We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again: Salary matters to job seekers, but it’s not the only factor. A new report by Ceridian and Hanover Research reveals the top reasons that candidates start looking for new opportunities, and why they say yes.
What really matters to today’s job candidate? To effectively compete for top talent in an increasingly tight job market with unemployment rates sitting at less than 4%, employers must continually up the ante to attract and retain the right people.
To better understand the key drivers behind a successful recruitment strategy and experience, Ceridian partnered with Hanover Research to survey more than 1,600 recent hires – those who have started a new job within the last year in a full-time or part-time permanent position, as well as those who were offered a new job and turned it down – to explore these factors.
A key takeaway? Employees are looking for balance – and it’s up to employers to create a culture that promotes this balance in order to have a successful value proposition.
The key drivers that influence job seekers
The survey found that the factors that lead candidates to start looking for a new job are the same ones that influence them to say yes to an offer: salary, work-life balance, and job location.
The report also notes “the older the candidate, the more the ‘other’ factors beyond salary come into play when considering a role.” Some of these other drivers could include career changes, poor health, or bankruptcy.
Getting to “yes”
These same three factors are the reasons candidates turn down a job. It makes sense, since job location and work-life balance go hand-in-hand in today’s world of work. In the report, Ceridian’s Chief People and Culture Officer Lisa Sterling explains that the trick for employers and employees is in balancing the imbalance – and one way is by thinking strategically about people’s desire for flexibility.
This means, for example, providing tools for employees to work remotely instead of having to spend hours commuting. “Progressive organizations who will win the war on talent will allow people to have that flexibility,” she says.
Word of mouth matters most
Word of mouth is a significant influencer when it comes to candidates determining whether a company is the right fit for them. In fact, 68% of respondents said that they consider friends, family, and colleagues as very or extremely influential sources when trying to determine if a prospective employer is a good fit. Further, 75% of respondents said that current employees of a potential employer are key influencers in determining fit.
These findings highlight that it’s critical to have a strong and consistent employer brand. If people are talking about your company, you want to make sure that they’re clearly communicating your culture, values, and what you stand for as an organization. One way to do that – while taking advantage of word of mouth in the recruiting process – is to encourage employee advocacy.
Sterling notes in the report that advocacy only works when it comes from a place of authenticity, which can’t be faked or forced – it has to spring from a strong culture. “When people are proud of who you are, what you do, and what you stand for as a business, the advocacy happens naturally,” she says.
She adds that recruiters and managers need to be able to tell the company’s story to help candidates see a cultural fit. “We need to better communicate the larger company mission and culture, its values, behaviors, and what the leadership looks like,” she says.