business woman showing balancing concept

Australian employers must adopt a “multi-pronged strategy” to connect with the cream of the talent crop, says Hudson’s executive general manager Dean Davidson.

According to Hudson’s latest employment survey, work life balance is the top priority for this year’s jobseekers, beating salary and career progression to the number one spot.

The Hiring Report: The State of Hiring in Australia 2015 surveyed more than 3000 professionals and hiring managers across Australia. Its findings revealed that 70% of Australian workers viewed work life balance as the most important thing when considering a new position, signalling the growing pressure on employers to seriously consider the arrangements they offer their staff.

Hudson’s executive general manager Dean Davidson said that Australian work culture has seen a shift, resulting in work life balance no longer being “just a buzz term or the domain of the working mum”.

“Work life balance is now fundamental to all Australian professionals and will be firmly on the agenda as we move throughout 2015,” he said. “The fact that cultural fit – that feeling of belonging – is so far up the value chain, and is actually the most important factor for senior executives, demonstrates that fitting in and feeling valued are also important priorities for Australian job seekers in 2015.

Respondents named higher salary as their second priority, while cultural fit closely followed as the third most important factor.

Davidson added that the evolution of digital technology and networks have created a highly complex job market.

“Our report shows three in four employees are open to being approached about a new job opportunity, while eight in 10 have an up-to-date CV and six in 10 have an up-to-date LinkedIn profile,” he said.

However, while employees are becoming increasingly open to being approached about new opportunities, finding and attracting talent is becoming more complex due to the modern requirement of both a competitive job offer and a multifaceted sourcing strategy.

Researchers found that hiring managers are acknowledging a scarcity of talent, with 90% saying that they need to look beyond active job seekers to find the right candidate.

The research showed that online job boards remain the single most important platform for sourcing new talent, named as hiring managers’ most effective sourcing channel. In spite of this, a third said that online job boards are now less effective than they were two years ago. Australian employers are increasingly adopting a “multi-pronged strategy” to secure talent, utilising recruitment specialists, personal networks, internal referral schemes and headhunting.

“This report confirms what we are seeing, in that while digital may have altered the job market forever, best practice hiring is far from a digital-only approach,” said Davidson. “Social media channels are growing rapidly however their effectiveness as a sourcing channel is still to be proven. External solutions and people networks remain imperative to the process of tapping into high quality candidates.”

Researchers also found that almost half of hiring managers use social media to evaluate candidates – although 82% of professionals said they are comfortable with their “online footprint”.

The top nine: What Australian jobseekers are looking for in 2015

1. Work life balance – 70%
2. Higher salary – 67%
3. Cultural fit within organisation and/or team – 64%
4. Career progression/training opportunities – 58%
5. Better benefits – 46%
6. A company whose values are closer to mine – 36%
7. Strong manager – 30%
8. Better brand – 14%
9. Better job title – 13%

Source: HC Online