What candidates value in job offers compared to pre-COVID
The days of companies wooing job candidates with gym memberships, free lunches, ping-pong tables, bean bag chairs, and stocked refrigerators are gone.
Whether this change is temporary or permanent is debatable. What’s certain, though, is that since COVID hit, there’s been a major transformation not only in how companies are attracting talent but also in what job seekers value in an employment offer.
Since March, these are our observations on jobs that we’ve placed and our conversations with a variety of candidates – from entry-level to senior vp-level and c-suite roles.
Flexibility Matters Now More Than Ever
It’s been a long time since any job candidate has asked about companies offering standup desks or laundry service. Because of the prolonging of virtual work, questions about office perks are now being replaced by inquiries about:
- Work-from-home policies
- Home-office stipends (i.e. fiber Internet, utilities, cell phone bill)
- Equipment (i.e. computer, headphones, webcams)
- Childcare benefits
- Sick leave policies
- Food allowances
- Online training budgets
- Rent subsidies for home offices
In addition, companies should be prepared to discuss in detail their go-forward plans under various scenarios.
- Will remote employees be required to work from the company HQ post-COVID?
- Which date does your remote work policy extend to?
- If a job candidate wants to work from the office, are they allowed to right now?
Major Tech Companies Buying Office Space
If you read the tea leaves, the days of remote work may be numbered post-COVID.
We’re now past six months of virtual working, and people are seeing the downsides (see: Zoom fatigue). What’s interesting is that some of the largest tech companies, which likely have troves of data to gauge the productivity of their respective employee bases, are buying up real estate.
Amazon is expanding its office space in six cities. IBM is looking for office space in New York. Google is growing its presence in Atlanta. Facebook is buying up office space.
Perhaps they know something about remote work that others do not?
Meanwhile, Netflix co-CEO Reed Hastings recently said he doesn’t “see any positives” to working from home.
All that said, while your company may be excited by these developments, we suggest being sensitive to job candidates who may prefer remote work even post-COVID. This will enable you to attract a larger pool of applicants, which is critical for hard-to-find talent in fields like artificial intelligence, machine learning, and data science.
Need help with finding A-level talent? Looking for end-to-end guidance on your hiring process? Reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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