Companies making a positive impact are more attractive to the UK workforce

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New research by UK pharmaceutical company, MSD, has revealed that when it comes to work, money is not everything. In an online survey of 2,000 people aged over 18, three quarters (74%) of young workers (18-34) and 66% of over 35-year-olds would be happier working for a company with a positive impact and purpose in the world. Younger workers go even further with over two-fifths (42%) saying they would take a pay cut if it meant they could work for a company that had a positive impact and purpose in the world, with 23% of over 35-year-olds in agreement.

MSD wanted to look at what motivates people when looking for work – MSD plans to establish a new research hub in London with the aim of attracting and recruiting approx. 150 of the brightest and best research scientists to work in London.

The findings also suggest that employees who identify with the overall purpose of a company are more likely to be productive. Two-thirds (69%) of 18 to 34-year-olds say they would be more productive when working for a company that has a positive impact in the world, whilst more than half (56%) of over 35-year-olds also said the same.

Interestingly, when it comes to deciding whether to stay at a company, half of younger workers and 32 per cent of over 35-year-olds say they would be likely to leave if their organisation did not prioritise having a positive impact and purpose in the world.

Lorraine Kelly, HR director, MSD in the UK and Ireland said, “These findings show how attitudes to work are changing and how important it is for employees to feel that they and the company they work for make a difference. The success of any company is built upon highly motivated and passionate people. At MSD, our people are driven by the same desire: to save and improve the lives of patients. It’s this shared mutual goal that inspires our teams to come into work every day.”

“At MSD we also support our staff to help the communities around us. Whether it’s our £400,000 MSD for Mothers’ programme – improving the health and well-being of mothers during pregnancy and childbirth – or the 40 hours of volunteering that our employees are given every year. These programmes help inspire our people to continue the work they’re doing to help people around us.”

“These results present a unique opportunity for businesses and how they recruit and retain talent. Employees say working for companies that have a positive impact in the world makes them more productive and happier in the workplace.”

Sarah Valente-Smith, a key account manager at MSD and winner of 2018’s Pf Awards newcomer Award said: “When I graduated, it was really important for me that I felt good about the company I worked for so did a lot of research to make sure that I targeted those companies that gave something back. It was this wish to make a difference and being able to say that I work for a company that helps make patients’ lives better is what makes me come to work every day.”