John Lewis perceived as the UK’s most attractive employer
Disconnect between what prospective employees want and what employers offer
Growing demand for flexible working arrangements, diversity & inclusion and giving back to society
1 in 4 gen z employees now seek employers who offer diversity & inclusion. 

New research from the world’s number one recruiter, Randstad, has unveiled John Lewis as the nation’s most attractive employer. Brands Credit Suisse and Jaguar Land Rover secured top five positions, with fellow retailer Marks & Spencer also featuring in the top ten. 

The survey of over 8,000 respondents, compromising of students, employed and unemployed aged 16 - 65, also found that John Lewis delivered cross-generational appeal. Age groups 18-24, 25-34 and 35-54 all ranked John Lewis number one. For those aged 55-64, the retailer still secured a top four position. 

top ten most attractive employers 

top 10 UK employers 2019
1 John Lewis (retail)
2 TI Automotive (automotive aerospace)
3 Credit Suisse (investment banking)
4 SSP Group (business services)
5 Jaguar Land Rover (automotive aerospace)
6 PwC (professional services)
7 BMW (automotive aerospace)
8 British Airways (automotive aerospace)
9 Marks & Spencer (retail)
10 Rolls-Royce Group (automotive aerospace)

Ruth Jacobs, Managing Director of Randstad Business Solutions, comments: “John Lewis is renowned for its quality, value and service and it’s even more reassuring to see a retail brand top the chart during economic flux. For candidates, it’s perceived as having a very good reputation, being financially healthy and offering a pleasant work atmosphere. Alongside Marks & Spencer, there’s still measurable brand value for retailers who have carefully balanced a high street footprint with an online offering.”  

disconnect between employees and employers 

Randstad’s Employer Brand Research identified a value proposition void between what individuals look for versus what employers are perceived to offer. Faced with extensive skills shortages, employers need to close the gap - specifically when it comes to attractive salary and benefits, work-life balance and pleasant work atmosphere.  

what potential employees want 

1 attractive salary & benefits
2 work-life balance
3 job security
4 pleasant work atmosphere
5 location
6 good training
7 flexible arrangements
8 career progression  
9 strong management
10 interesting job content 

what UK’s employers are perceived to offer
1 financially healthy 
2 uses latest technology 
3 job security
4 career progression 
5 very good reputations
6 attractive salary & benefits
7 pleasant work atmosphere
8 interesting job content 
9 work-life balance
10 gives back to society

trends and generational attitudes 

The UK report also unearths key trends. Firstly, that the importance of attractive salary & benefits is on a downwards slope, with flexible working arrangements, diversity & inclusion and giving back to society growing in perceived value over the past four years. Employers who want to win the war in talent also need to understand what motivates different generations of the population in order to secure a diverse workforce. 

Ruth Jacobs adds: “Employers who wish to future-proof their talent pipeline and retain existing talent need to be agile in responding to demands and trends. If you look at our entry level talent pool, 28% of 18-24 years olds seek out employers who offer diversity & inclusion and nearly 40% will leave if they have insufficient challenges. Whereas gen x are more likely to stay with an employer if they provide a good work-life balance, a factor deemed less important by younger generations.” 

To request a copy of Randstad’s Employer Brand Research please click here

Notes to editors

about Randstad’s employer brand research
The Randstad Employer Brand Research - or REBR -  measures the perceived attractiveness of a country’s largest companies and what potential candidates look for in a new employer. It pinpoint gaps and identify opportunities to allow companies to develop employer brand and talent strategies which ultimately will attract the most appealing candidates to an organisation. In 2019, the REBR has been conducted in 32 countries across the globe, surveying 6,162 companies via over 200,000 online respondents.