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, where people placed long-term job security and an employer’s financial health as the two most important factors when selecting a place to work. This year, receiving a competitive salary and benefits is now the most important 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% down to 17%.

A good work-life balance is now the third most important factor, with almost three times more Australians (11%) now 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, heightened expectations of workplace performance with little to no employee benefits

Management must be mindful in 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 are increasingly seeking reward and recognition for their loyalty and their output. For a large number of businesses in Australia, 2013 will be the year of needing to really recognise and nurture their employees.

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

Businesses must be willing to take a different approach to rewarding their employees in order to make certain 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 into satisfying these needs. Businesses who don’t adapt may find themselves losing talent, their intellectual property and thus, relationships with customers and consequently setting them back six months or more.

Employees may be unlikely to wait around if they feel there is a better offer elsewhere, or if their loyalty and hard work is not being 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, their unique selling points and continuously work toward developing their employer brand. It is these organisations that 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 totally 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 determined from the largest 150 employers in Australia (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 around the world including, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, France, Spain and the Netherlands capturing the perceptions of 160,000 potential jobseekers.

The 2013 Randstad Award winner will be announced on the 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 which 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 jobseekers in 2013 are:

Rank 

Most important factor

2013 (%)

2012 (%)

2011 (%)

1.

Competitive salary & employee benefits

20

11

14

2.

Long-term job security

17

26

15

3.

Good work-life balance

11

4

9

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