January 03, 2013 07:30 ET

Employee Retention Crucial in 2013; Glassdoor Survey Reveals Nearly One in Five Will Look for New Job in Next 3 Months

Compensation, Commute and Career Growth Opportunities Most Influential Factors Impacting Job Seekers Decision to Accept a Job

SAUSALITO, CA--(Marketwire - Jan 3, 2013) - With the unemployment rate at the lowest it has been in more than three and a half years, employee confidence appears to be stabilizing. According to the Glassdoor Q4 Employment Confidence Survey1, nearly half (48 percent) of employees2 (including those self-employed) expect their company's outlook to stay the same in the next six months -- up eight points from the prior quarter. In addition, of those who reported a positive change at their company in the past six months, 65% were awarded new perks (i.e. option to work remotely, casual dress, flexible work hours) and/or new stock; an all-time high since we began tracking in Q2 2011.

As company outlook steadies and perks are added, less than half (40 percent) of employees expect a cost-of-living or pay raise in the next 12 months. This remains relatively unchanged from last quarter. While at the same time, one in three (33 percent) of those employed say they will consider looking for a new job in less than a year if the economy stays the same or improves, and nearly one in five (18 percent) plan to look for a new job in the next three months.

"Now that it appears that the extreme highs and lows are behind us, the slow and conservative pace employees are seeing within their own employment situation is causing employees to evaluate if now is the time to see if the grass may be greener with another employer," said Rusty Rueff, Glassdoor career and workplace expert, who ran global HR departments at Electronic Arts and PepsiCo before co-authoring Talent Force: A New Manifesto for the Human Side of Business. "While the past few years have tilted to an employer market, we're leveling out and employees are finding their position to stand upon. It is now more important than ever for companies to engage with employees to find out what will keep them satisfied and strategize new ways to attract and retain their workforce, or face an impending growth in their turnover rate."

The Glassdoor Employment Confidence Survey, conducted online by Harris Interactive, monitors four key indicators of employee confidence: company outlook, job security, salary expectations, and re-hire probability. The Q4 2012 survey also evaluates job search expectations and factors most likely to influence a job candidate's decision on whether or not to accept a job. The survey takes into account feedback from 2,249 U.S. adults, among whom 1,470 are employed or unemployed but looking for work.

Salary, Location & Career Growth Top Factors Influencing Job Search Decisions
As a new wave of job seekers enter the market, employees (including those self-employed) and unemployed job seekers are, perhaps not surprisingly, reporting that salary and compensation are the most important factors that influence their decision to accept a job offer. Location and career growth opportunities also top the list of top factors that impact their decision. Interestingly, company reputation is one of the top five factors job seekers consider when a job offer is presented -- nearly one in five (17 percent) consider a company's reputation when choosing whether or not to accept a job. Other key factors are summarized below:

  • 73% Salary/compensation
  • 55% Location/commute
  • 30% Career growth opportunities
  • 22% Amount of work
  • 17% Company reputation
  • 16% Company values
  • 10% Relationships with managers
  • 10% Frequency of travel required for the job
  • 7% Relationships with peers
  • 6% Senior leadership
  • 2% Corporate social responsibility

Employees Observing Fewer Cutbacks in Compensation, but More Perks

  • Forty-three percent reported their company made changes to the number of staff, organizational structure, compensation and benefits, or other listed activities in the past six months; down three percentage points from last quarter.
  • Of those employees who reported positive changes at their organization, 65 percent were awarded new perks (option to work remotely, casual dress, flexible work hours) and/or new stock; an all-time high since we started tracking in Q2 2011 and the third consecutive quarter to increase.
  • Of those employees who reported negative changes at their organization, 47 percent noted changes or a reduction in compensation; an all-time low since we began tracking in Q1 2009; also a seven percentage point decrease from last quarter.

