12 Key Expectations of Gen Z Employees That Must be Addressed
In the ever-evolving landscape of the modern workforce, each generation brings its own distinct perspectives and aspirations. Addressing the expectations of Gen Z employees and understanding their mindset is key for employers looking to harness the incredible potential of this enthusiastic generation.
While the line between Millennials and Gen Z'ers may appear thin, Gen Z strides ahead with a demand for rapid technological adaptation. Their creative perspective, hunger for knowledge, and thirst for challenges make them stand out from the rest.
Understanding Gen Z's expectations and aspirations is crucial for employers looking to attract and retain top talents from this cohort. Companies that fail to align their culture and policies with this generation may struggle to realize their full potential.
In this blog, we will talk about the expectations of Gen Z in the workplace. By gaining insights into the mindset of this generation, you can adapt and cater to this emerging workforce.
- Who are Gen Z'ers or Generation Z?
- Key Expectations of Gen Z Employees in the Workplace
- How to Implement Rewards and Recognition Program for Gen Z
- Learning to Prioritize Mental Health and Well-being of Gen Z Employees
- Why does Gen Z Prioritize Workplace Transparency and Real-time Feedback
- Understanding Why Gen Z Value Open Communication and Teamwork
Who are these Gen Z'ers?
Generation Z, or Gen Z or iGeneration, refers to individuals born between 1997 and 2012. As the first generation to grow up in the lap of technological advancements, they are often referred to as iGens due to their familiarity with the digital realm.
Many people put the Millennials and Gen Z'ers in the same category because of the skinny layer of differences between them. However, the latter is more demanding and far ahead when it comes to adopting new technology.
Having an inclusive mindset that is willing to learn new things and the constant search for challenges makes Gen Z more unique and impressive. For this reason, they have higher expectations compared to the former generations, especially when it comes to their career.
Key Expectations of Gen Z Employees that Must be Addressed
1. Work-life Balance and Flexibility at Work
According to SHRM, 55% of employees cited work-life balance and flexibility as important aspects of their job satisfaction.
Gen Z values their personal lives as much as their professional lives because they've grown up in an era of constant connectivity and change. They've witnessed the impact of technology blurring the lines between work and personal life.
In order to help them pursue a work-life balance, you, as an employer, can implement a hybrid work culture in the organization to balance personal and professional commitments.
Additionally, you can set up nap rooms, quiet spaces, and recreation areas to give Gen Z employees moments to recharge during the workday.
2. Feedback Culture in the Workplace
According to a statistic, 59% of Generation Z respondents want feedback several times a week.
Unlike previous generations, Gen Z employees expect more than just a paycheck; they prioritize transparency in the workplace when considering job opportunities.
As digital natives, Gen Z employees are accustomed to receiving real-time feedback and want timely input on their performance to stay on track.
As an employer, you can offer a platform where Gen Z can make their voices heard. For this, you can implement employee pulse survey that measure employee engagement levels and provide instant, real-time employee feedback.
Source: Vantage Pulse
3. Recognition and Appreciation
People work for money but go the extra mile for Recognition, Praise, and Rewards. -Dale Carnegie
In today's dynamic work landscape, recognition and appreciation hold immense significance for Gen Z employees. They want to be recognized and feel valued for their efforts and contributions.
As an employer, you can make them feel recognized and appreciated with a robust Rewards and Recognition program. It could cover the needs of the Gen Z workforce with flexible monetary and non-monetary rewards.
Personalized Peer-to-peer recognition also goes a long way in making Gen Z employees feel valued. Recognizing their efforts through public shout-outs, private messages, or tangible rewards motivates them to do better at their job.
Source: Vantage Circle
4. Diversity & Inclusion
According to a recent study by Monster, 83% of Gen Z candidates said that a company’s commitment to diversity and inclusion is important when choosing an employer.
Generation Z is one of the most diverse generations yet. As a result, they want their employers to place high value on diversity and representation in the workplace.
They expect organizations to embrace inclusivity and offer equal opportunities for all individuals. Companies prioritizing Diversity, Equity, and inclusion (DEI) in the workplace are more likely to resonate with this generation.
But how can employers prioritize DEI efforts? By focusing on implementing DEI Audits. It is a structured process where a company examines various aspects of its organization to assess how well it promotes diversity, equity, and inclusion.
Employers that demonstrate a commitment to DEI and LGBTQ+ rights are more likely to meet the expectations of Gen Z employees.
When employees feel accepted and supported, they are more engaged and productive, contributing positively to the company's success.
5. Mental Health and Well-being
In today’s fast-paced and demanding work environment, one significant aspect that Gen Z employees highly value is their overall holistic well-being. Moreover, Gen Z is known for its openness regarding mental health and wellness.
They appreciate workplaces that provide resources and assistance when needed. You can elevate your commitment by offering access to Employee Assistance Programs (EAP) and counseling services.
Just like having a stress-free mind helps one to think clearly, good physical health helps one to stay energetic.
The easiest way to incorporate healthy lifestyles in Gen Z employees is by introducing them to effective wellness programs such as yoga or meditation sessions. This will help them in managing stress and enhance their mental well-being.
You can further encourage Gen Z to stay active with the help of corporate wellness apps like Vantage Fit, which organizes various fitness challenges. It engages your employees with weekly step challenges, walkathons, and health campaigns to build healthy habits.
6. Scope of Learning & Development
According to LinkedIn’s latest Workforce Confidence survey, 76% of Gen Z Employees want more opportunities to learn and practice new skills.
