What Talent Wants Automotive

What Talent Wants Automotive

Every year, we conduct a large, global survey of workers to find out about their attitudes and feelings towards their work, the employment market and their employers. In this paper we discuss the overall trends in the 2013 survey responses, with a spotlight on those findings related to workers in the automotive sector.

But first, a brief look at what’s changed over the past year.

When comparing the results of our Kelly Workforce Index results over the past two years (2012 and 2013), it seems that workers feel a declining sense of happiness with, and meaning in, the work they are doing. They also showed an increased focus on financial reward and there has been a small increase (two percentage points) in the proportion of people working in contract and temporary roles.

Time and again, our research into worker behaviours and attitudes shows a significant gap between what employees really seek and what most employers are providing.

However, the gap isn’t always a result of the factors HR teams and leadership teams assume it is. Instead of offering new benefits or higher pay, or even flexible working options, as if this will bridge the divide, the issues at stake for people’s genuine commitment to and satisfaction with their work is far deeper than this. And, not least of all, because most workers already expect flexibility to be a given.

In fact, most employees expect that issues such whether they can use the work laptop for personal email or whether they can work from home are no longer relevant. They’ve already made the connection between these issues and the productivity outcomes. Yet, it appears many employers are some way from agreeing.

As a result, workers consistently reveal that they have a deep disconnection from what their job really contributes to customers, communities and the progress of their organisation more generally. People want to make a difference, and they are willing to work hard to achieve it. They don’t want to focus on ‘small’ issues or be an easily replaceable cog in a well-oiled but meaningless wheel.

Addressing these challenges requires HR departments and leadership teams to think differently about how they market themselves to the talent they already have, and the talent they are seeking. But above all, it requires them to think differently about the kind of work they ask their people to do, and how much genuine responsibility they give them to do it.


That’s what talent really wants.

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