Qualtrics found that the leading workplace trends for 2023 will include employees looking for assurance that both their job and their employer are on solid footing.

It is also expected that organisations that support work-life balance will be rewarded with employees willing to give more within working hours.

Also, companies will have to address friction from inefficient processes and technology to improve productivity and relieve symptoms of employee burnout.

Highlighting shared values between employees and organisations will be the top way to retain workers.

Employees are looking for assurance that both their job and their employer are on solid footing

Companies will be squeezed by budget cuts at a time when employee satisfaction with their pay is dropping – 53 percent of UK employees are satisfied, a significant drop from 61 percent a year ago. And only a third (35%) of UK employees believe their pay is based on their actual performance.

At the same time, companies are looking for ways to trim their budgets, including reducing their overall headcount while keeping top performers. Employees who are satisfied with their pay are 9 percent more likely to stay at a company for three or more years, so a decline in pay satisfaction could push some top performers to look for other opportunities.

“Pay has always been a key hygiene factor for employees, and, unsurprisingly, we’re seeing them place even more importance on it this year. Businesses will need to find ways to address this importance, particularly for their high performers. With constrained budgets that may hinder large pay increases, our data indicates that getting really clear about the fairness of pay and performance evaluation will be beneficial,” said Sarah Marrs, Director of Qualtrics.

Workplace trends: organisations that support work-life balance will be rewarded 

When they believe they have a good work-life balance, 64 percent of UK employees are willing to go above and beyond for their company. Conversely, only 25 percent with a poor work-life balance would do the same.

According to Marrs, “This is where we really see the workforce pushing back on overwork. Employers who show they are mindful of their people’s well-being and respect boundaries will likely see increased effort and therefore sustained productivity as a result.”

Companies will have to address friction from inefficient processes and technology 

The pandemic exposed and elevated broken processes that impede worker productivity, and introduced new challenges at the same time. Less than two-thirds (59%) of UK workers say work processes enable them to be productive, down from 63 percent a year ago.

Beyond inefficient processes, fewer employees say their technology helps them be productive compared to last year, falling from 61 percent to 56 percent.

For example, the rapid shift to new technologies during the pandemic made it difficult to introduce cohesive tech strategies, leading to teams using different apps to perform the same tasks or requiring multiple apps to complete a single process.

The combined effect of these challenges is 40 percent of employees showing symptoms of burnout, and 37 percent say they feel emotionally drained from their work.

“Heavy workloads, inefficient processes and lack of cohesive tech strategies are all contributors to employee burnout. Burnout is exacerbated by frustration and alienation – the right listening tools can help employers understand the challenges their people are facing, and implement changes that alleviate frustrations,” said Marrs.

Workplace trends: highlighting shared values will be the top way for companies to retain workers

Sharing a company’s values is the top driver of employee retention as workers place more importance on belonging to organisations that reflect their beliefs. When employees believe their organisation is living their values, 63 percent are likely to stay for three or more years and they are 7 percent less likely to be at risk of burnout.

But people also want to be able to advance their career to stay at a company – and less than two-thirds (58%) of UK employees believe their career goals can be met at their current company.

Without the availability of ways to learn new skills or develop existing ones, talented employees may look elsewhere for professional growth.





Amelia Brand is the Editor for HRreview, and host of the HR in Review podcast series. With a Master’s degree in Legal and Political Theory, her particular interests within HR include employment law, DE&I, and wellbeing within the workplace. Prior to working with HRreview, Amelia was Sub-Editor of a magazine, and Editor of the Environmental Justice Project at University College London, writing and overseeing articles into UCL’s weekly newsletter. Her previous academic work has focused on philosophy, politics and law, with a special focus on how artificial intelligence will feature in the future.