Mars Wrigley Australia has announced that it will give prospective employees the option to bring their loved ones into the interview process to ensure the company is the right fit for them.

The change comes as Australia enters the ‘Great Realignment’, in which employees re-evaluate priorities of life and work post-pandemic.

This shift is supported in a national survey by the snacks and treats manufacturer, which revealed almost half of Australians (47 per cent) have declined a job offer, moved roles, or left a job because it didn’t complement their family life and dynamic.

The sentiment of Australians and the company’s own family values played a significant role in why Mars Wrigley Australia has added the step to its HR practices.

In a survey of 1,000 working Australians, Mars Wrigley found that 74 per cent say they rely on their partner/spouse’s opinion when deciding to move jobs. When asked to list their considerations when looking for a new role, Aussies listed flexibility and workplace balance (77 per cent) and location (57 per cent) as most important.

As a family owned and operated business, Mars Wrigley knows that what ‘family’ looks like is different to everyone – including extended family, life partners, children, friends, sporting clubs, and even pets.

However, it’s this family that enables its people to bring their whole authentic self to work and creates a greater a sense of belonging.

The ‘Loved One Interview’ will be rolled out via a virtual interview – where candidates will be asked whether they or their loved ones have any questions for the company to help support the flexibility they need to enjoy what is important to them. The information provided will not impact the outcome of an application but is designed to ensure candidates feel confident that Mars Wrigley is the right fit for them.

Questions such as how the values of the company will allow candidates the flexibility to care for their loved one or pet when they are unwell, or if parents will be home for school pick-up time are encouraged.

The aim of the extra hiring step is also to highlight that ‘family values’ are important in every sense, rather than just for ‘traditional’ families.

Mars Wrigley’s P&O Director, Katy Halliwell said: “As a family-owned business, Mars Wrigley celebrates bringing your whole authentic self to work. Family looks different to each person, but the one thing that is common is that our Associates need flexibility for the things that matter most to them in their life. While we have long been offering our Associates flexibility and a supportive, family-friendly environment, we’ve realised that this equally is important to our prospective Associates, and as such a crucial step in the hiring process.

“We want to provide employment opportunities that are fulfilling, yet flexible and aligned with the personal lives of each of our Associates – by opening up the interview process to loved ones we’re ensuring candidates have all the information they need when embarking on the next chapter of their career and life.”

The survey also unveiled a strong shift in the way Australians feel about work and career in 2022. The majority of respondents admitted their view on the importance of family (63 per cent) and work (62 per cent) has changed as a result of the pandemic.

Furthermore, majority of Australians (63 per cent) admit to feeling guilty about their time spent at work away from their family and half (51 per cent) of us admit to missing an important family event due to work.

Key barriers to moving for a role include the effect on the family unit (66 per cent), distance from extended family and friends (51 per cent) and impact it would have on their social life (29 per cent).

The survey also went on to reveal that almost half of Australians (49 per cent) are currently looking for a new job or have recently shifted into a new position in the last 12 months. This figure increases to almost two-thirds (58 per cent) for the Millennial cohort.

As a major regional employer of almost 700 Associates, Mars Wrigley Australia works to attract talent to its roles through its commitment to lifelong career progression, formalised development plans, the ability to move between business units and markets, and industry competitive packages.

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