Values over dollars: Young BC workers prefer socially responsible companies: survey

As many young people across the province struggle to make ends meet, it seems many BC workers would take a pay cut if it meant they could work for a socially and environmentally responsible company.

New research from BCAA, among members of the Angus Reid forum, suggests that about half (49%) of millennial and Gen Z workers, between the ages of 18 and 34, would settle for less money and they’d work even harder for companies who embody the traits they are looking for.

“We’re noticing that many younger British Columbians are redefining what’s important about work. They look beyond a job description and have high expectations about the values and actions of their potential employer,” says Shawn Pettipas, BCAA’s director of corporate purpose, who adds when BCAA hires, Gen Zs are often the most purpose-minded candidates.

Young workers are doing their research

These days, it seems a lot of workers aren’t just sending out countless resumes when looking for a role, but are instead really delving into certain companies to see if their corporate values align with their own.

“We hire for a wide variety of roles, and social and environmental responsibility comes up in pretty much every interview. They’ve read our Impact Report and they ask how they’ll contribute to purpose and make a difference. They want to make sure it’s a fit for their values and as a values-driven organization that’s important to us too,” states Pettitpas.

He adds accountability is important for folks identifying as Gen Z, saying it’s more than just investing in the community. The survey shows about two-thirds of those who responded said they want to work for companies that put corporate purpose at the centre of how they operate.

Money is still a major worry among Canadians of all ages

Despite many young Canadians saying they would settle for less money at a socially responsible company, recent research from Leger360 found almost half of Canadians (46%) say they live paycheque to paycheque.

leger money job


The January research also delved into how many people are worried about their job status, with just over one-third saying they were concerned.

Would you take a pay cut to work for a socially or environmentally responsible firm? Let us know in the comments.