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Generation Z is redefining HR practices in 2017 and beyond
Generation Z – those born between the mid 90s and the mid-2000s are reaching working age, and they have something to say. As digital natives, they were born into a world of media saturation and infinite information, and they want the companies they interact with – whether it’s as an employee or a consumer – to have a mission and display authenticity.
With four generations now in the workforce, I’m seeing companies being pushed by its younger members to redefine their message, values and activities. Here are the ways in which Generation Z is pushing the HR agenda in 2017:
They want to be part of a mission
Salary is important to Generation Z, but it’s not all they’re looking for in a role. They want to be part of something meaningful – and this feeling will in turn gain their loyalty. A savvy group, they see loyalty as very much a two-way street: they won’t simply be grateful for a job if they aren’t also recognised within their organisation.
HR leaders should work at defining a great employee value proposition and communicating it throughout the business and in in the hiring process. I see Gen Z candidates thrive most as entry-level employees when they’re enthusiastic about what they’re achieving as part of a team.
They’re entrepreneurial networkers
Even more than millennials, Generation Z have been confronted with uncertainty, and in response are entrepreneurial and self-motivated. They also tend to be great networkers and as digital natives can navigate systems and data with ease.
When I speak to my clients, I typically recommend that a flatter management structure will appeal to these employees, who respond well to mutually respectful working arrangements that allow them to work independently.
They see through phony corporate messaging
If you want to appeal to the generation that will become at least half of the workforce by 2020, you need to make sure your corporate social responsibility activity isn’t half-hearted. Generation Z recognises marketing-speak and can tell when CSR is a box-ticking exercise – and they’ll let you know.
What your company stands for must be authentic and consistent, and that needs to be reflected from the top down if you want to attract and engage Generation Z.
They want flexibility and transparency
Brought up questioning the value of traditional working models, Gen Z is pushing the boundaries of the 9-5 system. They also want as much information about remuneration as possible. While it might seem as though this would backfire, a 2015 PayScale survey found that the more information employees have about why they earn, the less likely they are to leave.
To attract and engage this group, my clients are increasingly restructuring their systems to allow the flexible schedules and remote working capabilities that will be a necessity as this generation comes of age.
This is a generation of switched-on, savvy workers. To tap their full potential, it will be essential for HR leaders to instigate change in some of their more entrenched practices.
Want more intel on the newest generation in the workforce? Contact me to discuss how to attract Generation Z employees today.
By 2020, more than half of the workforce will be comprised of members of Generation Z. To appeal to this generation, employers need to:
- Strive for authenticity
- Incorporate workers in their mission
- Create respectful, flatter organisational structures
Attracting the strongest candidates from the youngest generations of workers could spell big success for your business in the near future.