It’s no secret that the last 2 years have completely turned job markets around the world on their heads. Between the pandemic, “antiwork” movement, and growing “job-hopping” trends – businesses need to revaluate their value as an employer going into 2022. All of these events that occurred in the last 2 years have forced workers to revaluate what they value from an employer – businesses that want to grow need to align their expectations with the expectations of potential candidates today.

In this article, we’re going to look at a few trends we have noticed from interviews with potential candidates around the world and share how your business can adopt some of those expectations into your value as an employer.

Increased flexibility from work environments

The move to remote work was ramped up by the pandemic – but many companies have been offering remote work possibilities long before we were forced to.

Unsurprisingly, technology companies are leading the way when it comes to remote work. Github, a platform and community for developers, has been famously remote-only since 2013. The forced move to remote-only work environments has also revealed several benefits and cost-saving opportunities for businesses – and have thus encouraged these businesses to adopt a more permanent remote work policy.

We find that candidates generally have a realistic expectation and understanding about which portions of their role can be done remote versus in person. Some roles are unable to completely work from home, but when a candidate believes the only reason, they are being asked to come into the office is to be monitored, you are likely to lose them to another company that will embrace this flexibility.

Communicate socially responsible values

Businesses, especially large corporations, have more of an influence on our society today than ever before and there is no sign of this lessening. As a result, candidates place higher expectations on the companies they work and need to feel as though their role at work is contributing to the betterment of society in some way.

As recruiters and talent acquisition experts for over 30 years, we’ve noticed this sentiment grow across all industries, and job types. Countless surveys with job-seekers can back this up – including a recent “future of work” report published by PWC this year. These evolving priorities of candidates can even supersede the need for higher salaries.

Focus on internal mobility early in the hiring stage

The trend towards “job-hopping”, or workers only staying in their role for 2 – 5 years before moving on to a new company, has been growing for the last decade. Many of the candidates we approach are searching for a new role simply because they do not believe there is room to grow in their current roles.

Nonetheless, candidates of today can easily feel trapped. Despite job security being one of the most important qualities for employees, the trend towards job-hopping seems to contradict this point.

Growth opportunities are one of the few, sure-fire methods of retaining employees. Companies that are upfront about promotion paths and professional growth opportunities early in the hiring stage are more likely to attract motivated and proactive employees.

Take responsibility for employee wellbeing

Focus on employee wellbeing and mental health is probably the only trend on this list that we’ve seen born specifically from the events of the past 2 years. The lines between professional and personal relationships are blurring, and your best candidates will be motivated to accept what is required of them. However, this trend is not necessarily coming from employees themselves. In fact, it is companies who assume more responsibility for the social welfare of their employees that experience higher engagement rates, and better productivity.

Focus on the employee experience

In talent acquisition, the employee experience is the great indicator of your value as an employer. Companies who focus on the experience of candidates throughout the hiring stage are 3 times more likely to hire an employee that stays with their company for at least 3 years. The key is to identify and optimize candidate touchpoints throughout the hiring process – Including your job ads, first contact, communication between interviews, and finally, in the offer stage.

At Octagon, the employee experience is our top priority throughout the talent acquisition process. In a market where automatization often rules over the personal approach, our recruitment applies the best of both worlds so we can be sure we’re finding the right candidate for any role. As a team of expats ourselves, we are especially skilled at communicating with non-Dutch candidates to Dutch businesses, and vice-versa. Every role we work on receives the personal care and attention of a dedicated recruiter who learns your needs and business inside-and-out.

If you’re looking to grow your team in the Netherlands, reach out to our recruitment team and meet your dedicated recruiter today.