Best Employers in 2018: How do Experienced Candidates Choose a Job?

26/ 04/ 2019

KYIV, 25 APRIL 2019. Globalization, technology and demographic changes are global trends that affect labor market and change rules of the game while struggling for talents. Companies in Ukraine and around the world recognize that attracting and retaining personnel is becoming increasingly difficult, and they are paying considerable attention to the employer brand. According to the results of the EY study “General Industry Compensations and Benefits Survey – 2018”, this issue remains in the top 5 main priorities of the personnel policy of Ukrainian companies, and such categories as “Employer Brand Development” and “Launching the HR-brand” are increasingly noted among the key performance indicators of HR departments.

EY “Best Employer” is an annual survey that helps to better understand what attracts experienced candidates. In 2018, more than 750 experienced candidates from various industries and regions of Ukraine were interviewed. The survey has been conducted from September to December 2018.

More detailed information about the research results

Employer attractiveness factors in 2018

The main criteria for choosing an employer remained unchanged compared with the previous year – most often candidates pay attention to the company’s brand image on the market and wages, as indicated by 68% and 67% of the respondents respectively. The gap between these factors has narrowed in the past three years, and, ultimately, the company’s image became most required in 2018. Corporate culture is also in the top 3 criteria for choosing an employer – it was indicated by 63% of respondents. Along with the corporate culture, personal and professional growth remains important for the respondents (63%). The possibility of career growth (60%) and gaining international experience (56%) were also noted among other key factors of attractiveness. In addition, professional candidates are increasingly paying attention to working conditions and work schedule.

The most attractive industries and employers

The most attractive areas for experienced candidates have not changed over the past few years. The IT sector remains in the first place, the second and third places are occupied by the sector of production and sale of consumer goods (55% of mentions) and professional services (21% of mentions). The attractiveness of the transport and logistics sectors increased most significantly compared with the previous year (by 5 positions), while legal services decreased (also by 5 positions). The insurance sector and the hotel and restaurant business remain the least attractive sectors in 2018.

During the study, candidates had the opportunity to name the three best employers in their opinion. In 2018, more than 400 unique companies were named by respondents, among which the most attractive on the Ukrainian market were the following (in alphabetical order): Ciklum, Coca-Cola, EPAM, Google, Japan Tobacco International, Microsoft, Nestlé, Philip Morris Ukraine and SoftServe, as well as the Big Four auditing and consulting companies.

Sources of information about employers

According to the survey, the key sources of information about employers are Internet and mass media. Among online sources, the most popular are social networks, companies’ websites and employment sites (72%, 62% and 46% of mentions respectively).

80% of candidates opted mass media as a source of information about employers, 97% of them receive information from online media. At the same time, according to the results of the “General Industry Compensations and Benefits Survey – 2018”, only 27% of companies promote their employer brand through the media, losing opportunities to increase the awareness among candidates.

Business events are the third most popular source of information about a company. Same as last year, 69% of respondents indicated that they receive information about the employer at events, and about a third – at networking events. Personal and business relationships remain an important source of information, since more than half of all respondents cited “Family and Relatives” and “Cooperation with the Company” as sources when looking for an employment.

Reasons for finding a new job

The main factor that pushes for an active job search is negative atmosphere in the team, which was mentioned by 64% of the respondents. Interestingly, women indicated this reason much more often than men (68% of women versus 54% of men). In addition, among other mentioned factors are limited opportunities for professional and personal development and career growth, as well as poor relations with the direct supervisor.

Respondents could also provide their own answer in the comments section. Most of these comments were related to low wages.

The perfect leader for experienced candidates

In 2018, respondents were asked to choose qualities and traits of an ideal manager. Most respondents agreed that the main quality of an ideal manager is his/her interest in the development of an employee. In addition, respondents actively opted ‘respect towards an employee’ and ‘strategic vision’.

Mobility of candidates

In 2018, 50% of the polled candidates indicated that they were ready to relocate for finding employment within Ukraine and 77% were ready to move to work abroad. The proportion of people willing to relocate within the country continues to decrease from year to year (the trend has been observed over the past five years). The most attractive cities within Ukraine are (in descending order of popularity): Lviv, Kyiv, Odesa, Dnipro, Kharkiv.

Even though 77% of respondents indicated their willingness to relocate abroad for an employment, only 54% of them are ready to relocate within the next three years. There is a clear relationship between the willingness to move and the level of knowledge of foreign languages – the higher the level of knowledge, the more respondents consider the possibility of moving. The most popular relocation countries are the United States, Germany, Poland, Canada and the United Kingdom.

About the Study

EY has been conducting “Best Employer Survey” in Ukraine since 2005. The purpose of the study is to analyze the attractiveness of employers on the labor market, determine the preferences of candidates when choosing a job and make practical recommendations for managing the employer brand. For purposes of the survey, respondents could name up to three employers which they find most attractive, and select from the proposed industry lists a list of companies they are interested in. In addition, candidates identify attractiveness factors and sources of information about employers, and answer other questions that help identify general trends of the labor market.

The EY People Advisory Services Practice provides consulting services in personnel management, conducts researches on an employer’s external image, on employee engagement, corporate culture, values, motivational factors, etc.

About EY

EY is a global leader in assurance, tax, transaction and advisory services. The insights and quality services we deliver help build trust and confidence in the capital markets and in economies the world over. We develop outstanding leaders who team to deliver on our promises to all of our stakeholders. In so doing, we play a critical role in building a better working world for our people, for our clients and for our communities.

EY refers to the global organization, and may refer to one or more, of the member firms of Ernst & Young Global Limited, each of which is a separate legal entity. Ernst & Young Global Limited, a UK company limited by guarantee, does not provide services to clients. For more information about our organization, please visit ey.com.


Nataliya Letik

Senior Marketing Specialist, EY Ukraine

+380 (44) 499 3364


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