As scarcity in the talent market persists, employees aren’t hesitating to take the opportunity to jump ship. Job-switching no longer retains the same stigma it has had in the past, and the practice is becoming more commonplace as offers improve and we continue to transition to the gig-based economy. This willingness to job-hop creates a challenge for employers—and an opportunity for recruiters.
Though employees are more likely to take the leap these days, it doesn’t mean they are going through a big job transition for no reason. People leave because they are dissatisfied, and they take offers because they see greener pastures ahead. What aspect of the job ultimately pushes them to make the change, though? Studies show that work-life balance is a major contributor in employee decisions to stay or go.
Why is work-life balance so important?
According to one study, work-life balance issues account for 28% of employee departures, however the statistics may be even higher. Flexible work schedules and the ability to work remotely are huge contributors to maintaining a successful work-life balance, and a Yoh survey confirms their importance in retaining employees. The study returned a result of 42% of employees saying they would leave their current job for a more flexible work environment.
This is startling when you consider that nearly a quarter of workers claim their jobs interfere with their relationships with their children and significant other. That is a sizable chunk of the workforce that is at risk for departure (or that could be free for the taking).
Not the benefits you want, but the benefits you need
As the hiring game gets more competitive, expectations are growing for employers to provide flexible scheduling and other benefits that promote work-life balance. Even the retail industry is increasing benefits due to its problems with retention; Walmart, Lowes, and Starbucks are all offering paid parental leave to even their hourly employees.
When vying for talent using work-life balance, be sure to showcase your truly valuable benefits. Don’t make the mistake of throwing in every trendy office perk you can offer. 73% of employees say they would not leave their job for on-site gyms, daycare services, game rooms, or other office-lifestyle enhancing perks.
Providing benefits such as flexible work hours, parental leave, and remote work options are vital to retaining and attracting employees. This is especially true as workers progress in their lives and careers, becoming more valuable to your company and more established in their personal relationships. Providing long-term benefits, such as career paths that don’t require relocation, is a way to attract and retain talent for the future.
Don’t stop there
Having benefits available is a great way to get talent in the door, but in order to keep that talent, employers have to take things a step further. Offering PTO and flexible work is not enough on its own; the company culture has to support the use of these benefits. In one study, Science Daily found that 40% of respondents believed that using their PTO would jeopardize their careers and slow advancement at their company.
If employees do not feel free to use the benefits provided to them, the benefit of retainment is lost for the employer. These workers are just as likely to jump ship for a company with a better-perceived company culture; one that they feel will support them in both their lives and careers. It is therefore important to listen to employee feedback for guidance on how to retain workers for the long term and improve work-life balance at your organization.
Emphasis on work-life balance will mean more investment in your employees’ personal well-being. In the end, however, you’ll have a less stressed, more productive workforce and a company culture that will attract high quality candidates.