New Study: Employees Want Jobs That Will Ensure They’re Future Ready

Woman utilizing education benefits and studying for her degree

“All of our jobs are going to change." 

So said an author of a McKinsey report issued earlier this year showing how jobs in many sectors are likely to shrink. 

Employees know it, and they’re not content to wait for the other shoe to drop. And there’s a message for employers. People are “going back to school by the millions,” writes Bright Horizons newly released Working Learner Index. “It’s driving “unprecedented interest in benefits such as tuition reimbursement.” 

Survey Says: Employees Prioritize Learning

The study of more than 30,000 people who are learning and earning puts numbers to what benefits leaders long suspected: employees value education assistance. A lot.  

  • 76% say the programs makes them more likely to stick around
  • 81% said tuition reimbursement would make them likely to recommend the company to a friend
  • 64% says it makes them happier at work

Yet there’s more in the report than just the “why” of education benefits – but also the “how.” Degrees may still dominate many traditional tuition programs, but they’re no longer enough on their own. Today’s employees want speed and convenience, with fully online classes topping the list of what matters in program choice. It’s a message that to be strategic, employer programs will have to diversify – include online, in person, as well as certifications, boot camps, and more -- to meet modern learners where they are.  

The Future of Education Benefits

Finally, perhaps most telling is exactly who’s learning. The Working Learner Index study calls working learners “a highly engaged subset of employees who are looking for credentials with a longer shelf life.” In the current excruciating tight talent market, such employees are like gold. Employers need them. Because, let’s face it, it’s not only employees who need to be future ready. “Employers face huge challenges ahead as they struggle to keep workers agile,” says the report. 

An engaged workforce with people willing to pivot for themselves and the organization – that could be just the answer everyone’s been looking for.  

Read the full report, here.

Written by: Alan Robins

October 29, 2019

About the Author

Alan Robins at Bright Horizons

As Director of Product Marketing, Alan drives original research and thought leadership for Bright Horizons education benefits programs, drawing on his extensive experience helping companies optimize education programs to support their Talent and HR objectives. Prior to Bright Horizons, Alan was at Gartner, a global leader in providing advisory services to technology and business executives, where he led new product teams in Europe and the US.