As new generations enter the workforce, they bring with them new preferences that differ from their predecessors. Your company must adapt to these evolving priorities in order to attract and retain new employees who will bring fresh insights and help move your company forward.
Up to four generations can work in one company, which means that there is a set of expectations that a company must meet in order to target each generation’s set of work priorities. It’s important not to get trapped in old methods and keep up with the times to keep bringing in new talent.
The youngest generation in the current workforce is Gen Z, who are looking for completely different benefits in both their workplace and job role than those who came before them.
Full service marketing agency Moburst explains all the details about Generation Z and their expectations in the workplace.
Generation Z people were born between 1997 and 2012 and are sometimes called Zoomers. This generation grew up with the internet and smartphones, and are therefore the most technological and visual generation yet.
They are well and truly immersed in the digital world – this makes them digital natives. They will look for information in search engines rather than books, and they are pioneering revolutionary changes in social, environmental and global issues more than the generations before them.
Generation Z makes up more than a third of the world’s population, so you need them. They are also a very entrepreneurial generation, so they bring a lot of value with them.
What is most important to Generation Z in the workplace?
As mentioned above, Gen Z has a whole host of different preferences than other generations when it comes to their jobs. Let’s see what their priorities are:
1. Owning your career
This generation expects to be promoted quickly, to understand and take control of their careers, and to see their careers as part of the bigger picture. Financial security is a big driver for them given the increased cost of living they face compared to previous generations.
2. Training and growth
One of the most important things for this generation is that it feels like it’s constantly evolving. This should not only be in a professional way, but also in soft skills and everyday life skills.
It’s common among Gen Z to feel unprepared for work, especially when it comes to leadership positions, so it’s vital that they feel your company will help equip them with the skills they need.
Flexibility is key – Zoomers place flexibility as a high priority, whether in relation to working hours or the overall working model. They need to feel like they have options and can choose the one that suits them best.
Many Gen Zers would consider leaving employers that do not prioritize a flexible work environment.
4. Passion for work
Gen Z must feel passionate about their workplace and position. They actually ranked lack of passion as the third biggest reason for leaving a job, meaning you’re likely to lose them if they’re not passionate about your company and their position.
Being technologically advanced is something Generation Z’ will be looking for in a company. Incorporating digital technology into the way you work will be a much more attractive prospect for Gen Z, e.g. using online task management and internal communication platforms.
Moreover, these digital systems can increase the level of productivity in your company due to the benefits of communication, automation, efficiency (and more) that they bring with them.
6. Alignment of values
It is extremely important to Gen Z to work for a company that reflects their values. This can be in the general mission statement of the company or in the way the company acts in accordance with its social responsibility.
They may question whether there are charitable initiatives or whether the company is truly following through on its public promises.
A huge priority for Gen Z is diversity and inclusion in the workplace. They will be looking for companies that show they really care about diversity – actions speak louder than words. After all, Generation Z has become the most diverse generation in the history of the United States in 2020.
How can you attract Gen Z employees?
Gen Z’er bring with them a whole range of benefits as an employee of the company. Their tech-savvy and digital-first approach to life is crucial in the digital age. Generation Z grew up with the internet and apps instead of coming to them later in life, and it shows in their approach to work, life and creativity.
It’s always helpful to have Gen Z insight into your company to help steer you in the right direction for the future—after all, they are the future.
1. Be transparent
Try to be as transparent as possible about their position and potential future with the company (in a way that works for both parties, of course).
2. Offer training
Create an organizational training plan with management training, professional courses and soft skills training to help them grow and become better employees. This benefits both them and your company.
Mentoring programs will also be an attractive prospect for Gen Z, who like more constant feedback than previous generations. This may stem from the fact that they grew up in a digital-first social media environment, where feedback and gratification are almost instantaneous.
They are used for instant access to food, TV, messages, social media likes and more.
Remember to ensure that everyone applying for a job at your company is informed of these opportunities from the start.
3. Be flexible
Give them options, whether it’s a telecommuting policy or flexible working hours. As mentioned above, flexibility is really the key to attracting Gen Z. This will be a significant factor for them when considering your job offer. Work-life balance is important to Gen Z, so you need to support it too.
4. Highlight your value
What’s in it for them? Show Gen Z’s the value of your company and their position within it. Once they’re in – that’s your profit.
You can show Gen Z how your mission aligns with their values, what financial rewards they can receive at your company, what promotions may be in their future, and more.
5. Digital first
So far, we’ve established that Gen Z are tech-savvy at their core, and one of the vital ways to attract (and keep) them is to ensure your company is digital-first in all areas of work. This applies to its external offerings, internal communications and everything in between.
Embrace new technologies as they hit the scene to keep up with the ever-evolving tech industry and stay ahead of the curve.
6. Build a strong social media presence
It’s important to remember that Gen Z is the most social media savvy generation to enter the workforce so far, so to attract them you need to build and maintain a creative and relevant presence on social networks which highlights the benefits of working for your company. This should go beyond the job itself and more into the company culture.
With Gen Z spending so much time online, it makes sense to find them where they already hang out, right? Make sure the content you post is engaging and highly relevant, drawing on your mission, diversity, training opportunities, timely industry-specific conversations, and any other features that can attract a Gen Z audience.
7. Make diversity a priority
It’s not good enough to make diversity your company’s surface-level value; it must be a deep priority. Many companies now employ diversity and inclusion officers to build the necessary processes into a company infrastructure that places diversity and inclusion at its core.
Zoomers want personalized communication and a sense of deep connection with the place and position they occupy.
After all, don’t we all?