TRENDICATORS RESEARCH REPORT: RECRUITING

The 2022 Job Seeker Survey Report

Introduction

Welcome to the 2022 Job Seeker Survey Report, an analysis of the perceptions and preferences of active and passive candidates across all major industries in the U.S. produced by Trendicators, the research division of Engage2Excel Group. This report is based on survey responses from 1,516 job seekers in February 2022. The report presents a revealing perspective on six key questions, the answers to which should influence your organization’s talent acquisition and retention strategies to optimize success:

  • Why do candidates accept or reject job offers?
  • Why do people seek employment elsewhere?
  • How will your company manage today’s remote work realities?
  • What do candidates think about recruiting processes?
  • How important is recognition in the recruiting process?
  • What do candidates think about onboarding processes?

 

The results published in this report are based on a survey of 1,516 individuals, from all major industry sectors and demographic groups, including 1,143 active job seekers, 373 passive job seekers. Trendicators is the research division of Engage2Excel Group, a leading provider of employee recruitment, recognition, and survey and analytics solutions. Trendicators provides original research, along with reports on insights and best practices from industry leaders and experts.

 

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The table below shows that candidates’ top three factors with the greatest influence on their decision to accept or reject a job offer have remained constant since 2019. Whether or not a candidate is shown recognition, appreciation and respect throughout the entire hiring process is most important, followed by fair compensation and job fit. This data shows that the “Great Resignation” is not about changing perceptions but about employees becoming more aware of their options in making meaningful career decisions.

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The unemployment rate dropped to 3.6% in March 2022 as employers extended a robust hiring streak, adding 431,000 new jobs—a sign of economic resilience despite continued impact from the pandemic and the highest inflation rate in 40 years. For the first time since 2019, the top reason given by all candidates for their willingness to seek employment elsewhere is not compensation but the failure of their employer to demonstrate recognition, respect and appreciation. Unfair compensation was cited as the second most important factor this year, followed by concerns over job security. Employees have increased power to act on what has always been important to them. This gives Total Rewards Managers additional leverage to argue for budget increases to expand their employee recognition and rewards programs.

 

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The pandemic has profoundly and forever changed perceptions about the modern workplace. More than half the people we surveyed say they work from home at least 40% of the time. Additionally, despite the fact that nearly three-quarters say they expect to return to the office within the next three to six months, 47% would prefer to work from home 100% of the time. Only 22% of those surveyed say they prefer to work in the office 100% of the time.

Market research firm Forrester predicts that 60% of offices will adopt a hybrid work policy this year. How does this data stack up with your organization’s return-to-office policies?

 

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In today’s talent market, candidates have all the power. Among the most significant changes since our 2019 survey: 91% of candidates, a 19% increase, expect to apply for a job on a mobile device; 61% would participate in an organization’s social community even if there are no current job openings; and 61% would consider another job offer if not contacted between the time of offer and the first day on the job.

 

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Do your organization’s recruiters and hiring managers understand the importance candidates place on recognition today? As cited on Page 3, it is the most important reason candidates give for accepting or rejecting a job offer. Nearly three-quarters of candidates say that the presence of a recognition and rewards program on an employer’s website is “Very Important” or “Important.” Since 2019, there are also significant increases in the importance candidates place on being praised and recognized during each phase of the hiring process.

 

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The onboarding experience sets the tone for the employee’s career experience with your company.The pandemic, shift to remote work and changing candidate perceptions require new approaches. Nearly three-quarters (74%) of candidates now say that their onboarding experience will affect their decision to stay with the company for more than a month, a 12% increase from 2019. Even more pronounced is that 71% of candidates, a 26% increase since 2019, say that interacting with other employees is “Very Important” or “Important” in the Pre-Offer stage.

 

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Insights from the 2022 Job Seeker Report to Optimize Recruiting and Onboarding Experiences

 

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