The shift in career attitudes has been quantified by recent survey results from Universum’s 2013 IDEAL Canadian Employer Rankings – 64% of business undergrads, and 60% engineering undergrads say that work-life balance is their most important career goal. According to these undergrads (29,000 of them were surveyed), Google and the Government of Canada are the most preferred employers among business students, and for engineering students, the former remains the same and number two is Microsoft.
These 3 organizations clearly have their pick of the best when it comes to recruiting fresh talent. While not all businesses have the resources or flexibility to compete with many of the employee perks found in the public sector or at giant tech companies, there are still ways to make the workplace experience more enjoyable for employees, which can in turn attract more talent.
“Team-building” is still important! Whether for business or pleasure, team activities that take place out of the office can break up the monotony of the day-in day-out office experience, strengthen bonds, and re-invigorate teams.
Due to the business demands of certain employers and industries, it may not be possible to offer employees the 100% work-from-home option, but giving employees the autonomy to balance their own schedules for doctor’s appointments, picking up kids from school, etc., can go a long way towards keeping the employee happy and empowered.
3. Food and drink
While not every organization can afford catered gourmet meals every day, it is becoming the norm in certain industries. The occasional pizza day (ah, elementary school memories!), catered lunch meeting, or lemonade (or beer and wine) social can go a long way.
4. Office décor and amenities
Options for employees to de-stress or take a break are becoming a must. Employee lounges, ping pong and pool tables, and video game rooms are popular. For more formal work spaces, the simple act of hanging up bright and beautiful art can help energize a drab workspace.
5. Benefits, bonuses and other incentives
If employees are eligible for bonuses and/or have an opportunity to obtain equity in the company, their motivation and accountability increase. Parental leave top ups, and a generous, well-managed group pension plan are celebrated (often vocally) by employees.
Not every company can afford to serve three gourmet meals a day and provide weekly spa services to its employees, but the smaller perks can add up to a very desirable workplace, which has become priority number one for a new generation of talent.