this year and beyond, pay attention to these top five factors candidates consider before joining a company today:
1. Flexible Work Policy
As 2020 proved to organizations across the world, remote work can still be productive work. Plus, it allows for people with demanding external obligations to participate in the workforce.
According to a recent Citrix study, 88% of knowledge workers (workers whose main capital is knowledge) rank a flexible work policy as a major deciding factor in their job selection. As remote or hybrid work policies become more standardized, candidates expect organizations to uphold a certain degree of flexibility.
2. Emphasis on Work/Life Balance
Related to flexible work policies, work/life balance is another major factor in the job selection process. In the same study, researchers found that over three-quarters of surveyed participants indicated that work/life balance was more important than proximity to a job’s location or even salary—if it meant spending more time with family.
“Organizations that respect the delineation between work hours and time off tend to fare better with employee retention—and appear more attractive to talented job candidates,” Says Abby Prince, CSS ProSearch Managing Director.
3. Comprehensive Benefits Packages
Especially after a global health crisis, healthcare, 401(k)s and even lifestyle stipends have proven extremely valuable to most workers. According to a recent IBM study, a more comprehensive benefits package is a top employee request across organizations.
As the pandemic shifted employee priorities further towards physical—and mental—well-being, organizations need to align themselves with these priorities in order to attract and retain good hires.
4. Professional Development Opportunities
Another high priority for jobseekers in 2021 is an organization’s commitment to employees’ professional development. Gone are the days of working the same job for years on end; workplace investment is a two-way street.
In fact, the most successful organizations are those that provide their employees with opportunities to hone their skills and acquire new ones. Investment in employees’ professional development, providing opportunities for promotion and diversifying internal talent motivates current employees towards achievement—and attracts bright new minds.
5. An Inclusive and People-Centric Work Culture
Today more than ever, employees want their workplaces to be safe, inclusive environments that treat them like people—not cogs in a machine. Although many businesses have made substantial progress in this area, others are lagging behind.
Especially after a year like 2020, people want to work for companies that refuse to take them for granted. And part of cultivating a people-centric work culture includes emphasizing diversity and inclusion, along with a mission that speaks to the flourishing not only of employees—but the surrounding community.
Are You an Attractive Company?
In 2021, salary is no longer “king” in the world of job hunting. The pandemic shifted employees’ priorities in unprecedented ways—and provided a context that further legitimized these priorities.
Today, it’s up to organizations to consider these factors as they determine their incentivization—and retention— strategies.
CSS ProSearch is a sales recruiting firm that places top sales and marketing talent for growing businesses in the healthcare, technology and consulting verticals.
Our sales recruiters take a consultative approach to recruiting, acting as a true partner in the success of both our clients and our talent. With over 50 years of combined experience, our team combines best-in-class recruiting practices, technology, research and innovative approaches to deliver exceptional service with every engagement. Learn more here.