A recent Glassdoor survey revealed that adults in the UK now place company culture above salary when it comes to job satisfaction. Over three in four (77 percent) UK adults would consider a company’s culture before applying to a job and well over half (57 percent) of UK adults say company culture is more important than salary for job satisfaction.
Interestingly, while the majority of UK adults place culture above salary when it comes to job satisfaction, company culture matters significantly more among younger adults. Two-thirds of millennials (18 – 34-year-olds) place culture above salary when it comes to job satisfaction, compared to just over half (52 percent) of those above 55 years old. A separate study from Universum this week also highlighted the importance of meaning at work: 43% of students said that one of their top career goals is to be dedicated to a cause or to feel that they are serving a greater good. This is exceeded only by job stability and work-life balance in terms of what young people are looking for in their career.
In such a competitive job market, it’s important to appreciate that today’s young adults cannot simply be ‘bought’ by generous salaries and perks. They have particularly high standards when it comes to businesses’ values, morals, and ethics and how these are expressed within the workplace. People expect employers to invest in creating an attractive, authentic culture and to behave with integrity. Employees will in turn reward businesses with loyalty; almost two in three adults (63 percent) say their company’s culture is one of the main reasons for staying in their job. On the flip side, employers would vote with their feet with seven in ten (70 percent) saying they would look for a job elsewhere if their current company’s culture deteriorates.
Coinciding with the survey, Glassdoor’s Economic Research team analyzed millions of reviews shared voluntarily and anonymously by employees on Glassdoor and found that the culture and values of an organization are the strongest predictors of employee satisfaction in the UK. Culture and values of a company are the main factors, accounting for 22 percent of this pie; quality of senior leadership is the second strongest predictor, accounting for 21 percent; and career opportunities is the third strongest predictor, accounting for 18 percent of the total.
Where does the employer brand come into this?
How and what a business communicates – internally and externally – will directly impact their brand and people’s perceptions of that company as a potential employer. Businesses must ensure all their channels – be it website, social media, Glassdoor profile – are aligned with the same overarching message and mission and that a consistent, authentic culture comes across.
Glassdoor’s report also revealed the importance for employers to be mission-minded. An overwhelming 89 percent of UK adults believe it’s important for an employer to have a clear mission and purpose. Almost eight in 10 (77 percent) adults in the UK would consider a company’s mission and purpose before applying for a job, whilst their company’s mission is one of the main reasons that 60 percent of employees stay in their job.
A common misperception among many employers today is that pay, perks, benefits and work-life balance are among the top factors driving employee satisfaction in organizations. Glassdoor’s report, combined with an increase in purpose-led causes springing up across the globe, has clearly demonstrated that this is no longer the case. Businesses should instead ensure they have a clear mission and invest in creating an unbeatable culture that is evident at all touchpoints of the employer brand. Those that do will not only attract but also keep hold of talent.
About the author: Jo Cresswell, careers analyst at Glassdoor, one of the world’s largest job and recruiting sites.