Got time?

Everyone likes perks, but what's the one everyone wants?


Got time?

Everyone likes perks, but what’s the one everyone wants? They want time. It’s the most desirable perk in 2020 and the decade ahead. Why? Because they don’t have enough of it, and employers are demanding far too much of it. Keep in mind that time is more than the hours in the day or the numbers on the clock. It’s also flexibility, it’s comfort. People want to be comfortable and happy, and when they’re happy they’re also productive.

For example, candidates for jobs today are starting to accept lower pay in exchange for the perks of time – such as working from home one day a week, or other types of flexibility. If it’s a remote position? I see candidates practically lining up around the block to work for less than what they would demand if they had to be at the office five days a week. These candidates understand that time is more valuable than money. People who work remotely might work just as many hours as those who work in a cubicle all day, but it’s not really about the hours. It’s about that work-life balance that gets harder to find every day.

The perk of time isn’t just important to workers, either. It’s also important to the companies that hire those workers. Companies want to fill their open positions, and they want to find the right people for their team. When a role is unfilled, other workers have to pick up additional workload in addition to their own– people suffer because they’d rather be doing their own thing, being with their families, doing their hobbies… They get disgruntled and they leave for somewhere with that better work-life balance, and then it spirals out of control. I see this all the time. I’ve seen mass corporate exoduses where multiple people leave quickly one after the other. There are good jobs out there, so this happens more easily than you might imagine. So companies hurry to find a butt to fill that empty seat and get back to work. But that hurrying ends up leading to a bad hire, so they have to start the process again a few months later, and find another person. Salary, time, training, and other resources are wasted on the wrong person, and employees become even more disgruntled at management for taking the wrong decisions. “You hired from the bottom of the barrel to work with me?! What do you think I am? Bye!” So much time, money, and work-life balance go down the drain. Training the wrong person for one year means a company wasted at the very minimum that person’s yearly salary threefold.

Companies should take the time to hire the right people, and candidates should take the time to find the right opportunity to avoid this job-hopping that is too common in this market. Then people match with their jobs as they should and everyone is happier. Those workers tend to have a work-life balance they can feel good about, and the companies they work for understand that keeping workers happy is one of the best ways to keep them doing productive and increase retention. By giving professional employees time as a perk, companies acknowledge that those employees are important and their time is valuable, it empowers workers. Feeling seen and heard makes employees want to work harder, as well, so everyone benefits