Employees Expect Their Company Outlook to Stay the Same

  • Almost half (48 percent) of employees (including self-employed) expect their company's outlook to stay the same (neither better nor worse) in the next six months; an eight percentage point increase from last quarter.
  • On the other hand, 40 percent believe their company's outlook will be better in the next six months.
  • Those in the South (44 percent) and the West (44 percent) are more optimistic about their company's outlook, compared to the Midwest (33 percent).
  • Men (46 percent) were significantly more optimistic than women (33 percent) about their company's outlook in the next six months.

Job Market Confidence Holds Steady; Unemployed Slightly More Optimistic

  • Employees' expectations to find a job matched to their experience and current compensation remains unchanged from last quarter at 41 percent.
  • Those unemployed but looking for a job have increased their optimism slightly this quarter to 37 percent; a three percentage point increase from last quarter.

Layoff Concerns Unchanged

  • Employees concerned about being laid off in the next six months holds steady at 17 percent.
  • Employees in the Northeast (22 percent) were significantly more concerned about being laid off when compared to those in the Midwest (12 percent). The South (18 percent) and the West (16 percent) fell in the middle.
  • Employees concerned about coworkers being laid off in the next six months has slightly increased this quarter to 30 percent, up two percentage points from last quarter.
  • Concerns over coworker layoffs were slightly higher in the Northeast (33 percent) and the South (32 percent), compared to the West (24 percent).

Two in Five Expect Pay Raise in Next 12 Months

  • Forty percent of employees expect to receive a pay raise or cost-of-living increase in the next 12 months; 39 percent do not expect a pay raise and 21 percent are not sure.
  • Almost half (48 percent) of employees 45-54 years old do not think they will get a pay raise or cost-of-living increase in the next 12 months, compared to 35 percent of 18-34 year olds and 35 percent of 35-44 year olds.

For more details, please see the full Q4 2012 Glassdoor Confidence Survey Supplement: For complete methodology, please contact pr [at] Glassdoor [dot] com.

NOTE TO WRITERS/PRODUCERS: Graphics and a full quarter-by-quarter survey supplement are available. Please contact pr [at] glassdoor [dot] com for more information.

1 This survey was conducted online within the United States by Harris Interactive on behalf of Glassdoor from November 27-29, 2012 among 2,249 adults ages 18 and older. This online survey is not based on a probability sample and therefore no estimate of theoretical sampling error can be calculated. For complete survey methodology, including weighting variables, please contact Samantha Zupan or Melissa Tracy at

2 For the purposes of this study "employees" were defined as U.S. adults 18+ employed full time and/or part time unless otherwise indicated.

About Glassdoor
Glassdoor is a career community that is changing the way people find jobs and companies recruit top talent. Members can uncover Inside Connections at a company through their Facebook network, see the latest job listings, as well as get access to proprietary user-generated content including company-specific salary reports, ratings and reviews, CEO approval ratings, interview questions and reviews, office photos, and more. Plus, employers can get involved in the conversation through Glassdoor's suite of recruiting solutions that reach target job candidates when they're making decisions on where to apply or what job offer to accept. Glassdoor, founded in 2007, is backed by Benchmark Capital, Sutter Hill Ventures, Battery Ventures and DAG Ventures. More information about Glassdoor can be found on its blog, and by following the company on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn. is a registered trademark of Glassdoor, Inc.

About Harris Interactive
Harris Interactive is one of the world's leading market research firms, leveraging research, technology, and business acumen to transform relevant insight into actionable foresight. Known widely for the Harris Poll® and for pioneering innovative research methodologies, Harris offers proprietary solutions in the areas of market and customer insight, corporate brand and reputation strategy, and marketing, advertising, public relations and communications research. Harris possesses expertise in a wide range of industries including health care, technology, public affairs, energy, telecommunications, financial services, insurance, media, retail, restaurant, and consumer package goods. Additionally, Harris has a portfolio of multi-client offerings that complement our custom solutions while maximizing our client's research investment. Serving clients in more than 196 countries and territories through our North American and European offices, Harris specializes in delivering research solutions that help us -- and our clients -- stay ahead of what's next. For more information, please visit