faEach year, Scouted helps thousands of candidates find their dream jobs. To ensure our candidates’ success and happiness, we match them with employers who share their values. We know what’s important to our clients in their job searches, and we find employers who meet our candidates’ expectations. So, what are those values and expectations? We dug deep and found out.
Autonomy and Meaningful Work
The young professionals we work with at Scouted—engineers in particular—are passionate about their areas of expertise, and they also want the chance to complete meaningful work, on their own time, in their own way. In short, job seekers today are looking for positions where they have the autonomy they need to feel valued and to make a difference.
We’ve found that one reason our candidates name Google, Facebook, and NASA as some of their dream employers is for the cultural and historic cachet—those places are game changers, and our candidates want to make an impact. In our ebook, Where Do Young Professionals Actually Want to Work, we dig into our own data sets and we break down the results of Universum’s 2017 World’s Most Attractive Employers (WMAE) report, which suggest that young job seekers are looking for employers whose values align with their own. In the WMAE report, for example, engineers ranked “to be dedicated to a cause or to feel that I am serving a greater good” in their top three career goals. One way for a company to help young job candidates feel aligned with the company’s goals is by fostering a sense of community and innovation in the workplace.
Along with wanting to make a difference on a large scale, young job seekers also want to work on meaningful projects that make a difference within their companies, which is a fun and rewarding experience. In fact, Scouted’s research shows that job candidates have begun to seek out roles in smaller companies and startups, where there’s greater potential for making individual contributions that influence their surroundings. That doesn’t mean larger companies can’t play ball, of course. FundersClub recommends there be “a palpable effort at all sizes of companies to limit scope and to keep feedback loops as short as possible.” We’ve found that candidates are more likely to choose a position where they know they’ll get to see the significance of their work and be proud of it.
Today’s job seekers also want to be able to have some measure of control over how they manage their workload. Young professionals have come up in a world of telecommuting and flexible scheduling options, both of which they view as vital to their professional happiness and productivity. According to a 2017 report by CNBC, “Roughly 76 percent of millennials would take a pay cut of at least 3 percent to work for a company that offers flexible office hours,” and based on 2018 research, 63 percent of tech professionals would take a pay cut in exchange for half-time telecommuting options. Further emphasizing this idea, a 2015 Ernst & Young survey found that “working with colleagues, including my boss, who support my efforts to work flexibly to meet both my professional and personal goals” was one of the top attributes full-time employees identified as “extremely/very important” in a job. The same study reported that “flexibility stigma” (real or perceived penalization for working flex hours or taking leave) and “a lack of workplace flexibility, including the option to telecommute” were two of the top 10 reasons millennials left full-time positions.
Essentially, employers who allow their workers a degree of autonomy are more attractive to job seekers and end up with more energized, loyal, and happy employees. TechBeacon says, “An employee who is trusted to get their work done is more likely to work on their own time than one who is mandated to be in the office at times that are difficult for them.” In other words, young professionals are most comfortable in work environments where they’re trusted in their capabilities to complete projects.
For further analysis of Scouted’s data on young job candidates and their employment preferences, read our ebook.