- Employees are motivated most by money, according to the results of the second annual Business in the Northwest 2019 report by the Washington State University (WSU) Carson College of Business. While employees prefer pay over benefits, most business leaders believe employees want benefits and perks over beefier paychecks, the report found.
- Results also revealed that 41% of business leaders and 45% of workers agreed that a company's ability to navigate change hinges on its positive brand. Ninety-six percent of business leaders agreed that understanding and supporting their customers' values would enable them to maintain good reputations, WSU said.
- More than half of business leaders surveyed said their companies had a corporate social responsibility program, WSU said, but only 18% of employees were aware of their company had a program.
Although the WSU report focused on the business and employment climate in America's Pacific Northwest, the results relate to employment issues across regions and industries.
The report named money as the key motivator for employees, as has past research. A Glassdoor study revealed money as the No. 1 motivator for 67% of job seekers, for example. Workers in various studies have said they value career development opportunities, flexible work schedules, meaningful work, social responsibility and remote work options, as well. Some indicated a willingness to change jobs to attain these benefits and perks.
Emphasizing listening as part of organizational culture may help employers uncover what matters most to their workforces, and a positive company brand and culture are also critical for attracting and retaining new hires. A bad company reputation is a major deterrent for job hunters, whose access to online rating sites allows them to rule out employers with subpar rankings. HR leaders can drive their organizations' ethics initiatives, help eliminate unsavory practices, regularly monitor their companies' ratings and promote an intentionally-crafted brand during the recruitment process.