In the war for talent and an age where workers are reconsidering what they want from work, many organizations are grappling with what they need to do to retain employees.
To uncover exactly what workers want, HR and payroll software provider Ciphr spoke to over a thousand workers in the UK about what makes somewhere a good place to work.
The study found that businesses are largely impressing employees with what they offer, only 6% of respondents claimed that there was ‘nothing’ about the company that employs them that made it a ‘good place to work’. However, more needs to be done.
Interestingly, skills development, good communication from management, and the ability for employees to be themselves were of the least importance with only 13% of workers valuing these elements.
Instead, workplace friendships seem to be critical.
Creating a positive culture
Ciphr discovered that the key element that made a positive workplace was good colleagues and friendly people (40%) followed by competitive pay (35%).
It makes sense that pay will undoubtedly continue to be an important priority, particularly as the cost of living crisis is putting unprecedented strain on households in the UK. In this economic environment, job security is also important to 35% of the survey respondents.
Aspects of work like a supportive manager (27%), a solid benefits package (24%), and flexibility (21%) were still acknowledged, but are evidently not as important as other factors in retaining staff.
Claire Williams, chief people officer at Ciphr, commented on the findings: “I don’t think any employer should underestimate the importance and impact that the relationships that employees have with their colleagues can have on individual and team performance, morale, productivity, and even retention.
“At a basic level you are far more likely to work in a collaborative and engaging way with people you get on with, and there is a higher chance of enjoying your role and having a positive association with your employer, if your time is broadly filled with like-minded people.”
Williams went on to note: “The social connectivity employees can find through their work also became more important throughout the COVID-19 pandemic when everyone’s social circles reduced and many of us shifted to remote work.
“Many of us forged new and closer relationships with colleagues as we bonded over that shared experience and the personal challenges it brought.
“Building a workforce and hiring new employees based on common values and effective behaviors is a great place to start if you are looking to improve relationships between colleagues.
“However, this can also pose a risk of reducing or negatively impacting your organization’s diversity.”
As a result, employers must consider diversity, equity, and inclusion while also finding candidates who can help create friendly and productive workplaces.
There are a variety of elements that make an enjoyable and friendly workplace need to be considered. Whether it’s social activities, team-building exercises, or simply ensuring that teams aren’t siloed; given how important friendships are to employee engagement, it is time to prioritize positive interactions in the future of work.
Want to hear more from UNLEASH? Sign up now for free access to all our online content, exclusive reports, as well as discounts for our events.
Sign up to the UNLEASH Newsletter
Get the Editor’s picks of the week delivered straight to your inbox!