Benefits and Compensation, Recruiting

An Employee Perspective on Workplace Trends

New research from Paychex sought to learn what employees, not employers, have to say about what shapes an organization. The research offers a useful perspective for any HR professional or recruiter that wonders what jobseekers are looking for when it comes to certain employment trends like benefits and retirement, pay equity, ghosting, and more.


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Employees are split on the most complicated aspect of making annual benefit elections: 29% say it’s keeping up with plan changes; 28% say it’s trying to predict personal and family needs; and 28% say it’s evaluating all of the providers and plan options. For women, trying to predict personal and family needs when making benefits selections is the number one most complicated aspect of the process at 33%. That ranks third for men at 24%.


More than half (51%) of employees feel very confident in their retirement savings, but 25% of those add the caveat that their confidence is dependent on Social Security remaining intact. This confidence increases as employees get older:  48% of workers age 18-34 are confident in their retirement savings, 51% ages 35-49, and 58% of those 50-65.

Pay Equity

Nearly half (48%) of employeesregardless of gendersay they have expressed verbal or written concern to their current employer that their current rate of pay was not equitable to another employee with a similar role and responsibilities at least once during their career. Seventy-seven percent of men are confident that their employer is auditing employee pay for gender equity, while slightly fewer (74%) women say the same.

HR Technology

Seventy-one percent of employees agree that they expect employers to provide them with a high level of employee self-service that allows them to accomplish various HR tasks (update address, enter life event, fill out tax forms, report hours, manage retirement, etc.) on their own. And 85% expect such self-service applications to provide a simple, intuitive user experience, similar to the consumer apps frequently used in their personal lives.

Workplace Ghosting

When asked if they had ever “ghosted” (leaving a current job or not reporting for a new job without informing the employer) from a current or potential job, 27% of employees said they had. Younger workers are much more likely to have ghosted than their older counterparts. Of those aged 18-34 and 35-49, 33 and 30%, respectively, admitted ghosting, compared to only seven percent of employees who are 50-65 years old.

Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR)

Working for an organization that is socially responsible (caring about the impact the business and its employees have on things like the environment and the well-being of the local community or region) is important to workers regardless of age. Ninety-five% of those aged 18-34, and 94% of those 35-49, agree that it’s important for their employer to be socially responsible. That%age dips slightly to 90% for those aged 50-65.
“CSR is an important driver in attracting and retaining talent for companies today,” said Laurie Zaucha, Paychex vice president of HR and Organizational Development. “More than ever before, candidates research prospective employers before applying and are looking for organizations whose values align with theirs.”

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