Employees increasingly want to work for firms with a clear sense of purpose

In the face of climate change, social justice movements, and recession, employees are seeking alternative commitments from employers. A new poll from Sparta Global claims that for job seekers in 2024, a company’s contributions to environmental sustainability, poverty alleviation, and community well-being are of growing importance.

For 61 percent of employees, the social purpose of their organisation contributed to them accepting their current role, while 45 percent of people who consider the social value of a business remained working there for more than five years.

Young people today want meaningful careers that align with their passions and encourage innovation. 72 percent of those who prioritise the social purpose of their employer are in the 18 – 35-year-old age group.

“Social impact and socially responsible business is about tangible, positive changes made by organisations in response to societal issues,” says Sparta Global CEO, David Rai. “Morally, businesses must want to do best by their people – employees, immediate community, and wider society. But genuine socially responsible businesses go beyond profit to prioritise ethical practices, transparent governance, and community engagement.”

Representation and opportunity for diverse communities is a critical part of being a social impact business. Yet only 54 percent of the companies surveyed currently invest in dedicated strategies to attract talent from minority backgrounds, and just 35 percent of the companies analysed have internal teams responsible for promoting and measuring social impact for those already employed. Research even found just 35 percent of boards have members from minority socio-economic backgrounds.

The report also touches on tokenism – a superficial endeavour to appear diverse without creating a genuinely inclusive environment. Around half (46 percent) of the employees surveyed believe that their business brands are authentically purpose-driven. In addition, 31 percent of respondents did not know what their core company values were and how they relate to social value.

In addition to delivering key insights across neurodiversity and technology, the Equal Tech Report also features contributions from Inflexion, Ampersand Partners, Boldr, and Jack Parsons – the UK’s Chief Youth Officer.