What do young workers want from their workplaces?

What do young workers want from their workplaces?


Millennials and Gen Z are a growing portion of the Australian workforce. By 2025, experts estimate that they will account for 75% of the nation’s workers. These young people bring in new perspectives, new skills and — crucially — new expectations.

According to Haworth, this members of this cohort “prefer organisations that value them enough to provide choice, flexibility and opportunities for learning, growth and career progression.” With  almost 90% of Australian millennials reporting that they would remain with an employer that offered training, this will be a crucial consideration for organisations in the future.

However, that’s only one crucial piece of the puzzle when it comes to attracting the young talent that could be the lifeblood of your company for years to come — and certainly the same is true when it comes to retaining those employees. Read on to learn more about what Gen Z and millennials want from you as an employer:

Is your company doing enough to appeal to young workers?Is your company doing enough to appeal to young workers?

1) The freedom to explore possibilities

It certainly used to be the case that workers preferred to get into a lane in their careers, and stick with it for as long as was feasible. However, that Haworth study found the opposite is true of younger professionals today: They want to be able to get many different kinds of experience within their chosen industry (and, in some cases, beyond it).

What that means for you as an employer is simple: You don’t want to pigeonhole anyone, and instead should give employees the ability to explore a number of different aspects of your business or industry.

2) Emotional intelligence

The past year has been tough on everyone, and that may be especially true for younger people who are only just beginning to be established in their careers, or even looking for their first “real world” job. Consequently, according to Harvard Business Review, companies need to empower younger people to find that just-right balance between their personal and professional lives, and learn how to handle the ups and downs of the latter more effectively.

Emotional intelligence at both the individual and organisational levels will be a must for helping Gen Z and millennial employees feel fully supported. That includes better communication about expectations, and mentorship may go a long way on this front.

3) Better pay and benefits

As with many other things in business, having a workplace culture that’s fully supportive of (and appealing to) younger workers often boils down to the Almighty Dollar. Voices of Youth noted that the youngest workers have faced more financial difficulties in their adult lives than previous generations — and when adjusted for inflation, they make far less than their parents did at the same age.

As such, your company may need to do more to ensure the salary and perks you offer your employees goes above and beyond what they may be able to get elsewhere. This can help them not only be more inclined to come aboard initially, but also to develop a mutual loyalty that lasts for years to come.

With all of the above in mind, it’s important that your perks include providing professional skills development for all employees, such as the many course offerings from ICML. Everything from communication skills to leadership training and more can be tailored to your unique organisational needs. Get in touch with us today to learn more.

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