Work for less? Most say yes

by HCA30 Jun 2009

The majority of job applicants to non-profit organisations are willing to take a significant pay cut - up to 30% - to secure jobs they see as ethical, according to a new survey.

EthicalJobs.com.au surveyed HR managers and executives 60 Australian non-profit organisations including charities, industry bodies and non-profit organisations.

Seventy-eight per cent of employers surveyed reported applications from people outside the not-profit-sector willing to work for less in an equivalent position.

Of those employers:

• 56% said applicants are willing to work for 10-20% less

• 19% said applicants are willing to work for 20-30% less

• 6% said applicants are willing to work for more than 30% less

"Many people want more than a paycheck and a parking spot - they want an 'ethical job' and non-profits seem to be the big winners," EthicalJobs.com.au founder Michael Cebon said.

"Increasingly people are willing to put things they believe in above money. And making the world a better place is as strong a motivation as you'll find. This is good news for the non-profit sector and for any employer offering meaningful jobs which are seen as ethical.

"This survey shows that people are willing to put their money where their mouth is. We know that increasing numbers of people are thinking long-term about the world around them and the part they can play in helping secure that future. But this survey proves that they're also increasingly willing to act on their concerns by taking a pay cut to make a difference."

The survey found overwhelming support for the notion of an 'ethical job', with 87% of employers surveyed saying job seekers were more likely to apply for a position seen to be ethical.

'Ethical jobs' are generally classified as jobs that make a positive contribution to the community or environment and range from CEO to on-the-ground positions in non-profit, government and corporate roles.  

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