Quality-of-Life Benefits Inspire Employees

Published by Kathleen Houlihan on

In the past, high school students had three choices; 1. go to college, 2. go into the workforce via the trades, or 3. go into the military. Today, these three options have evolved into countless options including badges, internships, co-ops, and certificates, just to name a few. According to Credential Engine, there are close to 1 million credentialing options in the USA alone. These new educational pathways have increased the number of nefarious training options designed to take a students’ money while offering limited employment opportunities upon completion.  Undecided career seekers are mesmerized by clever marketing campaigns with false employment promises making it very difficult for them to find the best pathway forward.

Business leaders like Whole Foods CEO, John Mackey believe that young people don’t want to work, but it is more likely that young people just don’t know who to trust and they, often, do not know who they want to become, making it very difficult to chart a pathway forward. Students are frozen in fear, not being able to find the best career on-ramps that match their interests and aspirational goals. These individuals are not shown how working for a company like Whole Foods, even entry-level, provides tremendous opportunities for networking, education, and professional growth.

Social media is flooded with volumes of data about high demand career options and careers with the highest salaries. These factors might be important to a job seeker; but they are far from the best measures to help candidates find and prepare for their dream career. The practice of pushing supply and demand or high income logic onto career seekers limits their chances of finding interesting career pathways that would help them to navigate the workforce system more effectively. These types of traditional workforce data limit career seekers ability to discover ways of making a career doing what they love.

Reimagining talent needs to focus on helping students/entry-level employees to discover opportunities that make them excited to learn and grow; where they see personal potential for career success. If the individuals can find jobs that match their passions, help them onramp, and gain requisite skills matching their interests, they will want to work. Employees will see work as a learning experience and they will want to grow with the company so they become the best versions of themselves. Providing educational benefits to employees has been shown to create loyal employees and increase job satisfaction, while offering 5x ROI, according to several studies conducted by the Lumnia Foundation.

Innovative companies use quality-of-life benefits (QoL), like education, in their talent recruitment portfolio to reimagine talent acquisition.  The most effective quality-of-life programs support local communities by creating an ecosystem that attracts new businesses and commerce to the environment. Building a community of engagement, through QoL programs, highlights what is happening locally and it helps individuals find career pathways to success. Reimagined talent acquisition, using QoL, incorporates the three-pronged work-learn system of the past; college, trades, and military experiences, into a new blended system that helps networked employees navigate this new complex work-learn environment as it inspires and delights career seekers as they on-ramp to dream careers. QoL programs are the best option to attract talent, improve working conditions, and provide more profitability, while reducing hiring costs. For businesses struggling to attract and retain talent consider QoL programs because we’ve found that it is the best strategy to reimagine talent acquisition into a system that works for everyone.


Kathleen Houlihan

Kathleen Houlihan is a leader in workforce innovation and she is the Founder of an agency that reimagines talent acquisition and optimizes the system for candidates and employers. Her company, Dream2Career, provides human-centric ROI solutions that filter-in candidates who exceed expectations in the workplace.

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Quality-of-Life Benefits Inspire Employees – National Career-Readiness Association · August 15, 2022 at 5:36 pm

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