With such rapid growth comes fierce competition for highly skilled talent. Although economic opportunities make these cities appear attractive financially, economic growth alone cannot guarantee they will be able to attract — and keep — ambitious, mobile and driven workers. What must employers, both in the public and private sector, therefore, do to attract the best people and motivate them to stay?
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While most city studies rely upon secondary research or academic papers analysing economic data and investments, technological advancements, and movement to smart cities, this study examined employer and worker views in growth cities to discover meaningful gaps and points of tension, and to identify practical solutions for employers to effectively compete for talent.
Fifteen current and future megacities were shortlisted based upon their strong projected GDP and population growth for the next decade. As part of the study, employers and workers were asked to rank 20 decision-making factors by importance against four vital and interrelated pillars — human, health, money and work.
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- Box 1: Push and pull factors in choosing a residential location.
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- This is why people live, work and stay in a growing city.
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Meaningful gaps were discovered between what workers value and what employers believe is important to people when deciding whether to move to, stay or leave a city. The research suggests that what matters most to workers depends on the decision the individual is trying to make. When deciding in which city to live and work, people rank human factors as the most important. They rate life satisfaction as two times more important than employers realize.
Figure 1: The main reasons why respondents chose to live in their neighbourhood by age
This is their number one consideration, followed by safety and security and proximity to family and friends in fourth. Third on their list is pay and bonuses — often a proxy for quality of life. Employers place twice as much weight on career and job opportunities twice as workers do. However, when deciding on a neighborhood, people place equal importance on all four pillars and care about proximity to supermarkets, banks, public transportation, schools and healthcare.
This results in a segmentation study of five personas — confident achievers, white-collar professionals and graduates, struggling vocationals, business owners and skilled tradespeople, and professional families. While overall satisfaction with life ranks as the number one, most important factor across all five personas, each persona has a unique set of needs and drivers.
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A Table where Little People Live teamLab, , Interactive Digital Installation In this installation, little people run across the interactive screen of a tabletop around which children sit or stand. Children are encouraged to interact with the little people by placing objects on the table. As each new object is introduced, the movements of the little people change; they interact with the objects by jumping, climbing, and sliding onto them.
Background of Artwork The Three Laws of Mechanics The movement of things in this world can be explained based upon three laws. Pearly Siffel , Strategy and geographic expansion leader, international, Mercer. The views expressed in this article are those of the author alone and not the World Economic Forum. I accept. Global Agenda Cities and Urbanization Workforce and Employment Education and Skills This is why people live, work and stay in a growing city In the next decade, nearly half of all global GDP growth will come from around cities.
Pearly Siffel Strategy and geographic expansion leader, international, Mercer.
Five countries where people live the longest
Predictions for What if we get things right? Read the series. Most Popular. These photos show some of the world's smallest things massively magnified Sean Fleming 06 Nov More on the agenda. Forum in focus.
Read more about this project. Explore context. Explore the latest strategic trends, research and analysis. Have you read? The 5 biggest challenges cities will face in the future Why every resident of US cities should live within 10 minutes of a park These companies are helping employees get on the property ladder.