2021 Employer Survey Summary
In Q1, 2021, we are looking at the importance of employee wellbeing and the impact that a strong employee value proposition can have on a business.
With employee wellbeing a hot topic on business agendas, we have researched accountancy employers’ and employees’ thoughts and views on wellbeing and happiness at work.
In our efforts to understand what the accountancy industry thinks about employee wellbeing, we surveyed accountancy businesses to rate their thoughts on 15 statements related to how the circumstances of 2020 have influenced their views on employee wellbeing.
Our data was collected anonymously from accountancy employers across the United Kingdom.
Is an Employee Value Proposition important to accountancy businesses?
There is little doubt that the challenges of 2020 pushed employee wellness and wellbeing higher up on the agenda of many businesses.
Accountancy businesses have had to remain agile and adaptable to protect productivity and profitability. The traditional motivational factors, such as salaries and benefits, haven’t changed or gone away. However, due to the enforcement of remote working, those elements that we took for granted before such as communication, morale and management have come into sharp focus due to the COVID 19 pandemic.
So, how have accountancy employers reacted? Are strategies and working practices changing, and if so, how do accountancy businesses use these changes to their advantage?
Can a strong Employee Value Proposition really contribute to the success of an accountancy business?
We have combined the results of our research from both employers and employees to help address this question.
What the results told us.
Our survey of accountancy practices focused on the core issues that affect the operational effectiveness of a business. We sought views on factors such as core values and corporate and social responsibility, remote working, morale, recruitment, management and salaries and benefits.
In recent years, we’ve observed a clear but subtle shift in the strategic importance of employee welfare. Following the enforced changes brought about in 2020 due to the COVID pandemic, we were keen to understand what are the influencing factors affecting wellbeing in the workplace.
The themes and trends emerging from our results made interesting reading.
Nearly all of the businesses surveyed agreed that employee wellbeing was a strategic priority. However, many also reported that employee wellbeing had been harder to manage as a result of remote working.
In response to the subject of remote working, results inferred that remote working had improved productivity but to the detriment of staff morale. Businesses also reported that they were likely to offer remote working as standard to employees in the future.
Over half of the businesses surveyed said that they experienced difficulties attracting and recruiting high calibre staff, whilst all respondents agreed that retention of staff was a key objective of the business. Unsurprisingly, businesses agreed that offering more competitive salary packages would help address these issues.
So what can accountancy businesses make from this?
In isolation, these results can only give an insight into the strategies that accountancy businesses are likely to put into place.
There appears little doubt that accountancy businesses have identified the strategic importance of employee happiness and wellbeing — the reasons why, however, are less obvious.
Responses have inferred that accountancy businesses are not yet entirely comfortable with some of the new working practices being enforced upon them. Results citing difficulties managing staff and an increase in instances of performance management appear to contradict the views supporting remote working, for example.
Only in conjunction with our employee survey results can we start to understand how accountancy firms can develop an effective Employee Value Proposition.
You can see the full survey results in our Employee Value Proposition e-guide.
Are you recruiting for an accountancy position?
If you are looking to recruit for your accountancy practice, Public Practice Recruitment Ltd can help.
Exclusively developed for the accountancy industry, our professional team will seek the highest calibre of candidate for your role, so you’ll be confident they will actively contribute to the success of your accountancy firm.