9 in 10 employees expect mental health support and inclusion programs from employers

Deniza Cristian 12/05/2023 | 12:21

This year’s winners of the Randstad Romania Employer Brand Research, the world’s most comprehensive employer brand research, were announced during the gala event Randstad Romania Employer Brand Awards. Microsoft is the most attractive employer, for the second time in a raw, HP took second place, and IBM Romania third place.


IT is the most attractive sector for employees, while top workforce criteria when choosing a job reveal an interesting dynamic: in addition to salary, which remains the preferred one for a few years, work-life balance has increased in importance, competing directly with career progression for the 4th spot.

“At the 2019 edition, the champions of the employer brand in Romania stepped on the stage of the Randstad Employer Brand Awards gala for the first time. Since then, the study has gained a well-deserved place as a valuable resource of solutions and trends regarding the management of human resources, on the local market. Randstad Romania team was made up of 40 people, that year. The first post-pandemic Randstad Romania Employer Brand Awards gala finds us with a formidable team, whose number has tripled. We are 120, and we have reached a strong presence on the local market, with consolidated and diversified services. We congratulate the winners of this year’s top and thank them for providing examples of good practices, successful models, to the market, contributing to its healthy evolution”, says Mihaela Maranca, Country Manager, Randstad Romania.

According with Randstad Romania Employer Brand 2023, Romania best performing companies by sector are Microsoft (IT), HP (services), HAVI Logistics (logistics), Antibiotice (pharma production & distribution), Nokia Networks (telecom), Robert Bosch (automotive), Philips (manufacturing), Heineken Romania (FMCG), Oscar Downstream (oil & gas), ING Bank N.V., Amsterdam (finance), eMAG (retail).

“The HP culture is what makes our company a special place—and we have continuously evolved our culture in ways that strengthen our business and empower our people. In Romania, our focus is to become a true digital site, investing in the digital upskilling of our people, in bringing new and more complex roles within HP. We have taken significant steps in developing both our individual contributors and our people managers: change management, agile and technical certifications were one of our priorities for individual contributors, while for people managers we have invested in their leadership skills and ability to foster innovation and drive change. In line with our CSR pledges, we have encouraged and created volunteering opportunities for our employees, encouraging them to pursue their passions outside work and contributing to the overall development of the community”, says Raluca Gadiuta, Country HR Leader, HP Romania.

Romanian employees consider the IT sector to be the most attractive, while all industries increased in attractiveness. The IT companies strongly differentiate themselves from the pack, as they are now found more attractive than any other sector by quite a margin (10% more popular than the second in top, services). FMCG seems to recover in attractiveness and is now back on the rise after a big dip in 2022.

What do the employees want, in 2023?

In Romania, the five most important factors influencing the choice of workplace have not changed in the last three years. According to Randstad’s recent research, the most important thing is still the attractive salary and benefits package, which is a more important driver for Romanians than the European average (the European average index is 154, the Romanian one is 161. The index takes 100 as the average value of the drivers’ importance and it relates the individual indicators to it). The second most important aspect is the pleasant workplace atmosphere, which also shows a slight difference compared to the European average (Europe 140, Romania 148), so it is particularly important for Romanian employees how they feel at their workplace and how their manager treats them. In the difficult-to-predict economic environment, the importance of the employer’s financial stability has increased significantly compared to last year, and compared with the European countries surveyed, Romania index is significantly higher (Europe 109, Romania 142). Salary is not the most important driving force everywhere: in Germany, job security, in Italy and England, work-life-balance, and in Norway, the pleasant working atmosphere came first this year.

For men, a financially stable workplace and the use of modern technologies are more important, while for women, the option of location and home office is more important when choosing a workplace. Those with a higher education value the possibility of remote work more than the location of the workplace. For white-collar workers, the home office is important, and for manual workers, the importance of the workplace atmosphere and location stand out.

Based on the results of Randstad’s employer brand and employee preference survey over the past ten years, it appears that companies cannot keep pace with the market in terms of salary, in the context of a growing shortage of candidates in many professions.

Cost of living crisis major reason to leave employers

More than half of employees (56%) in Romania resigned or consider leaving their employer because of receiving a too low salary due to the rising cost of living. It is even more important to women (60%) than to men (52%). Receiving an offer one cannot refuse is also a reason to leave for almost half (45%), and while this does not happen frequently, the current situation does leave employers vulnerable for opportunistic job offers based purely on salary. Lack of career growth opportunities and work-life balance are just as important to address. Both are reasons to leave for 1 in 3 employees and something employers underperform on.

Almost one in two job seekers (46%) use their personal connections when looking for a job. It is also the most successful channel when it comes to finding a job (35% job switchers). Another offline channel on the list, recruitment agencies, also has a relatively high success rate, with 26% of job switchers using them to find a job.

Facebook, which is the most popular social media channel used to look for new jobs (87% from total social media), also shows a small decline but remains on top by far. In total, about 1 in 4 who switched jobs found their job via Facebook. In the other hand, personal connections are key for employers when searching for talent, as these are most used and also most successful.

Regarding remote working, it has stabilized over the past two years. Currently 31% work (partly) remote, which is almost the same as in 2022 (30%). Amongst those working remotely and hybrid, the split between the two has not changed considerably, with both being close to equal.

Around 9 in 10 employees expect some form of diversity & inclusion (D&I) /mental health support from their employer. 1 in 5 go as far as saying they would rather be unemployed than work for an employer that does not align with their values and this is 1 in 3 amongst those aged 18-24. Employers need to start developing strategies and policies on these matters, as we can expect them to become even more relevant in the coming years.

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Deniza Cristian | 06/06/2024 | 16:28
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