A Tighter Labour Market but…

23rd May 2022

Posted In: Be In The Frame

Despite a tighter labour market in Ireland, worker attachment to employers remains high as 70% of employees intend to remain with their employer for at least the next two years according to WTW’s  latest Employee Attraction & Retention research. This is an increase from 61% in 2019 and 58% in 2017.

Whilst most employees plan to remain with their current employer for the next two years, about a third are open to considering offers, should they come their way.

Security is top of mind for employees: pay (50%) and job security (37%) are the key factors to attracting and retaining talent, followed by flexible work arrangements (32%).

Support Employee Wellbeing

The research also found that employees in Ireland who believe that their employer has been successful in supporting wellbeing during the pandemic are more likely to be engaged, productive and to stay. 59% of employees in Ireland felt supported by their employer over the last two years, while only 16% did not. 82% of those who feel supported by their employer would like to remain with them for the next two years compared to 45% of employees that do not feel supported.

Commenting on the research, Sarah McDonough, Employee Experience Leader, UK & Ireland at WTW, said, “Returning to pre-pandemic levels of employment has been difficult for companies in Ireland, however these findings suggest that many employees are satisfied with their current employer and intend to stay.

Worker attachment to employers has grown in Ireland despite a tighter labour market.”

“There is a pressure for employers to find ways to better meet their workers’ needs, particularly on issues such as Employee Experience, wellbeing, skills development, and career structure so that employees choose to stay. It is evident from this survey that employee engagement, productivity and retention are all linked to employee wellbeing and companies in Ireland must consider these factors when looking at their workforce.”

Benefits Matter

The retention impact of good benefits programmes stands out in the research. When benefits packages meet employee’s needs, they are almost twice as likely to say they would like to remain with their employer for the foreseeable future.

When looking at the benefits that matter, 42% of employees in Ireland listed retirement as the number one benefit that they want their employers to focus on. This is followed by flexible work (40%), health (34%) and career (29%).

Commenting on learnings for employers in Ireland, Sarah McDonough said; “More and more we are seeing retirement and flexibility cited as key drivers of career satisfaction for workers in Ireland in their quest for career satisfaction. We know from our research that these concerns play a critical role in creating an experience for employees that is both differentiated and attractive.”

“Employers must look to the strength of their overall packages in relation to the needs of their staff. In many cases, this means enhancing health and retirement benefits, offering flexibility, and focusing on staff wellbeing. A more holistic employee experience will ensure that companies in Ireland can attract and retain staff, reskill, and upskill existing team members and optimise job design.”

About the survey
WTW’s 2022 Attraction & Retention research was conducted during December 2021 and January 2022 as part of the wider Global Benefits Attitudes Survey. Respondents include 828 employees in Ireland from large and midsize private employers, representing a broad range of industries.