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What Employees WANT from their jobs isn’t everything they NEED.

A quarter of Canadian employees have changed employers in the past two years – however, those who have changed jobs recently report the same level of job satisfaction as those who haven’t. This is an interesting trend we at market research agency Callosum Marketing observed in a national study we conducted in March 2023 with working Canadians – a trend which begs the question:

Why are employees, particularly those earlier in their careers, changing jobs frequently, only to find the same levels of satisfaction?

One of the most interesting market insights uncovered in this study was that what employees think will give them the most job satisfaction, may not paint the full picture of what truly keeps them happy at work. Keep reading to find out what employees believe they want, what might be missing, and how you as an employer can do incorporate this into your new talent marketing methods

What employees state that they want.

In our market analysis of 1,042 respondents across Canada, we asked what was most important to them when finding employment. A competitive salary was the leading response, followed by health benefits and time off (vacation, personal days, etc.). In addition to this, the most common reason that respondents had recently changed jobs was to improve their salary. Some items that surprisingly fell further down the list included continuous training, social activities, and on-site services like a gym or cafeteria. 

What employees really want.

Using advanced analytics, however, we were able to take another look at what is driving job satisfaction – and it’s not exactly what our respondents indicated they were looking for. What we did in this study was compare respondents’ overall satisfaction with their current job and their levels of satisfaction with various factors of their current job. This technique, called a Drivers Analysis, showcases what factors are driving current satisfaction. A sense of accomplishment & fulfillment at work was the leading driver, followed by the tasks of the job and a sense of belonging within the team/company.  This market analysis indicated that salary  was contributing much less to job satisfaction – this also matched our finding in this study that increased salaries always lead to higher level of job satisfaction. Again, expensive features such as continuous training, social activities, and on-site services like a gym or cafeteria also appeared contributed very little to satisfaction through this analysis. 

So how can you use this information to benefit your organization and help marketing efforts?

  • Employee Attraction: Make sure to highlight salaries, health benefits and time off in your marketing to prospective employees. This is what many Canadian job-seekers have their eye on.

  • Employee Retention: Find out what will bring your employees a sense of accomplishment and fulfillment. 

  • Operational Focus: While items like continuous training, social activities, and services on-site are important, setting other items as a priority appear more likely to bring in talent and keep them happy!

To discuss an industry research or customer research study tailored to your business needs, contact Callosum Marketing at


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