2nd February 2017

Recently there has been a lot of focus on work/life balance and the importance it plays in mental health and wellbeing but, when it comes to job satisfaction, does it really matter? What value do employees put on having a good work/life balance?

New research by Glassdoor indicates that it may not be as much of a priority as employers think. A survey of more than 615,000 Glassdoor users found that when it comes to job satisfaction work/life balance and salary were the least important factors receiving only 12.1% and 12.0% of the vote. The most important factor was culture and values (22.1%) with senior leadership coming a close second with 21.1% of the vote.

Work/life balance matters

The survey also looked at whether priorities changed as income rose, finding both work/life balance and salary became less important for those earning higher wages whereas career opportunities, culture and values and senior leadership all became more important.

work/life balance pay rises

Danny Clarke, Group Operations Director for the ELAS Group, says: “This study demonstrates that companies need to think again when it comes to engaging with employees and retaining top talent. People have become more knowledgeable about workplace culture and values, want to be proud of who they work for as well as feeling that what they do makes a difference and they’re part of something larger. You only need to look to the likes of Virgin, Google, Apple and American Express to see that engaging your employees is more than simply paying them more money.

Here are some things to consider when it comes to engaging and retaining employees:

  • How do you communicate? It’s important to be seen as a leader rather than just a boss. You should be more than just a name on an organisations chart
  • Lead by example – in order to raise standards you need to be able to set them. You are likely to have a vision for the department or company and it’s good to share that with the people who will help you deliver it. People like to know what role they play in the success of the company, it’s also a good way to assess whether or not your vision is realistic and deliverable
  • LISTEN to employees – don’t just speak at them, listen to what they have to say. Some of the best innovative ideas stem from your employees, you just need to hear them
  • Incentivise and reward…and I don’t just mean pay people more. Find out what makes your employees tick, what are their aspirations, desires, motivators remember not everyone will have the same. What does their future hold and how can they progress? Is there progression available? People are more aware of tax so want to companies to consider fringe benefits like childcare vouchers, health insurances and cycle to work schemes


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