Five Key Takeaways from the Talent Wars 2023 Report

June 14, 2023

Relocation has become a prominent topic in the post-pandemic era we live in, with talent seeking new opportunities in virtually every aspect of their life.

The Talent Wars 2023 report, now in its seventh edition, was released this week to provide insight into the challenges, trends and overall future of talent attraction. As we brace for new obstacles, including a mass exodus of workers and unprecedented tech layoffs, understanding factors that trigger relocation is more crucial than ever.

“Talent Wars: What People Look for in Jobs and Locations” surveys 1,000 working-age people across the U.S. (ages 21-65) who moved to a new location at least 100 miles away from their previous residence in the last three years. While similar themes to past reports appear in this new edition, the shifting talent landscape is shedding light on some looming changes.

See the five key takeaways from the report and download the full copy

1. Practical Factors Win Out Over “Nice to Haves”  
When it comes to making a relocation decision, talent continues to prioritize practical factors over “nice to haves.” They want lower costs of living, higher safety and security and more housing options. The ability to live, work and play without a long commute is also highly valued. If communities want to attract talent, it is essential for them to demonstrate the ways in which they compete favorably on these key factors and to make that information readily available to information-seekers.

2. Job Opportunities Drive Relocation Post-Pandemic
After a temporary slowdown during the pandemic, accepting a job that requires relocation has once again become a significant trigger for talent to move. The percentage of respondents accepting such jobs rose from 21% in 2021 and 2022 to 26% in 2023. While salary remains a critical factor, work-life balance and the presence of additional jobs and advancement opportunities are increasingly important. Communities must demonstrate the breadth and depth of available jobs to instill confidence in talent about their career prospects and livelihood in the new location.

3. The Year of the Great Reimagination
Talent is becoming increasingly interested in advancing their skillsets and exploring new career paths. Nearly 90% of respondents expressed willingness to undergo additional training or education to facilitate career shifts and 76% of respondents were open to a relocation if free training was offered. This illustrates the importance of creating (and actively promoting) opportunities and incentives for talent to pursue skill development.

4. The Internet is a Primary Source for Relocation
The internet has become more influential in talent’s location search than ever before. While firsthand experience still holds weight, internet research has taken the lead. Talent seeks dedicated websites providing comprehensive information about living and working in a particular area. Building a strong digital presence is now an essential first step in any talent attraction marketing campaign.

5. Tech Workers and Relocation Opportunities
In light of the recent tech layoffs, tech workers are more likely to consider relocating. In the most recent study, 65% of tech workers stated that the layoffs increased their likelihood of moving out of their current state. Communities with tech or tech-adjacent employment opportunities have an excellent opportunity to attract skilled professionals seeking career stability.

These key takeaways are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to this year’s Talent Wars 2023 report. Understanding talent relocation trends has become a lifeline for many businesses and communities navigating this post-pandemic world, and this research takes a deep dive into what we can expect from talent attraction in the coming year. By understanding and addressing these trends, we can work to adapt to changing workforce dynamics and provide the necessary resources and information that meet talent’s evolving needs.

Get your copy of the Talent Wars 2023 report here, and visit our Talent Attraction Marketing services page to see DCI’s proven results and case studies. For additional questions, contact Patience Fairbrother at @[email protected].

Written by

Patience Fairbrother

Vice President, Talent Attraction