Is Your Job Offer Competitive Enough?

As the Great Resignation gathers pace across North America, early signs show that UK candidates are set to follow suit. Here’s what employers should know.

Workers are challenging the status quo and pushing employers to evolve in more tangible ways than we’ve seen before. They want a better work-life balance, more meaningful input into their working arrangements, and the flexibility to choose their base.

Job vacancies in the UK are now soaring to an all-time high. Demand is outstripping supply, and companies are having to think of more persuasive ways to attract and maintain the staff they need.

In this climate, it’s never been more important to make sure your job offer is compelling. Employers who are unwilling to offer more than the bare minimum to prospective staff will find themselves struggling not only to attract high-quality candidates, but potentially any candidates at all.

Here are five things every employer needs to offer to be competitive in a candidate-driven market:

 

#1. FLEXIBLE WORKING HOURS

By far, the most important thing to today’s jobhunters is flexibility. It’s now more important to candidates than a pay rise. Every worker’s situation is unique; perhaps they could benefit from starting earlier or later to avoid rush hour traffic. Maybe they need to do the school run, or perhaps they feel more productive working from home a few days a week.

Even before the pandemic, progressive employers were moving away from the rigidity of specific working hours. In fact, after 26 weeks in any role, employees have a legal right to request flexible working. In today’s job market, employers who are set on enforcing set hours and outdated working arrangements will almost certainly miss out on good candidates.

 

#2. HOLIDAY ALLOWANCE

This is a big one. Some employers still only offer 20 days’ statutory holiday allowance, along with the eight Bank Holiday days we have here in England. That’s the absolute bare minimum a full-time worker is entitled to by law, so it’s nowhere near the realm of ‘competitive’.

We all deserve breaks throughout the year, along with the odd day off when needed. Employers who recognise that are looked on far more favourably by candidates; in fact, most employees won’t leave their existing jobs if it means a drop in holiday allowance – even for better pay.

To ensure your offer’s competitive, you’ll need to offer at least 25 days’ annual leave, as well as with Bank Holidays.

 

#3. TRAINING OPPORTUNITIES

It’s not always just about the money; an employer can offer a candidate a £5k pay rise over their existing role, but if there are no opportunities for future progression, that can be a deal-breaker.

Candidates know they need to keep evolving and updating their skills, so employers who provide clear routes to progression, or further CPD and training opportunities, will have a competitive edge over those who don’t.

 

#4. TANGIBLE BENEFITS

These days, it’s rarely enough to simply offer an above-the-minimum holiday allowance as a benefit. Candidates want to work for businesses who understand the things that matter most to them or who provide bonuses they couldn’t get elsewhere.

That includes employee perks like gym membership and shopping discounts, and the Cycle to Work Scheme, which can save staff almost 40% on the cost of bikes and cycling accessories. Health benefits such as private health insurance – particularly in the COVID era – are also increasingly important to prospective candidates.

 

#5. SALARY LEVELS

While we know that 51% of employees seek job security and flexible working arrangements over salary, that doesn’t mean employers can go in at the lowest end of the pay spectrum.

It’s easy to get into a mindset of keeping salaries at a certain level because that’s the way you’ve always done it. But if most other employers in your industry have evolved their pay schemes, there could be a basic salary expectation you’re no longer meeting.

Take solar panel installation jobs, for instance. An experienced PV installer seeking a permanent role can command anywhere between £28,000 and £45,000, depending on the level of experience and the skills required. If you’re offering £20-£25,000, candidates will quickly skip to the next role.

 

A&D Recruitment are specialists in recruitment for the renewable energy and building services industries. For more tips, visit our blog section or contact us today for a friendly, informal chat about how A&D Recruitment could help you fill your next role.

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