Generation Z are the students and university graduates of today and the employees and consumers of tomorrow. They buy things based on battery life, interact with their favorite brands using mobile applications and it's highly likely that, one day, business owners will have to recruit them via their much-loved smartphone's.
This 21st-century generation will comprise of almost 1 in 5 workers within the next 10 years. As a demographic they have been described as numerous things, including the "screenagers" and the "first tribe of true digital natives."
Being able to recognise, and respond to the defining attributes of this post-literate, tech-savvy generation is vital for business owners today. But why is it so important to hire them? Dan Schawbel, founder of Millennial Branding said "Gen Z are entrepreneurial-minded. While many companies are reluctant to hire these types of workers, I think hiring entrepreneurs makes a lot of sense. Companies need to innovate and that innovation comes from within."
Research suggests that Gen Z have a unique set of values when it comes to the workplace. These values include ownership and individuality. They are motivated by job variety and creativity but are heavily influenced by the internet and peer groups when it comes to career choice. Due to the nature of the modern world they live in, Gen Z like to learn and work in interactive environments and they enjoy collaborating with peers to achieve results.
Randstad performed some market research to discover a little bit more about what makes Gen Z tick.
When asked which type of work environments do you best collaborate in? 38% of Gen Z said they have no preference in contrast to just 16% of them saying they would like to work in a traditional office. Interesting that 16% of their predecessors (Gen Y) said they had no preference and 46% of them said a traditional office was their preference.
With everything that we know about them it is clear to say that to attract Generation Z into your business the environment needs to be flexible, have multiple opportunities for development and be supportive of lifelong learning. A combination of the latest technology and a collaborative environment is what will excite them the most.
As the younger, tech-reliant generation make their mark in the workplace it will be interesting to see how general business behaviors change.
Your business strategy will have a huge impact on how attractive working for you will be to the 'tech natives'.
My advice to business owners out there would be, don't be wary of them, embrace them.