Gen Z are avid learners who value personal and professional growth. Since this generation witnessed rapid technological advancements, they are always eager to acquire new skills.
They view their job not only as a means of income but also as an opportunity to learn and grow.
Gen Z actively seeks employers who prioritize learning and development opportunities. To align with their expectations, you can provide them avenues for growth, such as offering access to online courses, workshops, or certification programs relevant to their roles.
Furthermore, you can go the extra mile to encourage participation by providing them with stipends for certification courses.
7. Career Growth
Along with developing their skills, Gen Z employees are eager to make an impact and progress in their careers quickly.
The generation is known for its ambition and goal-oriented nature. Gen Z places great importance on having a well-defined path for career growth within an organization.
You can meet their expectations for career growth by taking the following proactive steps:
You can assist them in creating detailed career progression maps for different roles within the organization. The maps could outline various stages of advancement and the skills or qualifications required for each stage.
You can establish regular one-on-one meetings to ensure that Gen Z employees stay on track with their career goals. During these meetings, you could discuss individual career aspirations and development plans.
You can further place Gen Z employees in the right roles by evaluating their unique strengths and interests. With this the organization can harness their full potential and encourage long-term career growth.
8. Technology Integration
According to a Research, 80% of Gen-Z aspire to work with cutting-edge technology. Regarding choosing employment, 91% say technology integration would influence their job choice.
Gen Z employees grew up in a tech-savvy world, making technology an integral part of their lives. For them, integrating technology in the workplace is crucial because it helps them stay competitive and up-to-date with the latest trends.
However, they are so reliant on technology that they often find it challenging to cope with a work environment that operates using traditional methods instead of automation. That is why, after joining an organization, they consistently seek access to the latest tools and technologies in the workplace.
As an employer, you can meet the expectations of Gen Z and utilize their full potential by embracing modern technology trends and creating a work environment that supports it.
Furthermore, you can implement AI-driven tools that assist employees in making data-informed decisions. For instance, utilize data analytics platforms that help Gen Z employees analyze market trends and customer behaviour to drive business strategies.
9. Purpose Driven Work
According to LinkedIn survey, 80% of Gen Z employees want a purpose-driven job that better aligns with their values.
Gen Z is known for being a socially conscious and value-driven generation. They want to work for organizations that share their personal beliefs and principles.
Gen Z employees expect their organizations to have a clear and inspiring mission that goes beyond profit. They want to know that their work contributes to a greater societal or environmental good.
For instance, they favor organizations focused on social and environmental concerns such as gender equality, domestic violence, social discrimination, and effective waste management to combat climate change.
In order to fulfill this aspiration, you can organize volunteer programs, charity events, or community service activities to engage Gen Z employees in purpose-driven efforts.
Furthermore, organizations can take proactive steps to reduce their environmental footprint. Embracing green building practices and sustainable office designs can align with Gen Z's environmental expectations.
10. Competitive Compensation
According to a report, 70% of Gen Zers put pay/salary as a top aspect they want from their next job.
Unlike previous generations, Gen Z aspires to achieve financial milestones relatively early in their careers. They expect their salaries to be competitive with industry standards and market rates.
Gen Z values transparency in compensation and seeks a clear understanding of how their salary is determined. It includes factors such as experience and performance.
When Gen Z employees receive a salary that reflects their skills and contributions, they feel valued and respected by their employers. Therefore, establishing a transparent salary structure is the way to attract and retain Gen Z employees.
Furthermore, you can implement a system of periodic salary reviews, such as annual evaluations, to ensure that employees' compensation is at par with their career progression.
11. Less Bureaucracy
It won't be wrong to define Gen Z'ers as individuals who think out of the box. They like to do things uniquely and creatively, providing a different perspective in the workplace.
Generation Z prefers when there's less hierarchy and fewer strict rules in place. They highly disregard any action aimed towards controlling their thoughts.
Therefore, employers can adopt an Adhocracy culture, where decision-making authority is decentralized to meet their expectations. You can encourage them to make decisions based on their expertise and knowledge.
Instead of putting too many rules on Gen Z workers, make them feel comfortable approaching you if they have any questions, concerns, or ideas. It's also a good idea to have an open-door policy to help you understand their thoughts and feelings.
Recommended Resource: Employee Engagement: Creating A Engaging Work Culture
12. Collaborative Environment
According to a Stanford study, Gen Z, or postmillennial – is a highly collaborative cohort that cares deeply about others.
Gen Z employees strongly prefer working in teams and collaborative settings. They value diversity and inclusion and see teamwork as a means to drive organizational innovation.
Companies that actively promote open communication and collaboration are highly appealing to them. To foster a more collaborative work environment that aligns with their expectations, consider implementing engaging team-building activities like scavenger hunts, office trivia, and team lunches.
You can also work towards encouraging open communication where team members feel comfortable sharing feedback, concerns, and ideas with each other.
Generation Z is the future of the workforce, capable of taking things into their own hands and bringing innovation.
This talented cohort of young professionals holds distinct expectations that differ from previous generations regarding their careers. By gaining insight into Gen Z's desires, employers can take steps to create an engaging workplace tailored to this emerging demographic.
As the workforce continues to evolve, addressing the needs and expectations of Generation Z is a strategic investment that can drive innovation and growth in any organization.
You can benefit greatly by recruiting these self-motivated young talents who are always eager to take up challenges. So, it is upto you now to make Gen Z'ers an integral part of the organization and move upward in the future.