In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, popular workplace trends such as “quiet quitting” and the Great Resignation have shed light on what employees prioritize in the workplace. From work-life balance to better pay and non-salary benefits, workers from 21 countries have been outlining this year what they expect from both current and future employers in YouGov’s Workforce Insights survey of tens of thousands of workers.
Amidst ongoing economic uncertainty, many employees question the potential to better their situation through a job change. In each of North America, Europe, and Latin America, nearly half of workers report being “very likely” to remain with their current employer for the next 12 months (50%, 49%, 50%, respectively). In the Asia-Pacific region, this drops to 38% of workers. However, about 60% of workers from each of North America, Europe, and Latin America say they would consider taking a job with a new employer for better compensation — compared to just 37% of workers in Asia-Pacific countries.
Despite the prominent role of salary in employment decisions, pay is not the sole focus of workers. Other non-salary benefits that employees seek include: health benefits such as medical and dental insurance, which was the non-salary benefit sought by the most workers in North America (68%) and Latin America (59%); paid time off, which was more popular in European countries (70%); and bonuses, whether annual or for performance, which was the No. 1 benefit in Asia-Pacific countries (49%). Paid sick leave and retirement benefits — such as 401k or 403b plans, pensions, and matched retirement contributions — are among the top five non-salary benefits wanted the most in every region.
One byproduct of the pandemic that many workers continue to prioritize is remote work, yet acceptance of fully remote work varies by region. When asked which work-from-home arrangements would be acceptable, nearly two-thirds of workers cite a hybrid schedule: 64% overall — and 62% or higher in each of Europe, North America, Asia-Pacific, and Latin America. However, there is more variation in acceptance of fully remote work arrangements: They are found acceptable by significantly more workers in North America (39%) than in Latin America (28%), Europe (27%), and Asia-Pacific countries (27%).
Workers may be faced with many opportunities and choices as they continue to navigate the post-pandemic workforce, including the decision to remain with their current employer or seek new employment opportunities. While salary is sure to be a key component in workers' decision making, many will take other factors into consideration. These include, but are not limited to, health benefits, time off, bonuses, retirement contributions, and flexible working arrangements. Employers already embracing these worker priorities are better positioned to retain current employees, because workers seeking improvement in these areas may be willing to seek employment elsewhere.
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Methodology: YouGov Workforce Insights is an annual survey of the labor force in 21 countries. A nationally representative sample of 1,500 to 2,000 adult citizens in each country who are part of the labor force are interviewed online. Respondents were selected from YouGov’s opt-in panel to be representative of the labor force in each market. A total of 42,000 interviews were conducted between March 2022 and July 31, 2022. The U.S. sample was weighted according to gender, age, race, and education based on the 2018 American Community Survey. The Belgium, Spain, Frace, Hungary, Italy, Netherlands, and Turkey samples were weighted according to gender, age, and education based on Eurobarometer 2019. Ireland was weighted according to gender, age, and education based on Eurobarometer 2018. Columbia was weighted according to gender, age, and education based on the Latin American Public Opinion Project 2017. Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Germany, India, Mexico, Poland, Malaysia and Philippines were weighted according to gender, age, and education based on Pew Global Attitudes 2015. Thailand was weighted according to gender, age, and education based on Pew Global Attitudes 2014. The United Kingdom was weighted according to gender, age, and education based on the Labour Force Survey 2016. The margin of error is approximately 0.5% for the entire sample.