New research from recruitment & HR services provider, Randstad, shows Australians are more focused this year on receiving better pay and benefits from their employer rather than feeling secure in their jobs. 

The research findings released ahead of the third annual Randstad Award are a complete turn on last year's figures.

People placed long-term job security and an employer's financial health as the two most important factors when selecting a workplace.

This year, receiving a competitive salary and benefits is now the most critical factor, according to one in five (20%) Australians - up from only 11% in 2012. The number of Australians valuing long-term job security has fallen nine points, from 26% to 17%.

A good work-life balance is now the third most important factor, with almost three times more Australians (11%) viewing it as the most significant factor compared to just 12 months ago.

The Randstad Award employer branding research includes responses from 7,000 Australians of working age and points to an opening of the job market as people start to look for better workplace benefits.

It has been raised that organisations need to realise the last few years have been challenging, not only for their business but for their employees.

as a result of recent challenging economic conditions, people have had to manage increased workloads, reduced resources, smaller budgets, and heightened expectations of workplace performance with little to no employee benefits.

Management must be mindful of carefully managing future performance and compensation expectations to ensure their employees remain happy, loyal and engaged by continuously recognising, rewarding and retaining their top talent.

As 2013 progresses, employees increasingly seek rewards and recognition for their loyalty and output. For a large number of businesses in Australia, 2013 will be the year of needing to recognise and nurture their employees.

The results show that Australians are open to accepting attractive employment benefits relevant to them. Australians are beginning to prioritise their wants and needs within a work context, placing these as requisites when undergoing their job search. This poses an advantage for businesses, highlighting that despite the importance of salary, workers are also willing to receive alternate benefits if a pay increase is not possible at the time.

Businesses must be willing to take a different approach to reward their employees for ensuring they are continuously engaged and satisfied with their position at work. Management must learn to listen to what their employees deem important and focus more effort on fulfilling these needs. Businesses who don't adapt may lose talent, their intellectual property and thus, relationships with customers, consequently setting them back six months or more.

Employees may be unlikely to wait around if they feel a better offer elsewhere or if their loyalty and hard work are not adequately rewarded. This can lead to more movement in the market, and businesses may have to work harder to retain top talent.

Generally, organisations that are most attractive within an open labour market are those which invest in their employees and their unique selling points and continuously work toward developing their employer brand. These organisations will benefit from any move toward adopting alternative workplace benefits in place of pay increases when it is not a feasible option.

the search for australia's most attractive employer in 2013

The Randstad Awards, which reveal the most attractive places to work in Australia, are unique in this market – with the winner being decided by the public and organisations unable to nominate themselves or determine categories or criteria for entry. The winner is selected from Australia's most significant 150 employers (by employee size). For the first time this year, the Randstad Awards has opened up to include Federal Government agencies as part of the largest 150 organisations.

First launched in Belgium in 2000, the Randstad Awards will be hosted in 18 countries worldwide, including Australia, New Zealand, Canada, France, Spain and the Netherlands, capturing the perceptions of 160,000 potential job seekers.

The 2013 Randstad Award winner will be announced on 26th March at the Museum of Contemporary Art (MCA) in Sydney. 

International employer brand strategist Brett Minchington will be the keynote speaker at the event. It will be attended by executives from many of Australia's largest 150 companies, including Qantas, ABC, Newcrest Mining, Virgin Australia, Coca-Cola, Lion, Nestle, Computershare and WorleyParsons.

the top three

most attractive factors for aussie job seekers in 2013 are:

Rank Most important factor 2013 (%) 2012 (%) 2011 (%)
Competitive salary & employee benefits
Long-term job security
Good work-life balance

The findings from the Randstad Award employer branding research for Australia for 2013 will be revealed on Wednesday, 27th March.

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