EXCLUSIVE: The vast majority of employers (97%) agree that the workplace expectations of staff are changing rapidly, according to a study conducted by professional services provider Aon.
The organisation’s Benefits and trends survey, which polled more than 200 employers of various sizes, found that flexible working features heavily in employees’ changing expectations. Some 98% of respondents said staff now expect more flexibility in their working hours, while 89% stated that employees increasingly expect agile or home working to be readily available.
Making up the rest of the top five expectations from employees were better awareness of mental health issues (79%), better approaches to diversity and inclusion (65%) and improved maternity, paternity and parental leave policies (63%). More than half (54%) of respondents also said that access to financial education is an increasingly popular expectation among employees.
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Richard Morgan, strategic consultant at Aon, said: “There seems to be a particularly rapid pace of change at the moment, much of it driven by technology. This impacts an organisation’s workforce model and has consequences on an employee’s role fulfilment, the types of people who fill those roles, as well as the organisations they compete with for talent.
“How employers respond to these changes will define how successfully they can implement their future workforce plans.”
Three-fifths (60%) of employers say their organisations are either already in the process of reacting to the changing workplace expectations of current employees, or that they plan to do so within the next five years. However, 89% stated that they will need to change their benefits offering to meet the needs of future generations.
Morgan said: “The results from the survey clearly show that the majority of respondents have either already undergone fundamental change or expect to in the near future. Just 29.5% said they don’t expect any change within the next five years.”