Tuesday, February 7, 2017

New ways of working: is workplace wellness the trick to attract talent?

I had a prospect client last week who referred to a competitor who had installed an office gym to attract talent. I had flashbacks of my PricewaterhouseCoopers time in the late nineties where the new office featured not only a bar and a shopping service but also a fully equipped gym. Not that we ever used it…after all, you don’t want to sit in the office with a sweaty, red face after a lunch workout.

Nevertheless, it triggered my mind. After several years of relative silence, workplace wellness appears to be back in fashion and is considered as a way of wooing the scarce talent by several trending companies. But can meditation sessions during lunch time or an in-house personal trainer be a competitive advantage when it comes down to attracting top talent?

Today’s talent attraction goes beyond drafting a clear job description and assessing a person’s experience and achievements. It is about finding the candidate who matches the DNA of your company and who will be complementary to the other team members. At the same time, it is about convincing the candidate that you can respond to their aspirations and career goals.

To assess the benefits of corporate health programs on talent acquisition, a distinction should be made between people who are just entering the job market and more experienced professionals.

Millennials who are just entering the workplace, are expecting more from a job than just a paycheck. This implies that they want to get an insight into what it is like to work in your company.
Consequently, it pays off to invest in building a solid employer brand. Workplace wellness programs can help you in defining that brand and set you apart from the competition. Group workouts and lunch yoga sessions are excellent opportunities to show what’s behind the scenes of your workplace. Next to that, it is great PR.

More experienced professionals on the other hand, have different objectives. They are looking for the next step in their career or a company whose culture is in line with their values. They are likely to be far less attracted by state-of-the-art wellness programs unless it has become an integral part of the working culture. Participating in a Hercules challenge to increase team-building, a pro-active burn-out prevention program supported by top management or a company restaurant offering healthy meals will send a message that you care about the well-being of your employees.
This approach might give you the competitive advantage that you are looking for as it is a perfect example of the “show, don’t tell”-approach to marketing. You’re putting your money where your mouth is by illustrating exactly how your company invests in the wellbeing of its employees.

But let’s be realistic, without a solid vision for the future, strong leadership and sufficient opportunities for career growth, promoting a corporate health program is merely window dressing and will not convince top-talent to choose your company as their next employer.

Implementing a wellness approach is just one of the new ways of working that are trending now. In the coming weeks, I want to look some other trends and the way they impact the attraction of talent. So, should you have any innovative new ways of working, let me know!

I look forward to hearing from you,

Through a personalized and tailor-made approach, Ingenium Executive Search aspires to assist you in attracting the right talent that matches the DNA of your company

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