Our latest LinkedIn survey found that exactly 1 in 2 employees would like an increase in salary – this was the single most important change that they’d like to see right now, over and above other key factors such as training and development, recognition and support from their manager and company.
Assessing and ascertaining employee satisfaction is always very subjective and the needs of individuals will vary depending on many factors such as age, longevity with company, opportunities for progression and organisational culture. Monetary benefits and financial rewards have always been important and are the main reason why we turn up to work, so that they can enjoy the fruits of their labour. Given what has happened during the pandemic, with many having either been either been furloughed or experienced a salary reduction, it is not surprising that half would like a salary increase.
Training and development has also always been one of the most important motivators for employees as research shows that investing in your people leads to greater levels of engagement, loyalty and productivity. Many don’t feel recognised or valued and we know that the Millennial/Gen Z generations will consider look at for example a company’s record on corporate social responsibility (CSR), the environment and sustainability.
What we also found interesting from our latest survey is that only 8% of employees felt that support from their line manager and company was the most important factor for them at work. This was somewhat surprising given that our new remote working way of life and the potential for isolation and separation from our colleagues and friends. If ever there was a time to feel supported, then surely this would be it? Astonishingly, we also found that 2 in 3 managers never check in with their teams to see how they are feeling – only 14% of managers enquire regularly as to the wellbeing of their people.
Boosting retention rates
Flexible working has also always, at least in the past, been a bone of contention, with many employers expecting staff to work from an office with flexibility the preserve of the few. Following COVID, one of the big game changers has been that professionals have had to work remotely and organisations have realised that productivity hasn’t been affected. It is also abundantly clear that workers now want to continue partly in the office and partly remotely – indeed the vast majority, almost 7 in 10 (69%) want a hybrid working model moving forward.
But how happy are employees in their current roles? According to our research, just over 1 in 5 (21%) could be deemed as truly happy, revealing that they do not want to leave their employer. However, while 36% were happy but were looking to move, 37% told us that they want to go asap. While most employees will always keep an eye out for other opportunities, we perhaps would not expect such a higher number to be looking for a way out.
So, what can we conclude? Firstly, the rise in flexible working and the focus on mental health have been two of the plus points to come out of this terrible period in our present day history. Yet, with many looking to leave, employers shouldn’t take anything for granted and they must ensure that they can retain their best people. This won’t always be possible but by talking to their employees, investing in their development, training managers on wellbeing, they can make big strides in this direction. And with skill shortages an ongoing problem, organisations can ill afford to let people go.
Retention has always been a challenge. But isn’t it time that organisations rose to that challenge?