Money still matters when it comes to worker satisfaction
With all of the challenges faced today by employers, managing employee turnover is top of mind for many as workers explore new career paths.
According to a Willis Towers Watson (WTW) report, salary, training, cash incentives and the all-important flexibility are all being dangled as important ways to keep a lid on the mass exodus to talent.
Eighty-six per cent are offering high wages to new candidates and a further 81 per cent are giving out signing bonuses to attract more workers, found the survey.
“Employers are leaving no stones unturned in their battle to find and keep talent,” says Lesli Jennings, North America leader for work, rewards and careers at WTW.
“While making enhancements to compensation programs can support employers’ immediate recruitment and retention efforts, employers recognize they will need to pull levers in addition to compensation and reinforce a connection to the overall employee experience.”
Almost half of those firms surveyed (44 per cent) are boosting overall salary budgets, while 23 per cent reported they have already done so to fight the “great resignation,” says WTW.
But those who do so should keep some things in mind around future wage ranges, as things will inevitably change.
“While talent challenges may seem especially acute now, employers must consider the long-term implications of their actions, particularly around the sources of funding for higher compensation and concerns over internal equity between rewards for new hires and rewards for employees of longer standing,” says Lori Wisper, leader for work and rewards global solutions, WTW.
For those who are looking elsewhere, salary considerations continues to rate highly, according to another survey done by ADP.
Eighty-eight per cent say compensation is the most important factor and almost one-quarter (27 per cent) of employees are saying they have received a boost in pay during the past six months.
But according to an expert at ADP, organizations would do well to expand their offerings away from only financial considerations.
“While many find themselves in a new job, employers also need to put the focus on those who stayed in their roles. It’s now time for the ‘great recognition’ and to build a culture of appreciation,” says Ed Yuen, vice president of strategy and HR outsourcing at ADP Canada.
Salary based on location?
Some companies are taking a hard look at salary ranges in light of the new reality, found another report from WorldatWork, and 13 per cent are even considering adjusting wages based on geography.
“Geographic pay policies have existed for many years but in the past were more about an organization’s multiple physical work locations rather than where the work was being performed, including employees’ homes, like with remote work,” says Alicia Scott-Wears, WorldatWork director for total rewards content.
“With the increase in remote work over the past two years, these philosophies and policies have required more attention and communication.”
Happy workers use emojis
For organizations looking for anything to help them in their quest to keep staff happy and productive, a university study came up with a novel and quirky way to monitor employee sentiment: look to the emojis.
By developing a machine learning model to track emoji use, researchers found that people who use emojis in the work-related communications are much less likely to drop out compared to people who don’t use emojis.
On the flip side, the study discovered that software developers (the focus of this research) who never used emojis are three times more likely to drop out of remote work, says Xuan Lu, research fellow at the School of Information at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor.
The group speculated that for those folks who rely on these colourful and sometimes playful add-ons, they might actually truly signal how they are feeling about their work.
“For example, maybe they are more happy or maybe they are more willing to express themselves. And we find that people who use the emojis… are indeed happier than those people who don’t use emojis,” says Lu.
Emojis can also help manage the conversation and strengthen the social bonds between coworkers, she says, and “serve as a good channel for them to express their emotions.”