The past year has been a rollercoaster for the recruitment industry. The upside is that there have never been so many jobs and the downside has been a shortage of candidates applying for roles with people leaving their current jobs in droves. We’ve all seen the #greatresignation and the #greatreshuffle mentioned in the press and on social media.
In response to this, we were keen to gauge market sentiment and gain a deeper understanding of the current climate, so we surveyed our candidate base to get a better sense of what’s going on.
With the emergence of hybrid working, we were also keen to understand if candidates were happy with this type of flexibility or whether they still valued flex or a part-time working arrangement.
The results proved to be really enlightening. From a candidate perspective, it’s clear there’s a lot going through their minds right now, but one thing they are sure of is that they do not want to go back to the traditional office-based 9-5.
What are people thinking?
This is a time for reflection, with the majority of people currently reassessing their career options and, essentially, thinking more about what they want to do with their lives. After such a turbulent time, it’s hardly surprising.
What is your current job/employment situation?
It was also interesting to see an increase in self-employed candidates joining the CJ Talent community, which suggests a move to focusing on a more permanent arrangement or longer term contract work. However, what’s clear overall is that for those who are actively or considering moving jobs, their current or next role has to have a flexible or hybrid working arrangement.
What do people want?
Are you happy with being office-based or do you want hybrid working?
This result is a really significant barometer. 63% of those surveyed were happy with a hybrid working arrangement, while 26% wanted remote only.
Does a hybrid working arrangement work for you, or do you still need to work flexibly?
When we drilled won further and asked candidates their requirements regarding flexible working options, hybrid was still the preferred choice with:
- 48% happy with hybrid working
- 28% needed flexible working
- 17% required part-time
Opening up to permanent hybrid has the potential to be a win-win for all parties. A mixture of home and office working appears to offer candidates the right work-life balance, while employers can widen the talent pool to attract more candidates.
However, let’s not forget that, for some SMEs, a flexible or part-time arrangement means they can get senior level talent within their budget, not to mention the fact that there will always be candidates who need to work this way.
Opening up to permanent hybrid has the potential to be a win-win for all parties.
Essentially, what the survey is telling us is that people are making it clear they want flex, with hybrid working yet another option to add to the mix.
Applying for a new role
What’s causing candidates to think carefully about applying for a new role is flexibility. It’s even more valuable than salary. However, there is a sense of nervousness. Even though people are happy with hybrid, they need a cast iron assurance the new employer won’t renege on their agreement.
What would drive you to apply for a role in this current climate?
Flexibility is even more valuable than salary
What will you do if your current employer decides to go back to being solely office based?
This response speaks volumes. 80% of employees surveyed will start actively looking for another job if they can’t continue with a hybrid arrangement. It sums up the sentiment across the whole recruitment and employment marketplace and not to be dismissed lightly.
Flexible working is here to stay and there a host of business benefits to working this way. However, there may be some employers who are reticent to move to complete flexibility, which is where hybrid working could be a great compromise and a win-win for all.
If you’re looking to focus on hybrid or flexible working but not sure where to start, why not get in touch and find out more.