Women’s top career priorities revealed

By Lee Biggins, founder and managing director of CV-Library

When did you last think about your career path?

Women’s top career priorities revealed
Image via Shutterstock

We often find ourselves plugging away in our day-to-day job and rarely take time out to think about what we want from our current and future roles and what we can do to get there.

At CV-Library, we are always keen to find out exactly what workers are thinking and our recent research explored the topic of ‘career priorities’, bringing to light some really interesting findings. Below, I explain these in more detail, exploring the top factors that women consider when looking for a job and what businesses should do to accommodate these needs:

1. Job role: It goes without saying that your overall job role is important in your day-to-day working life and this was the top deciding factor for women across the UK. Alongside this, over half (54.6%) said that their job title was important to them, with nearly a third (29.9%) stating that they’d be more likely to accept a job if it had the word ‘manager’ in it. Businesses should therefore consider the types of jobs they are offering, and focus on offering titles which accurately reflect the job spec in question.

2. Salary: Money is always a major consideration when it comes to staying or leaving a job and over two thirds (68.9%) of women said that their salary is more important than their job title when looking for a new role. Women also placed salary as their second most important aspect when choosing a job. Interestingly though, the majority (84.2%) of women said that they would take a pay cut or a smaller salary if it meant having their dream job. For businesses, offering competitive salaries, as well as staying abreast with industry trends, is important, but should not be the be all and end all; it’s clear that many women are willing to make compromises.

3. Location: The location of a job is also important to women, coming in at third place on their list of priorities. Alongside this, nearly two thirds (62%) said they would not relocate for a job, which is understandable, but can limit an organisation’s talent pool. Many businesses combat this by offering flexible working opportunities, to help out workers that may have further to travel. Some go as far as allowing employees to work remotely altogether. Working out what’s best for your business, and staff, and finding a happy medium for both parties, is key.

4. Opportunity for progression: Nearly three quarters (71.2%) of women said career progression was important to them. This ambitious nature can pay off, as long as businesses are willing to accommodate their needs by offering exciting training schemes that help to push women up the ladder. Those that don’t could see their workers looking for these opportunities elsewhere. Growing talent within and alongside your business is a strategy that can certainly pay off.

5. The team: The people we work with can make or break our time within an organisation. Whether this is your immediate reports, your manager or more senior members of staff, every individual within a business can contribute to our happiness, or unhappiness at work. Therefore it’s unsurprising that many women place this as one of their top career priorities. Monitoring how teams get along and rearranging structures if there are any issues can help to retain talent and continue to contribute to your business’ success.

Being able to identify key career priorities is important and while money can be a key motivator for staff, it’s not always the main one. As a business, understanding what your staff want in their career will help you to offer the best incentives, creating a happy, loyal and productive workforce, as well as helping to attract talented new recruits.

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