What Employees Want

Seven Things Employees Want from Their Employers

4 min read
Lynsey May Sutherland
Lynsey Sutherland

You may have a good idea of what you want from your employees, but are you confident you know what they want from you? We’ve got some handy insights into what employees are actually looking for – and how you can provide it. 

What do employees look for in a company? 

Research from Gartner has revealed that employees are increasingly looking to feel seen and valued as a person, not a cog in the machine.

The study found that 82% of employees say it’s important for their organisation to see them as individuals rather than employees. However, only 45% believed their organisation sees them that way. 

This disconnect can leave employees feeling underappreciated and dissatisfied. It also shows just how important that personal approach is, how much employees care about it and why great leaders focus on people, not numbers

What do employees value most? 

You might be surprised when it comes to what things employees value most about a role – especially when you realise it’s not all about money and status. 

Research from Reed found that most employees valued their colleagues more than their salary when it came to job satisfaction, with 45% saying it’s the people they work with they care about most. Next on the list was flexibility, at 40%. If you want a strong Employee Value Proposition (EVP), you need to look at the unique offerings you bring to the table for your employees.

What do employees want in the workplace? 

So how do these values and preferences play out when it comes to the practicalities of working life? Here are a few examples of what employees actually want. 

Robust recognition and rewards 

Who doesn’t want to feel as though their work is being noticed? Showing appreciation for your employees lets them know that you are paying attention and that you value the skills and time they are sharing with you.

A robust recognition and reward program lets you celebrate everything from small personal achievements to massive wins for the whole organisation. The more appreciation you show, the more engaged and motivated employees tend to feel. 

A genuinely good work-life balance

While encouraging a good work-life balance has been getting a lot of airplay in recent years, the reality can look very different. Companies that genuinely promote and invest in a healthy workplace for all employees can be a very attractive prospect.

Research by HR and payroll software provider Ciphr found that 57% of employees valued flexible working hours most highly, with 27% also voting for flexible working locations. Allowing a hybrid set-up or remote working opportunities can make it easier for people to balance their responsibilities and is a good step in creating a people-first environment. 

Job stability and security 

You may not be able to control the security of a role entirely, but you can massively influence how employees feel about it. Sometimes, when leaders and managers try to conceal or avoid concerns, they can accidentally create worry around job safety. 

Anxiety can creep in when there’s no transparency about how an organisation plans to deal with any setbacks or issues. Offer reassurance when possible and ensure everyone understands the various processes you have in place. 

Strong and frequent communication 

Organisations that practice effective communication leave employees feeling calmer and more confident. Knowing how to share important information with the whole team and opening up opportunities for everyone to have their say makes somewhere a more desirable place to work.   

People want to be heard. They also want to know that they’ll be updated with any essential information. If you can offer both, you will automatically be the kind of organisation people want to be involved with. 

An inclusive workforce

Employees are also being increasingly vocal about their desire for an inclusive workforce. There’s a real desire to see equality and fairness being reflected in a company’s standards and practices. 

If you go out of your way to create an environment where everyone feels safe expressing their opinions and ideas, you’ll create the kind of atmosphere employees value. Diversity and inclusion are far more than buzzwords; they define factors in how employees see your company. 

Clear goals

Another thing that employees value is knowing that they are putting their effort into the right things. No one wants to be left worrying that they’re wasting their time or failing to do what’s expected of them. Laying out expectations clearly can also be a huge reassurance for any employees who’re wondering whether they’re living up to the role. 

Work together to set clear goals and give your employees an experience they can really value. 

Career growth and development  

Be sure to have strong plans in place for employee development. There are few better ways to boost overall satisfaction than to show your staff that you’re invested in them and their continued growth. 

Upskilling your employees through training, guidance and practical tasks not only improves your own bottom line, but it’s also a show of faith that many employees value.   

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Mo is an employee recognition and engagement platform that can help leaders improve collaboration and morale, reduce employee churn and drive change. 

Our platform creates a vibrant culture by developing team habits, encouraging people to celebrate success, recognise results and appreciate colleagues.

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