Survey: most employees are now looking to stay with their current employer

Amid a cost-of-living crisis, high inflation and global political unrest, U.S. employees are turning to their employers for a sense of security. A new survey by leading global advisory, broking and solutions company WTW found a majority (72%) of employees are choosing to stay with their employers, ending a period of intense job turnover and attraction and retention challenges for employers.

The 2024 Global Benefits Attitudes Survey found that, in a significant change from 2022 when a majority of employees (53%) were looking to leave, most employees are now looking to stay with their current employer. While a quarter of employees were open to offers in 2022, only 11% would welcome them now. Moreover, fewer employees (25%) report being stuck in their jobs now, compared with 2022 (35%).

The motivations to stay remain the same as in 2022: In this year’s survey, employees cite pay (48%), job security (41%) and health benefits (36%) as the top reasons. Flexible work arrangements (31%) are also an important factor in the decision to stay.

Pay continues to be the main driver for both attraction and retention. Many employees (56%) would still consider another job offer for better pay. For those willing to consider changing jobs for better pay, a 10% salary increase would be needed to make the move.

“As employees search for a greater sense of stability, employers are ramping up their core benefits,” said Steve Nyce, senior economist and global leader for the Research and Innovation Center, WTW. “Focus on pay has strengthened, and benefits are meeting the needs of many employees, not just some. The past few years, particularly with the COVID-19 pandemic, have shed light on employers’ need to invest in their core benefit program, and these survey results show that the investment paid off. By continuing to prioritize these factors, employers can build trust, ultimately creating an environment that will drive retention and provide job security.”

While pay remains at the forefront of attraction and retention, the survey found benefits are not far behind. Almost half (49%) of employees chose their current employers due to their benefit packages, and over half (54%) stayed with their employers for the same reason. Two-fifths (40%) would leave their employers for better benefits elsewhere and no change in salary. Of those whose benefit packages meet their needs, most (82%) intend to remain with their employers.

Expanded choice in benefits is also helping build trust toward employers. The survey found a majority of employees have more choice in benefits (66%), which allows them to alter core benefits or use a flexible benefits fund to have a choice in other benefits, including access to voluntary benefits. When employees have the most choice in benefits, 76% report their benefits meet their needs, and 78% would recommend their employer as a good place to work.

“The war for talent is no longer just about pay; benefits matter, and the ability to choose those benefits is important for adapting to employees’ changing needs,” said Cecile Chang, global growth leader, Health & Benefits, WTW. “Employers should invest in their employees’ long-term wellbeing and offer a sense of security through the benefit package. While they can’t control the world outside of work, they can support their employees through an inclusive and tailored benefits process.”

About the study

The 2024 Global Benefits Attitudes Survey was conducted from January to March 2024. Respondents include 10,000 U.S. employees working at medium and large private sector employers, representing a broad range of industries.


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