See Ya’ Later: Survey Finds 73% of North American Employees Open to Pursuing New Opportunities Elsewhere

Just like there is always going to be some level of unemployment even during white hot economic booms, there are always going to be some employees who, for a variety of reasons ranging from personal to professional, are interested in packing up their plant, mug and kid’s finger-painting masterpiece, and setting sail for another organization.

However, a survey by Ceridian has revealed that it’s not just some employees who are open or eager to make a change — it’s a whopping 73% of them. That leaves only 27% of employees who have no interest in an opportunity outside of their current company (at least, for now).

Thankfully for employers, these findings don’t point to a reality in which nearly 3 in 4 employees spend several hours a week scouring job boards, sending off-the-record messages to LinkedIn connections, and brushing up on their answer to the evil “tell me about your biggest weakness” interview question. Rather, about 3 in 10 (29%) of survey respondents disclosed that they were actively pursuing a new team. The remaining 44%, however, admitted to being open about leaving if they were approached with a compelling offer.

So, how do employers keep their best and brightest vs. lose them to the competition? Mercer’s 2018 Global Talent Trends study highlights three factors that matter most to current and prospective employees — and none of them have to do with dialing up salary:

  1. Permanent Flexibility: Most employers these days offer some variation of flex work, such as letting employees occasionally work from home; especially during bouts of bad weather or traffic chaos. However, the study found that employees want more than an occasional, ad hoc approach that might be available one month, but not the next. Instead, they want permanent flexibility that supports multiple options, such as telecommuting, flexible schedules, and unlimited PTO provided they get their work done and meet all other mutually acceptable obligations.
  1. Commitment to Health and Wellbeing: Employees easily see through superficial, informal ovations about “promoting employee wellness” — and the perception leaves them deeply unimpressed. Instead what they want, and what the most employee-centric organizations deliver, is a clear commitment to employee health and wellbeing, which is expressed in practical and relevant programs and services that boost physical, emotional and (of increasing importance and value) financial wellness. 
  1. Working with a Purpose: While foosball tables and popcorn machines are certainly welcome, in the big picture what employees want isn’t diversion: it’s purpose. That is, they want to feel a positive emotional connection to their organization — which goes beyond focusing on what work is done, and embraces how and why work is done. 

The Bottom Line

On today’s hyper-competitive business landscape, having the right people — and keeping them on the roster — is vital to short-term success, and long-term survival. Considering that 73% of employees wouldn’t be heartbroken (and some would be elated) to ply their craft elsewhere, this means organizations shouldn’t just want to become an employer of choice. Frankly, they need to.

Learn More

To learn more about measurably increasing employee engagement in your organization, and attracting future talent to drive you forward, contact the PIVOTAL team today. 

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