Work-Life Balance Still Critical to Job Acceptance

February 12, 2008 ( - While the size of the paycheck is still important, a new survey finds that nearly a third (29%) of US workers now consider work-life balance and flexibility to be at the top of their list when evaluating a job offer.

A news release said the Hudson survey found that compensation finished second (23%) when workers were asked to name the primary reason they accepted their current position.

“Money will always be important to people, but in this age of Internet powered remote access where there are so many virtual options, employees place a much higher premium on flexible work arrangements,” said Robert Morgan, co-president of Recruitment and Talent Management, Hudson, in the news release. “As the pool of qualified candidates shrinks, it seems that employers can compete more effectively for talent if they can offer work-life balance to go along with the competitive pay.”

When it comes to interviewing for jobs, the survey also found that workers are generally satisfied with how their current employer handled it, the announcement said. Three-quarters of workers rated their company’s interview process as “excellent” or “good.” Only five percent described it as “poor.”

Sixty-eight percent of workers said there was less than one month between when they applied for the position and when they began work.

On the down side, one in five (20%) workers said that the job assignment they eventually accepted did not quite match up with the job they heard about during their interview. A similar number (19%) claim that they did not meet their boss before joining the company.

“It is the company’s responsibility to make sure all candidates considered for a position understand what the job will entail. Failing to do so will create retention problems and may even have legal consequences,” Morgan warned.

According to the news release, additional survey findings include:

  • Only 26% of workers were recruited for their current job, while 66% responded that they were actively seeking a job.
  • Sixty-one percent of workers met with one to two people during the interview process. Nineteen percent met with three to four people.
  • Among workers who earn $75,000-$100,000 per year, 32% said that compensation was the primary reason they accepted their current job.

This survey is based on a national poll of 1,634 U.S. workers who have been with their company for less than five years conducted January 26-27, 2008, and was compiled by Rasmussen Reports, LLC, an independent research firm.