Working arrangements were cited by 33 percent as the highest priority if they were to move to a new job, WTW survey finds.

More than half of UK respondents (58%) cited pay as a top reason they would look for a new job.

Two in five (43%) would leave for a pay increase of 5 percent or less.

One in five employees (22%) would even move to a new job for the same pay.

Pay is an important factor for employees, “but more and more we’re seeing job security and flexibility cited as key concerns for workers in their quest for career satisfaction,” says Work & Rewards Leader at WTW, Alasdair Wood.

“Employers must look to the strength of their overall packages in relation to the needs of their staff. In many cases, this means enhancing health and retirement benefits, offering flexibility and focusing on staff wellbeing.”

 

Why are flexible working arrangements such a high priority?

The importance of flexible working arrangements has resulted after a change in work patterns, fuelled by the pandemic.

As companies kick-start their plans to bring their workforce back to the office, the survey found that most employees (59%) want to work remotely, either most of the time (34%) or in a hybrid arrangement that splits their time (25%).

Only 41 percent would rather work onsite.

Those who want remote working arrangements are mostly women, younger people, and low-income workers.

However, the WTW survey also shows that younger people are concerned that remote working may have a negative impact on their career development, with many missing the social interaction at work.

Therefore, there are clear advantages and disadvantages to remote working.

In the survey, 71 percent of workers were shown to agree that working remotely has helped them achieve a better work-life balance. Also, 62 percent agree that their working resources meet their needs for remote working.

However, half of employees feel disconnected from their team while working from home and 39 percent fear that remote working will have a negative impact on career development.

 

What are the implications of this?

“The findings suggest that employees continue to job hunt at the same pace as last year and that the labour exodus is not yet over,” said Wood.

“There’s a pressure for employers to find ways to better meet their workers’ needs, particularly on issues such as wellbeing, engagement, skills development and career structure in order to tip the scales, so that employees choose to stay.”

To reduce the risk of losing employees to better career opportunities, employers need to adequately and rapidly address their worker’s wellbeing and financial needs.

With April marking Stress Awareness Month, now is a great opportunity for employers to amplify their employee wellbeing strategies.

“Against a backdrop of increasing uncertainty, it is little wonder so many of us are prioritising our mental wellbeing. Everyone deals with worry, anxiety and stress differently, so it’s important that, across workplaces, employers are creating environments that enable open dialogue. And, importantly, each of us should feel empowered to find those methods that work best for us and that aid our overall wellbeing,” says Mental Health First Aider, Bethan Dacey.

Addressing wellbeing, financial, and employee satisfaction concerns will help curb the tide of the Great Resignation.