The traditional employer value proposition has failed. Today, just 29% of functional leaders say they have all of the talent they need in their workforce. Safe to say, what businesses have to offer candidates is falling short.
Right now, most businesses are struggling to attract and retain talent. High vacancies, low unemployment, the great resignation, and a vast digital skills gap have compounded to reshape and complicate the hiring market.
Never has the Employee Value Proposition (EVP) been more integral for attracting and retaining talent. In light of the changing jobs market, talented candidates are likely receiving more interviews and offers than ever. Candidates are considering more than just what the role requires of them. They want to know what the employer can do for them.
For those who weren’t on the frontline during the pandemic, remote working provided the opportunity to reevaluate what matters. Some people may have discovered they prefer working from home. That, minus the commute, they can fit in a new exercise class. Or, with less time at the office, they can spend more time with their children.
With plenty of job vacancies and competitive wages, many employees will feel empowered to switch jobs if their current employer doesn’t offer what they need. So how can you create an EVP that engages new and existing staff in a post-pandemic world?
What people value changes throughout their lives. But global crises like the pandemic can force people to reassess what they value most.
Many people have suffered while so much of normal life stalled. An EVP fit for the post-pandemic world will nurture employees, and provide them with the opportunities and experiences they missed out on during the pandemic peak.
All of this points to the idea that employee value propositions created before the pandemic are probably no longer relevant.
The first thing employers should feature in their value proposition is purpose. According to research by McKinsey, 89% of employees from every level of the workplace want purpose in their lives. That makes it an employer’s job to provide it for their staff – or risk losing talent.
It’s really important to define how your people can contribute to the bigger picture. Whether that’s the societal impact they make, or how their efforts impact profits. That goes for new candidates and existing employees who might fall out of touch with the business from time to time.
People are seeking meaningful work. When employees believe in the purpose of the organisation they work for, they find meaningfulness in their job. Many of us have realised how valuable our time is over the past few years – and we’re keen to spend it wisely.
Technology can play a vital role here too. By embracing digital tools that automate tedious tasks, you can free up your employees to focus on more meaningful work. Research shows that knowledge workers who are dissatisfied with the technology they use for work feel less happy and engaged with their work, and are more likely to feel burned out.
Development opportunities are also critical to an effective EVP. This is equally as important for retention as it is attraction. As we explored in our latest white paper, 94% of employees would stay with their employer longer, if they invested in learning and development. This suggests businesses lose talent, simply because they don’t nurture it.
Worse still, as we face a deepening talent gap, you could end up losing the people who (with a few extra courses) could fill more technical roles.
Of course, as your talented employees grow more experienced and move around the business, recognition and reward become paramount. Your EVP needs to indicate the rewards you offer for good work, and how your company recognises that work.
Mostly because we all love to be praised when we get something right. But also because defining what ‘good’ looks like from the outset helps employees align their efforts with a clear goal. Recognition and rewards can incentivise focused, high-value work if your team understands what’s required to achieve them.
Not so long ago, work was something you did in exchange for a paycheck, and maybe some benefits. Employers hired people who created value for their business, and then everyone went home at the end of the day.
During the pandemic, the lines between life and work blurred. Instead of fighting this, employers need to embrace this connection. People want jobs that align with their values, ambitions, and life outside of the job. Now, adding value isn’t just the employee’s responsibility – bosses need to do their bit too.
Because ultimately, a great EVP pays off. And a bad one costs a fortune. Employees who enjoy purposeful work, with opportunities to develop and rewards for their hard work are far more likely to continue putting in the hours for your company.