Trend: Why Local Candidate Pools Matter

April 30, 2019

Companies don’t gamble millions (or billions) trusting the adage from Field of Dreams, “If you build it, they will come.” Tons of research and sometimes years of negotiations go into the decision of where to locate a business’s headquarters or additional locations. Tax incentives, public infrastructure, available space, proximity to customers and cost of doing business all play into the decision. But, the biggest consideration? The local talent market.

According to the World Economic Forum’s “The Future of Jobs Report 2018,” 74% of companies reported prioritizing local talent availability as their key factor when determining job location decisions.

In The News

Some were surprised when Amazon announced last November that it would open a second headquarters in Northern Virginia and a third in New York City (which it has since retracted after public and political opposition). But, here’s what we know: Arlington County has seen a 13% increase in population in the last decade, with about 230,000 residents. The Northern Virginia location is an 11-minute commute to preferred DC-area airport, Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport, and an 11-minute drive to Capitol Hill. And the area is also home to a dozen higher-education institutions, including noteworthy Georgetown University, University of Maryland, George Washington University, George Mason University and American University.

Motivators For Moving

Contrary to popular belief, salary isn’t the top motivator for people who would consider moving for a job. According to Glassdoor’s “Job Market Trends: Five Hiring Disruptions to Watch in 2019,” good company culture and a strong employment brand matter more. An additional $10,000 in salary predicts candidates are 0.4 percentage points more likely to move. But a one-star higher overall Glassdoor rating translates to 2.5 percentage points more likely to move. That means the one-star higher rating is six times more important than the extra $10,000 a year.

And, interestingly, a company’s DNA is largely solidified by what culture, skills and diversity already exist in the local area. That’s because the local talent pool form the new location’s office culture. So, perhaps, companies should also consider if the newly proposed business location culture matches the company’s existing brand. It will help to ensure continuity across the organization’s culture.

Monster warns of three reasons candidates shouldn’t consider moving for a job: a slight pay increase, a lateral career move and for someone else (with whom you’re not in a committed relationship).

If you’re moving for all the right reasons, this relocation checklist will help you tick every box.

Who Is More Likely to Move?

In short, younger workers, men and more educated workers are more likely to move. According to Glassdoor’s Metro Movers study, for each decade added to a candidate’s age, they are 7 percentage points less likely to move for a job. It makes sense if you think about it: They’re probably more likely to be settled, maybe owning a home and having a family. And men are 3 percentage points more likely to apply for jobs in other metros than women, even controlling for job titles, education and age. Job seekers with master’s degrees are also almost 5 percentage points more likely to relocate for a job.

About 29% of job applications across the nation are to jobs outside the candidate’s metro area. But, interestingly, the most popular moved-to metros depend on where the candidate is coming from. Metros closest to applicants’ current locations are usually exhausted first. But, overall, top destinations include San Francisco; San Jose, CA; New York City; Los Angeles; Washington, D.C.; Chicago; Boston; Seattle; Dallas-Fort Worth; and Austin, TX.

Thinking about making a global move, make these considerations


Read Also: Is Relocating For Work Worth It? 10 Things To Consider


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