Work-life balance: What do people really want?

New Zealanders care about work-life balance. But what does that really mean? 

SEEK’s latest Laws of Attraction data shows work-life balance is a key consideration for workers. This isn’t surprising, given the experiences many people have had in their working lives in the past few years.    

Work-life balance encompasses a range of factors – things like flexible working hours, additional leave, or being able to work remotely. And what’s clear is that work-life balance means different things in different industries, depending on industry conditions and specific job requirements.  

For example, the ability to work remotely is more important to workers in the Accounting, Consulting & Strategy industry, whereas time in lieu is more important to workers in Hospitality & Tourism. 

So, what does work-life balance mean to workers in your industry? Select your industry from the table below to find out: 

Choose your industry

Focus on what job seekers want

Making sure that what your company offers job seekers will meet their needs can mean you get better quality candidates and are more likely to retain good staff.

It follows that clearly mentioning the most important, relevant work-life balance factors in your job ads can make a role more attractive to people.

Make sure your bullet points and summary address the factors that workers in your industry care about most. For example, if remote working arrangements are important to people in your industry, show how your company supports remote working.

Aimee Hutton, Head of Customer Insights and Strategy at SEEK, says job ads are an important opportunity to show your empathy and understanding of what people really want. “It’s like showing candidates that you speak their language – you know what’s important to them and here’s how you can make it happen,” Hutton says.

Salary is also important

In addition to work-life balance, salary is also one of the most important factors for job seekers when they're searching for a new role. In fact, there’s a 80.3% increase in job applications when salary is shown on a job ad, SEEK data shows.

Work-life balance and salary are both key considerations for all workers and job seekers, when they’re searching for and comparing jobs. But what work-life balance breaks down to is different for different people.

Understanding what’s most likely to attract people to a role in your industry can help you to fine-tune your message and hire more effectively.