Majority of Canadians would change jobs for retirement savings

By Sheryl Smolkin

What’s most important to you when you are looking for a new job? A higher salary? Career development opportunities? Dental benefits? You may be surprised to learn that a new survey from ADP Canada reveals that retirement benefits such as a pension or a group Registered Retirement Savings Plan (RRSP) can be a deciding factor in a job change.

According to the survey, over three-quarters of Canadian workers (77%) say they would consider jumping ship if, all other things being equal, another employer offered retirement support. Furthermore, there was no significant difference in willingness among different age groups, with almost 78% of Millennial workers saying retirement benefits would prompt a job change.

Employees also report that medium-sized businesses (51-500 employees) are the most at risk to lose talent (86%) if they do not offer a retirement savings arrangement as compared to small businesses with under 51 employees (70%) or larger organizations with over 500 staff (74%).

“We were surprised to see the difference in willingness to change jobs among employees in mid-sized companies, versus smaller organizations“ says Sooky Lee, Division Vice President and General Manager HR Business Process Outsourcing at ADP Canada. “This could be because employees in larger organizations expect their employers to have more robust programs around retirement.”

Although the data shows that retirement support is a competitive factor, employers should note that compensation takes many forms, and is just one factor in employee retention. “In a competitive labour market, retaining top talent becomes more difficult, so organizations should combine a competitive financial package with other perks.” Lee explains.

Other factors important to survey participants “beyond the money” include:

  1. Working Remotely: Some employees may appreciate the flexibility of working from home regularly or on a casual basis.
  2. Flex-time: Flexible hours can allow workers to manage busy home and work commitments, which can decrease their likelihood to jump ship.
  3. Compressed work weeks: Some companies offer employees the option of working a little longer for four days so they can take a fifth day or half-day off. Consider special summer hours that let employees slip out a little early on Fridays.
  4. Extra time off: Offering someone extra time away from the office to unwind is a nice way to say thank you for long hours or show appreciation for good work.
  5. Casual day or casual workplace: Dressing down to support a charity or as part of your corporate culture can boost employee satisfaction.
  6. Gift of giving back: Give employees time to volunteer in their communities or provide donation-matching programs.

The Saskatchewan Pension Plan offers employers the opportunity to add a smart, simple and flexible pension plan to their total compensation package. There is no cost to join or set up payroll deductions for the plan and no required payments. Contributions can be made by the business, employees or both.

SPP is locked-in until age 55 following the initial six-month refund period. This ensures that that contributions made by the employer and the employee are used for retirement. SPP is also portable so when employees move away they can continue the pension plan the company started for them.

For information about SPP for business, click here.

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