Does Job Security Matter Anymore?

Tower’s Watson released some data recently from a fairly large study of over 32,000 employees and 1,600 HR professionals which ranked critical factors of retaining your employees.   Here are the results:

Not surprising, money pretty much rules as always.  You want me to stay?  Pay Me!

What is surprising is how high up “Job Security” is on the employee side of the study.  For years Millennial experts have been telling us how these young kids don’t care about job security, they care about balance, importance of the work they do, challenging projects, etc.  Apparently, HR got the message, but the kids didn’t!

Studies like this always make me question ‘experts’.  Don’t you get the feeling that millennial experts are really just snake oil salesmen?  Never has a millennial expert said kids care about job security.  “Oh, these kids will work 10-20 jobs in their lifetime!  They are not looking for life time employment.”

So, employers believe job security isn’t important to employees (or probably more truthfully is the fact that employees have very little control over job security), so they push factors like Career Advancement and Challenging Work.  When in reality it’s very Maslow-esque easier than that.  Employees today, much like employees 100 years ago want basically the same thing:

1. Money

2. To know they have a job when they show up in the morning

3.  A chance to move up in the company they work in.

Fairly straightforward.  Fairly easy.  Fairly consistent over time.

The question is, can you deliver this as an employer?

5 thoughts on “Does Job Security Matter Anymore?

  1. I do believe that lack of job security in today’s environment has left most of us regardless of age, race, etc. with some level of dissatisfaction or even major grumpiness. When there was more security there were grumblings among those feeling a bit stuck in a rut, as in “I would rather be doing almost anything else today”. Now many of those same people I am sure wish they had that rut back again. Especially those who may especially be feeling the financial crunch. Not everyone is cut out to be his or her own boss.

  2. Sorry gentlemen, it’s cognitive dissonance, we believe we want job security but if offered a better deal don’t be in the way as we run through the hallway to the door. And then we want job security again.

  3. Ya, Tim. Get you $hi! together… Paul’s right – no one uses Maslow any more. It’s all about Vrooms Expectancy Theory these days. Jk

    1. Money
    2. Camaraderie
    3. BENies (I got 99 problems but flexibility ain’t one)

  4. First – I think all generational “differences” talk is snake oil.

    Second – I don’t think the two positions are mutually exclusive. I think Millennials (and almost all of us now…) will have more jobs in a life time than historical precedence – AND I think we all want job security. What we really, really want is the company to promise us the job – but we reserve the right to job hop when they feel like it. Can you say “entitled much.”

    So I don’t find it too difficult to hold both those positions – no loyalty but deep desire for security – at the same time.

    And don’t bring Maslow into this – it never was meant to be applied in a working environment, it has never been tested or proven and most psychology folks don’t ascribe to it any more. Maslow has become the playground for consultants and patent medicine sellers. Sounds good but don’t do a heck of a lot.

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