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High wages have become most important for young Poles. Three years ago it was a friendly atmosphere at work

More than half of young Poles positively assess their chances on the labour market (64.2%). High salaries are crucial for 57% of respondents, the offer of benefits for 82%, and almost half of the surveyed young Poles (49.9%) check the company's social involvement. Flexible working hours and the possibility to work remotely are "mandatory" benefits for 37.2% and 41.5% of respondents respectively. Employers who want to stand out on the labour market should offer young people a shorter working week and additional paid holidays - according to the 3rd edition of the joint report by PwC Polska, Well.hr and Absolvent Consulting "Young Poles on the Labour Market".

Download the report "Young Poles on the Labour Market"

The last three years have presented students and graduates with challenges that previous generations did not have to face - the Covid pandemic, the new 'normal', the war in Ukraine - they have changed working styles, influenced the market and the career opportunities of young people. Students and graduates are trying to find their way in a changing and unpredictable world and start a career on their own terms. In the 3rd edition of the survey, we once again looked at students and graduates entering the market to find out how, from the perspective of the past year's experiences, they evaluate their chances, what issues they consider important while choosing a job, how they check the credibility of an employer, what changes in their attitudes and expectations have taken place over the last few years and what the consequences are for employers.

"Graduates point to the need for a flexible approach to work and for the duties they perform to be meaningful. This is a valuable clue for employers to consider whether their employment model needs to be adapted to modern trends sought by employees. There are many more options - B2B, task-based working, hybrid working, flexible benefit models or shorter working weeks. This is important because over the last few years, we have seen how the priorities of the young generation of Poles entering the labour market are changing, how the importance of high salaries or flexible working hours is increasing, and how the importance of gaining professional experience or professional stability is decreasing"

- says Katarzyna Komorowska, PwC Polska partner from People & Organization team.

What is most important to you at work?

(choose 5 most important aspects)

2020

2021

2022

High wages

42.5%

46.9%

56.8%

Gaining work experience

49.4%

49.8%

43.4%

Friendly atmosphere

50.0%

46.0%

42.5%

Sense of purpose of the work

43.2%

43.4%

40.3%

Flexible working hours

31.7%

30.9%

37.9%

Ability to maintain a work-life balance

31.0%

33.6%

36.5%

Ability to work remotely

22.9%

22.3%

32.8%

Work according to interests

36.4%

36.4%

31.0%

Stable and secure employment

35.9%

31.1%

26.8%

Interesting tasks

32.9%

30.0%

24.9%

Low stress level

21.7%

19.1%

23.5%

Extensive training package

27.2%

22.9%

21.2%

Working with new technologies

15.9%

15.9%

15.4%

International working environment

10.3%

15.0%

12.4%

Work commensurate with skills

16.7%

13.9%

13.7%

Independence in decision-making

9.4%

9.9%

9.5%

Fast track promotion

5.7%

9.0%

9.5%

Teamwork

9.5%

10.6%

9.0%

Working for a socially responsible company

X

7.2%

5.9%

Working in a young team

5.8%

5.1%

5.8%

Polish capital

1.9%

1.1%

1.1%

Asked whether the war in Ukraine has affected their job prospects, young Poles are divided: 37% of them think yes, almost as many think no. 27% of students have no opinion on this issue. Graduates and students who have already taken up employment declare that the war did not influence their situation on the labour market. For the first time in 3 years, young people are optimistic about the future - 64.2% of them believe that in comparison with the previous year, their chances on the labour market have improved. This perception of the market situation is probably influenced by the economic recovery after the Covid-19 pandemic and the large number of offers addressed to students and graduates. 17% of young people believe their job prospects have worsened, while 18.7% believe they are the same as a year ago. In comparison, in 2021 almost half of the respondents (48.7%) assessed that due to the pandemic their opportunities on the labour market have changed for the worse. Respondents who have already taken a job are particularly positive about their labour market opportunities.

"The pandemic has taught young people that they can learn and work from anywhere, moreover, they are convinced that the possibility of choosing the place and time of work has a positive impact on their productivity. They follow with interest information about new solutions implemented in Poland and abroad, such as shorter working week or additional days off. They believe that such solutions positively distinguish employers. At the same time, they attach great importance to social wellbeing - in subsequent editions of the survey, good relations with colleagues at work and a supportive boss, preferably one who can combine the roles of an authority and a colleague, are becoming increasingly important to them. On the labour market, it will be easiest to compete for young talents with employers who will provide young people with a sense of freedom and, at the same time, create a working environment conducive to building good relations"

- says Magdalena Pancewicz, co-founder of Well.hr, a wellbeing and communication strategist.

Flexible working hours and the possibility to work remotely are a 'must' benefit for 37.2% and 41.5% of respondents respectively. Access to training is important for 37.2% of respondents. Among the most important benefits are also health insurance (27.1%), and private medical care (32.8%). Additional days of paid holiday and a shorter working week are important benefits for respectively: 10.8% and 9.5% of respondents. The employer can additionally distinguish itself by having a shorter working week, as indicated by 31.1% of those surveyed. For 22.7% additional paid holiday days are important and according to 18.7% of respondents the employer would attract their attention by developing their passions.

"Let's strike the phrase 'competitive salary' from the vocabulary of HR, EB,and administration teams. A salary higher than the market average, just as a salary equal to the market average without indicating a specific amount or salary range is a fairy tale that no young generation will believe in. Money for generation Z is not and will never be a taboo subject. It often violates the comfort zone of employers in the organisation-candidate relationship. Wrongly so. Let's use the report and the new findings to design understanding communications that treat future talent as real partners. Let's refresh our storytelling style. Let's do it calorically. Let's understand the process as we create the best possible workplace every day. Let's invite everyone to co-create it! Celebrate every 'done' on the 'to do' list. This is the current formula for an effective dialogue with young participants of the labour market in the world of changing realities"

- says Krzysztof Ciok, head of Absolvent Consulting.

Professional success is for 24.9% of respondents work that is a passion. For 15.8% of young people it is a sense of meaning in work. Success is also indicated by high salaries (21.7%). Other factors for success are combining work with travelling (9.6%), position of an expert (8.2%) or running one's own company (7.6%). According to young Poles, in the future the following competences will be most valued on the labour market: openness and quick adaptation to changes, combining different skills, quick learning and IT skills. Indications concerning competences most important on the labour market have hardly changed since 2021.

The study was carried out using an online survey in March and April 2022 on a sample of 3207 respondents. Responses from people under 27 years of age were included in the analysis(N=2023).

 

Contact us

Jakub Kurasz

Jakub Kurasz

Head of Communications, Poland, PwC Poland

Tel: +48 601 289 381

Piotr Kołomycki

Piotr Kołomycki

PR Expert, PwC Poland

Tel: +48 519 506 606

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