Earlier this week, LinkedIn released its brand new ‘Top Attractors’ list, showcasing the world’s most desirable employers, and the top Australian employers, according to its data. They took a new and unique approach that didn’t focus on opinion polls and surveys, but rather, according to business journalist Suzy Welch, identified ‘the companies where people most eagerly want to land jobs, and stay in them when they do, as determined by 12 metrics that measure literally billions of online actions taken by LinkedIn’s 433 million members. Among those metrics: the number of views and applications per job posting on LinkedIn; the number of views of a company’s career page; and employee retention statistics as measured through profile updates.’

The results from the US were perhaps unsurprising: the top five were, in order, Google, Salesforce, Facebook, Amazon and Apple.

The top Australian employers

In Australia, the results were a little different. Here’s the 10 top Australian employers, with the reasons given by LinkedIn for their success:

  1. KPMG – provides stretch assignments and global placements to employees; focuses on the ‘higher purpose’ of every role
  2. PWC – has a policy of ‘total flexibility’ so people can choose when they work, along with challenging assignments
  3. Commonwealth Bank – has a ‘bottom up’ approach to generating ideas; focuses on simplicity, automating simple or repetitive tasks, and continuous improvement
  4. Coles – provides discounts, flexible work options and growth opportunities
  5. Deloitte – offers paid time for pro bono and volunteer work, challenging assignments, extensive training options
  6. Westpac – offers extra annual leave options; focuses on a ‘neighbourhood’ environment in the workplace and learning & development portals
  7. Qantas – provides discounts, extended leave and ‘hack days’
  8. Lion – has a strong focus on an ‘achievement culture’, and offers leave for volunteering and flexible work options
  9. UGL Limited – focuses on equality, fairness, diversity and overcoming bias
  10. CPB Contractors – offers the opportunity to work in various locations, and a culture that encourages growth, collaboration and innovation.

What Australian employees want

LinkedIn also surveyed over 1000 Australian employees in a joint project with Censuswide to determine the factors that were most important to them in deciding where they wanted to work.

We haven’t been able to track down a copy of the actual report – so if you know where to find one, we’d love to hear from you – but according to several sources at LinkedIn, these were some of their findings.

  • Flexibility is a key theme across Australia, with the top Australian employers almost competing with one another to offer greater flexibility, according to a LinkedIn spokesperson
  • 70% of Australian workers were willing to take a pay cut to work for a company with a mission they believe in, and that shares their personal values, according to LinkedIn director of talent solutions Australia & New Zealand, Jason Laufer
  • The top 5 things Australians take into account when choosing whether to work for an employer are:
    • A competitive salary (63%)
    • Opportunity for growth (53%)
    • The health of the business (48%)
    • A short commute (39%)
    • Whether they like their potential boss (37%).

Without seeing the other options included in the survey (and identifying anything that wasn’t included) it’s difficult to draw too many meaningful conclusions from these figures, other than that they obviously matter.

The data reflects general employee wants

Many of these factors mentioned by the top Australian employers quite clearly reflect what we already know about the ‘intangibles’ employees really want at work, such as:

  • Flexibility
  • Meaning and purpose
  • Opportunities for growth
  • Opportunities for innovation
  • Autonomy
  • Transparency
  • Good managers and leaders
  • Fair treatment.

Next week, we’ll delve more deeply into some of these critical factors for employee happiness, engagement and retention and, most importantly, how you can promote them in your workplace.


Do you know what your employees want?  We’ve worked with numerous employers who have tried a broad range of strategies to improve performance, tenure and engagement. Sometimes, it all comes down to asking your employees what they want – in a confidential, secure manner that encourages them to speak freely about their concerns.

We can work with you to develop a survey process that encourages honesty and openness from employees about what they really think about their workplace and the ‘soft’ or intangible factors that are influencing your bottom line, your organisation’s success and its profitability.

Please contact us for an obligation-free discussion that will start you on the road to improving the metrics that matter to your business.