New normal: What candidates are looking for in new roles

by Diane DeRosa-Fedor

“New normal” is a phrase encompassing the weird world of working from home, working a combination schedule of in-person and remote and all the other COVID-era innovations that have kept life moving forward in unprecedented times.

In the second half of 2021, 75% of the roles Charles Aris’s Corporate Development practice sought to fill were fully remote. Of the remaining non-remote 25%, half of those roles saw at least one offer turndown. But with offer acceptance ramping up in 2022, we spoke with a few of our close contacts to curate three must haves for clients in today’s talent market.

  • Flexibility: Candidates are looking for the opportunity to work from home when needed and to visit the office when needed. While a good work-from-home setup is essential, the ability to meet with colleagues in a safe, in-person environment is also important. As Covid rates fluctuate and vaccines are readily available, more candidates have expressed their desire for hybrid schedules.
  • Interaction: Candidates frequently say they miss the “office banter” and interaction of an in-person workplace. Whether employees are working remote, in-person or enjoy a hybrid schedule, the ability to interact with colleagues is a huge bonus for candidates seeking new roles. Organizations that lean heavy on collaboration can alleviate the isolation that comes with flexibility.
  • Understanding: Remote work often challenges typical workplace schedules by muddying the waters between work and home. But candidates claim to benefit from work cultures that let them set their own schedules, within reason. If something comes up and work must be molded into other parts of the day, it’s become increasingly important for organizations to foster a culture of understanding.


With these three pillars in mind, the main question from our clients is “where do we go from here?” While it’s not feasible for every organization to employ hybrid schedules, we’ve found that candidates are most interested in roles that permit the freedom to choose between different work styles. No matter what happens in this era of uncertainty, this change in thinking appears to be here to stay.