As the global talent shortage persists and new jobs are created as fast as others become extinct, business success depends on organisations having an effective career development strategy in place to attract, engage and retain high performing individuals.
Learning has never been more important as the world embraces technology and we become connected through the power of the internet and social media.
We have seen the need for job roles to morph since the Global Financial Crisis in order for organisations to remain competitive and technological disruption of industries is accelerating this need. The concept of a “job for life “is rapidly becoming obsolete and the one generation who seem un-fased by this concept are millennials. What do they have that the rest of the workforce don’t and how do we, as employers, appeal to this generation to attract and retain them,given they will make up around 30% of the global workforce by 2020?
In the last war for talent, employment branding became a key differentiator and spoke to the drivers of the workforce at the time. McKinsey & Company suggest there is a new war for talent, where data analytics will play a large part in how talent evaluation and management strategies are set.
In the Deloitte 2018 Millennial Survey we have the answers to what organisations need to do to attract and retain this demographic:
- Perceptions of business have reversed. millennials’ opinions about the motivations and ethics of the business sector, which had trended up the past two years, took a sharp turn downward. A stark mismatch persists between what millennials believe responsible companies should achieve and what they perceive businesses’ actual priorities are.
- Diversity and flexibility are key to loyalty. Good pay and positive corporate cultures are most likely to attract both millennials and gen z, but the key to keeping these two groups happy are in fact diversity, inclusion, and flexibility. Unfortunately, survey respondents believed that most business leaders, rhetoric notwithstanding, are not truly committed to creating inclusive cultures at the workplace. Many respondents, especially in emerging markets, view the gig economy as an attractive alternative or adjunct to their jobs.
- Young workers feel unprepared for Industry 4.0. According to the survey, millennials expressed admiration for businesses that are adapting to and advancing Industry 4.0. Moreover, young workers are looking to businesses to help them develop the necessary skills, including the “soft” skills they believe will be more important as jobs evolve.
While young workers believe that businessess hould consider stakeholder interests as well as profits, their experience is of employers prioritising the bottom line above workers, society, and the environment.
These attitudes can have a direct impact on an employer’s future—and the company’s bottom line. As seen in previous surveys, companies and senior management teams that are most aligned with millennials in terms of purpose, culture, and professional development are likely to attract and retain the best young talent and, in turn, potentially achieve better financial performance. Loyalty must be earned, and the vast majority of millennials are prepared to move, and move quickly, for a better workplace experience.
Millennials are “pro-business”—they simply expect more from their leaders and corporations. They are eager for businesses to commit to making a tangible impact on the society while preparing their organisations and employees for the changes that Industry 4.0 is bringing.
We see an opportunity for leaders to fill what younger workers regard as a stark leadership void in the areas of education, skills and training, economic stability, and cyber-security. Younger workers are open to being convinced that employers are committed to ethics, diversity, and Industry 4.0 training, but they’re not yet convinced. The timing is ideal for leaders to step up and take actions that benefit all of their stakeholders.
Millennials entered the workforce expecting and wanting to have a say and be involved in how the businesses operate. Continuous Involvement Systems, where their opinions and ideas are sought, will become an important mechanism to communicate how the organisation is delivering on the aspects of work younger workers deem important(highlighting corporate social responsibility initiatives and progress) and to continuously evaluate and feed back on action plans geared to the issues they hold dear.
Involving millennials and canvassing their input will become increasingly powerful in retaining and attracting this younger generation. The research indicates this may well become a differentiator for employers wanting to attract and retain key talent,just as employment branding was in the initial War for Talent.
Employability depends less on what you already know and more on the ability to learn, apply and adapt and let’s face it, millennials demonstrate that ability hands down.
For more leadership thinking and insights, visit our resource hub, follow us on Twitter and connect on LinkedIn.