01 Aug 2023

Attraction and Retention – How to make the most of the “Emotional Salary” (1)

When it comes to attracting and retaining key staff perhaps it’s time to tap further into the emotional side of our human make up. The emotional salary touches on emotional gains rather than monetary benefits we gain from work.

For the purposes of this blog I am going to focus on how to utilise the emotional benefits that can come from the make up of total salary.

New staff start their emotional journey during the recruitment process, so setting up a positive impression throughout the process is key.

Providing a base pay that meets or exceeds market rate sends a positive signal, along with offering a variety of benefits tailored to the individual further continues the positive emotions candidates feel towards your company and culture.

For existing staff, the annual (or more often) salary chat needs to be handled the same way – especially for those “super stars’ you need to retain.

Hays Salary Data 23/24 Survey has just been released and a key finding is that only 26% of employees are satisfied with their current benefits. These are the things that are over and above base pay. Historically we have seen offerings such life insurance, health insurance, cars, car allowance or a car park. Other benefits have included Training, EAP Employee Assistance Programmes or having professional fees covered.

The key to attracting and retaining great candidates using the emotional salary is to listen and engage in individuals own personal journey’s and have the flexibility in benefit offerings to fulfil:
• Individual values – what matters the most to someone, then align to their work or your workplace vision and values.
• Individual purpose – what is their purpose and how can your company work to achieve that.
• Provide work life balance options – it’s all about flexi work options.
• Show career pathways to achieve values and goals – show next steps and learning to get there.
• More annual leave – 58% of employees value over 20 days of annual leave.
• Or different types of leave eg birthday leave, time to do community work
• A range of mental and physical health and wellbeing options e.g., Health insurance, dollars for wellbeing and health, EAP, professional supervision.
• What you do for the community, sustainability or the ability to learn from well-regarded others

If you can better understand WIIFT – “What’s in it for them” – then you will be well on the way to attracting and retaining your best performers.
To chat further about the emotional salary journey or pay at your place then reach out to Emma at emma@everestpeople.co.nz or 027 213 8808.

1 – Hays Salary Data 23/24


– Emma Worseldine, People & Culture Specialist