In part one of this series, we looked at demographic megatrends – taking an in-depth look at employee retention challenges. As the baby boomers are retiring and the Millennials are stepping in, employers are finding ways to most effectively fill the skills gap inevitably left by the retiring workforce. At CloudForce HR, we’ve been working with forward-thinking clients and have identified some pointers that help with this transition.
Millenials dance to an independent tune
Whether aged 25 or 65, the single most important consideration in selecting the ideal candidate for a position is how well they match with your organization’s corporate culture.
Traditionally, employers have looked to match relevant skills, education and experience to their published job description. However, research has found that this alone is no determinant of a candidate’s success. More effort up-front during the selection process can potentially save your organization millions annually.
This is an issue we will continue to address throughout 2013, but truly understanding what the new generation values is vital. The brief example below should illustrate how, by rethinking compensation packages, your organization benefits from the HRM trifecta: Employee Loyalty, Cost Savings and Productivity.
“One client, a major Bangkok-based accounting firm that was in the midst of negotiating a compensation package with a candidate they were highly keen to bring on-board, found themselves unable to persuade her to join their organization. As it turns out, it was a single tiny ‘sticking point’ that was keeping her from joining their team. With family abroad, she felt strongly about having three weeks vacation a year, as opposed to the usual company policy of two weeks for new hires. After considering her needs, the accounting firm determined they could accommodate this and she has turned out to be one of their top-performers.”
When we take a broad look at the research, these are the top four ‘generational differences’ HRMs are encountering. In our experience however, these four can actually be distilled into one takeaway: Millenials want to be treated as individuals.
What can HRM do to address this?
The most cost and time effective measures are to listen closely to candidate and employee expectations and try to determine if and when they can realistically be accommodated. By meeting these expectations whenever possible you’ll go a long way towards employee satisfaction.
Though reluctant to do so, here we’re sharing our list of the most commonly heard ‘complaints’ about the Millenials. Looked at from another perspective though, good HRMs can leverage these attributes and they actually become positives. By really seeking to understand the reasons for these trends, many organizations that we work with have been able to actually get increased loyalty, longer tenure and reduce turnover.
At the risk of simplification and repeating ourselves, there has been a distinct generational shift in values, but what it boils down to is individualization – listening to what your employees value and working to accommodate them (assuming you are serious about retaining talent). HRM must take each situation, each person, and each job in the company and assess them one-by-one.
Work is more complex, more specialized; fewer candidates will meet all job requirements. At CloudForce HR, we actually view this as more a factor of the nature of the changing workplace, as opposed to a generational difference. Daily we work with clients who are training, coaching and recruiting for the future, which can mean investing more time and energy, but each and every organization we’ve handled has agreed that, when done properly, it yields very high ROI. It isn’t difficult, but it is a new paradigm human resource managers need to account for. Once the transition is made, our clients usually discover that locating and retaining talent is one of their greatest successes!