Glassdoor Study Reveals What Job Seekers Are Looking For

Employers hesitant to include salary and benefits information in job ads may inadvertently cause job seekers to lose interest, revealed a new study conducted by The Harris Poll on behalf of Glassdoor. The survey, which polled over 1,100 U.S. adults in May 2018 who are either currently employed or not employed but looking for work, uncovered multiple insights into what employees and job seekers value most when it comes to looking at job ads, what entices them to apply to a company and how and where they prefer to find jobs. 

Writing Irresistible Job Ads

Job ads no longer serve as a source of information on the roles and requirements of a position alone — they are employers’ most important recruitment marketing assets. So if your job ads are completely focused on what you’re looking for in a new hire versus what you have to offer, they may not be resonating with candidates, especially in a job seeker’s labor market like the one we currently find ourselves in.

Employees and job seekers surveyed shared that some of the top factors they looked for in job ads were:

  • Salaries (67 percent)
  • Benefits (63 percent)
  • Location (59 percent)
  • Commute time (43 percent) and
  • Employee reviews (32 percent)

“Job seekers crave transparency on pay, not only to make an initial judgment about whether to consider applying for a job, but also to assess if an employer holds long-term potential for them,”  said Julie Coucoules, Glassdoor’s Global Head of Talent Acquisition. “Quality candidates are typically well-researched and those that go beyond job ads and look for a richer set of background data that includes benefits and employee reviews, among other specific traits about an employer. This means that employers should make information available to job candidates proactively, or they risk missing out on quality candidates applying.”

[Related: How to Write a Good Job Advert]

Attracting Quality Candidates

Beyond what catches their eye in a job ad, survey respondents also shared which factors would actually drive them to apply to a particular role. Nearly half of U.S. workers/job seekers (48 percent) cited attractive benefits and perks (e.g., gym memberships, paid time off, etc.), while a convenient, easy commute came in at a close second (47 percent). Other important factors included high salaries (46 percent), good work-life balance (43 percent) and the flexibility to work from home (41 percent), while company culture (35 percent), the company’s financial performance (26 percent) and familiarity with the brand (23 percent) came in slightly lower.

Retaining Employees for the Long Haul

While perks, an easy commute and a high salary may be what gets employees in the door, they aren’t necessarily what keeps them around. 44 percent of respondents reported company transparency on pay and benefits as important in helping them assess long-term potential, followed by an explanation from employers about how they can grow within the company (39 percent) and having a track record for promoting from within (37 percent). 

A separate study by Glassdoor’s Chief Economist Dr. Andrew Chamberlain showed that once in a job, culture and values are the biggest driver of employee satisfaction, followed by career opportunities and senior leadership.

Meeting Job Seekers Where They Are

The job search has largely moved online, but that doesn’t mean that all online channels are considered equal. Half of workers/job seekers (51 percent) say their preferred source for finding a relevant new job opportunity is an online job site, such as Glassdoor. Other preferred sources included: 

  • Hearing about the job from a friend (45 percent)
  • Finding the job on a company’s careers site (35 percent)
  • Having a recruiter or hiring manager reach out to them (34 percent)
  • Discovering a new job via social media (20 percent) and
  • Hearing about a job through a staffing agency (19 percent)

Online channels also proved to be the most popular resources for researching opportunities, with more than half of workers/job seekers (53 percent) saying job search websites are where they would look for information on a company they might like to work for, outranking word of mouth (43 percent), professional networking sites (35 percent), social media (32 percent), personal networking (32 percent) and company careers pages (26 percent).

“Job seekers are taking control of their own destiny by harnessing the power of information to find the right job and employer for them,” said Coucoules. “Today, job seekers are more informed than ever. By helping prospective talent find and access the information they want, you’ll be helping your recruiting efforts.”

Learn More: 

Recruitment Marketing for Dummies