Mega-Trend: WorkLife Initiatives Take Hold
The cat is out of the bag! Work-life balance initiatives can no longer be put on an employers to-do list. A barrage of polls, surveys and anecdotal information has been pouring into the media lately especially with regard to employee engagement. A quick Google search reveals about 500 stories on that one topic.
Recruiting and staffing company, Spherion, finds that less than half of U.S. workers are satisfied with their jobs. This statistic, which comes from the company's 2007 Emerging Workforce Study nearly mirrors other recent polls indicating employees want their workplace to change, and they might finally have something to say about it. The findings indicate, "employers are not adapting to their evolving needs and priorities," according to the Spherion survey.
This is the beginning of a battle call for change. Continued exploration of the topic may influence the employee/employer paradigm of power. As attracting and retaining employees continues to become more of an effort, and workers seek out better working conditions, we'll likely see more effort on the part of big business to keep its talent. Another recent study suggests as much.
Addressing healthcare benefits, compensation, and worklife balance initiatives is just the start. According to worldwide consulting and outsourcing firm, Mercer, the investment that organizations are making in employee training and career development might trump the aforementioned areas. A recent Mercer 2007 Total Rewards Snapshot Survey shows that in 2008:
46% plan to spend more on training
51% plan to spend more on career development
The most galvanizing statistic from the Mercer study suggesting employers are taking notice of employee needs...
88% of the responding organizations indicated attracting and retaining talent is the most pressing challenge for companies.
This costs money and will cause companies to take a mircoscopic look at those RIO (Return on Investment) spreadsheets. Looks like 2008 will be just as significant a balancing act for big business - as it will be for workers.