Top Ways That Generational Differences are Shifting the Workplace

According to a recent study conducted by ERC, generational differences are shifting human resource programs towards increasing emphasis on training, development, compensation, and work/life programs. Thirty-seven percent of organizations reported a greater need for more training and development programs to make up for skill deficiencies in younger workers and about a quarter of organizations reported a need to increase knowledge management programs retaining older worker knowledge. Also, several organizations reported a need to revamp their compensation programs. Additionally about a third of organizations reported a need to enhance their work/life balance programs and options.

Top Five Ways Generational Differences are Shifting the Focus of Workplace Programs

  1. Need for more training and development programs to make up for skill deficiencies of younger generation.
  2. Revamping compensation programs
  3. More work/life balance programs and options
  4. Increase in knowledge management programs retaining older workers’ knowledge
  5. Shift from “one size fits all” programs to more fluid and dynamic relationships

These HR service shifts reflect the generational issues prevalent in today’s workforce including knowledge retention of older workers, increased training for younger workers with skill deficiencies, and modification of compensation programs to meet the needs of several generations of workers combined. Another survey conducted by ERC supports these results, showing that a majority of organizations are focusing more heavily on training and development initiatives and nearly half of organizations reported that offering incentives/bonuses to lower-level positions is necessary in order to be successful in attracting and retaining employees. This suggests that performance pay is being offered to a variety of employee levels versus traditional higher levels of employees such as managers and executives. Finally, younger worker interests as well as older worker needs have also prompted organizations to consider offering more work/life balance programs and options to help attract and retain a talented workforce.

“The workforce is starting to change dramatically and our research suggests that in order to attract and retain necessary talent, organizations will increasingly need to alter their workplace practices relative to HR services and certainly not limited to training, development, compensation, and work/life balance,” says Susan Pyles, Senior Consultant and Trainer with ERC.

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