Survey highlights shifting benefit priorities in the workforce

A new global study by the Futurestep division of Korn Ferry highlights the intense competition companies are facing to find qualified candidates, and gives insight into the shifting top priorities of those candidates. In Part One of The Talent Forecast, Futurestep’s global survey of more than 1,100 hiring professionals, 54% said it’s harder to find qualified talent compared to just one year ago. The same study found that identifying people with the right skills in a rapidly changing market is the top business issue impacting recruitment.

Changes in attitudes toward benefits. When asked what the top reason was candidates chose a company 5 years ago, respondents cited “benefits packages.” “Five years ago, the world was still reeling from the Great Recession, mass layoffs, and all-around jitters,” said William Sebra, global operating executive, Futurestep. “It only makes sense that candidates felt the need for a stable paycheck plus healthcare and retirement benefits. Today, workers are generally moving beyond basic needs to different priorities.”

However, The No. 1 reason candidates choose one job over another today is “company culture,” Futurestep survey respondents said. “Millennials are absolutely looking for culture and fit,” said MacDonald. “Gen X, on other hand, are more interested in taking their skill set to a place where they can make an impact.”

Flexible benefits. When asked what would be the No. 1 reason a candidate would choose one job over another five years from now, the highest percentage of respondents chose “flexible working.” According to MacDonald, a flexible environment—from working remotely to flex hours is becoming common across many industries. In addition, businesses are seeing changes due to the rise of the contingent professional workforce, or “gig economy.” “Instead of looking for full-time employment, talented, high-demand people will take contingent assignments where they can showcase their unique skills and talents, then complete the project and move to the next gig,” Sebra said.

“No matter the region or position for which candidates are being sought, the stakes are high,” said Sebra. “Organizations that attract the best talent will be best-positioned to achieve their goals and succeed in today’s challenging and fast-changing business environment.”


Visit our News Library to read more news stories.