Resources to Support Work/Life Balance Critical Factors in Recruitment and Retention

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More than ever, employees are prioritizing their lives outside of work and seek employer support to balance personal and professional demands. In fact, for entry-level employees (those ages 21'30), work/life balance was the most important factor when deciding to join/remain with an employer. For these employees, work/life balance was more important than the opportunity for financial growth and advancement or skill building and professional growth.  

The quality of coworker and/or customer relationships was the leading factor, with 58 percent of employees indicating this as their top consideration when deciding whether to join and/or remain with an employer. The third rated criterion' working for an organization whose purpose/mission they agreed with ' ranked at 54 percent. Additionally, the study showed that among employees who were very satisfied with their current benefits package, about 65 percent were also satisfied with their job. Even more (67 percent) felt a strong sense of loyalty to their employer.  

Providing for employee life-stage needs is critical to company success, particularly in the increasingly competitive hunt for talent. The study revealed that 22 percent of full-time employees reported changing jobs in the past 18 months. For employees with children under age 6, 31 percent reported changing jobs in the same time frame. Among these, less than half (45 percent) are satisfied with their current positions, implying another job change could be possible. Three-quarters of employers expect the competition for talent to intensify in 2006, and if their predictions come true, U.S. employers may face serious dips in productivity.  
Given these findings, employers must place as much emphases on their work/life and benefits programs in their recruitment efforts as they do on salary. In addition, employers should consider enhancing company culture and mission to ensure that the company exudes a strong sense of purpose in which employees can believe.  

To review the complete MetLife Study of Employee Benefits Trends in full, please visit www.whymetlife.com
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