Hiring & Recruiting, Strategic HR

Survey: Job Seekers More Interested in Money and Career vs. Culture

A new survey found that employees are more interested in “career pathing and professional growth”—and making more money—than workplace culture, chemistry, and perks.  This was among the findings of Addison Group’s fourth annual Workplace Survey, conducted among 1,000 white collar employees across all industries.

Employees who are currently seeking jobs reported that the most important factors in a new position are salary, employer loyalty and office location, according to the survey. Notably, while conventional wisdom is that employees quit managers as opposed to jobs, only 17% of respondents identified as job seekers were doing so because they disliked their manager.

“Salary remains vital when it comes to retaining and attracting candidates, while bad managers might not push away employees as much as previously thought,” Tom Moran, CEO of Addison Group, said in a press release announcing the survey results. “Based on our respondents’ sentiments, it seems that today’s job market is less about staying and building something at a company, and much more about building a career for yourself.”

Meanwhile, 80% of respondents said they would sacrifice workplace perks for the right job—and nearly just as many (76%) believe that skills are more important than personality when hiring someone (again speaking to the overall finding that culture/chemistry isn’t as important as career).

“Workplace sentiments are in constant flux, and this year, it seems that job seekers have reoriented their focus squarely on the more transactional elements of the workplace – gaining new skills, career pathing, and overall professional development,” said Moran. “To hire and retain the best talent, we need to understand as an industry how to accommodate this desire.”

Interestingly, the survey found that 7 out of 10 active job seekers were satisfied at work, though non-job seekers were 22% more satisfied with their career path than job seekers.  Job seekers were also much more likely to consider their job as “just a job” versus their non-job seeking counterparts (84% to 41%)

The survey identified those most likely to be Job seekers as younger, with nearly half (48%) below the age of 35, with an average income of $77,200.

Full survey results are available from Addison Group.