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Digitalisation proves key for UK employers supporting new hires

Survey from SD Worx finds that Brits have generally positive experience joining and working for businesses

Despite turbulence and disruption in the business world over the past year, employees still rate their experience in employment positively. Three in five (59.7%) UK employees have a very positive perception of their current work environment. And one in five (21%) in the UK say that they are better off in their roles compared with the period at the start of COVID-19 pandemic.

This is according to new research from SD Worx, the HR and payroll services provider, which surveyed 5,000 employers from five European countries: Belgium, France, Germany, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom. The survey included both smaller and larger companies across various industries.

Across Europe, eight out of ten (78.5%) are positive about the recruitment process. Three quarters (76.3%) of UK employees said they had positive or very positive experience while being hired to their current role. But this is by no means the best score, as employees in the Netherlands (88.2%), Belgium (80.4%) and Germany (77.1%) tended to be more pleased with the hiring experience. French workers trail slightly behind of the UK at 71.4% happy with their hiring experience.

Only one in twenty (5%) have a poor onboarding experience in Europe, with four out of five (77.8%) positively rating the support and guidance during the induction process. Positive hiring processes correlate with long-term job satisfaction, but remaining competent in a role often requires continuous training. Two-thirds of European workers (66%) believe that they need to undergo continuous training to accommodate the changing nature of their job.

Digital training and learning resources are integral to retaining talent. When asked about what formal training and development opportunities were offered at a job, but the amount of employees across Europe who utilise digital tools and resources differs. One in five (21.6%) of UK employees use e-learning and webinar opportunities, compared to 20.8% in the Netherlands, 18.8% in Germany, 16.8% in Belgium and a lower 11% in France. Incidentally, with combined training across digital and physical channels, the UK ranks highest in training satisfaction, with over half (52.6%) saying that they have positive training experiences.

Colette Philp, UK HR Country Lead at SD Worx says: “With the various shifts in workstyle over the past year, employers need to ensure they offer stability when attracting and recruiting talent. Despite the changes in the job market, most employees in Europe have good experiences when joining companies. This satisfaction is predicated on providing good resources and support systems for people to grow and progress in their career. Employers that fail to provide support, especially with digital tools and resources, will face the challenge of a disengaged workforce.”

    About the survey

    HR and payroll specialist SD Worx commissioned a survey to gain a better understanding of employees' entire employee journey and work experience at European level. This included input from employees, self-employed persons, seconded staff and temporary workers. The survey was conducted among 5,000 employers from five countries and covered the entire recruitment process from an employee's perspective. The process includes attracting new employees, recruitment, onboarding, carrying out the work, development and career advancement, remuneration and offboarding. The survey took place in April 2021 in the following countries: Belgium, France, Germany, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom. The survey included both smaller and larger companies across various industries.