According to research done by Gallup, six out of every 10 millennials are open to new job opportunities. The research further confirms that young workers are the least engaged generation in today’s workplace. With people who belong to this generation known for being “job hoppers”, it is high time for organizations to adopt a different approach in order to retain young, talented staff members.
Yet another report from Gallup confirms that 21 percent of millennials change jobs every year. This is three times higher than the percentage of non-millennials who report the same. With this kind of employee turnover costing the USA economy a whopping $30 billion annually, the need for clear cut career paths is now more evident than ever.
But why do millennials seem to demand so much unlike other workers? For starters, millennials tend to focus not only on the present but also the future perspectives of their careers. Besides demanding good compensation, they also have an innate need to feel secure in their job roles. It is worth noting that this generation is particularly interested in personal growth. In other words, organizations that don’t offer them well planned career paths are bound to lose them.
According to PWC study titled “Managing tomorrow’s people – the future of work 2020”, most young workers expect to have 2 to 5 employers in their career.
This underscores the need for breaking with tradition and introducing innovative policies to keep this generation of workers engaged. Indeed, appreciating the role of career paths to young employees can significantly keep attrition under control.
Career paths comprise many varying forms of career progression. These include (but not limited to) dual career ladders, vertical career ladders, encore careers and horizontal career lattices. Young employees tend to feel better engaged when they understand that the human resource department is genuinely concerned about their growth.
Implementing career paths also has a direct impact on staff morale, motivation, career satisfaction and responsiveness in meeting organizational goals. A new paradigm that has emerged is one where individuals want to be at least partly in control of their path.
In light of such facts, HR departments need to allow their employees to have a voice in creation of their career path. Gone are the days when drawing a plan for employees involved filling a spreadsheet with trajectories. Today’s workforce wants an active role in making crucial decisions about their future. This necessitates deeper involvement of HR practitioners particularly in adopting a customized approach to talent management. Ongoing training is yet another important facet of career pathing. Given that the majority of them grew up at a time of rapid technological advancement, millennials are used to change. Compounding this with the fact that the job market is equally fluctuating, it is quite clear why young workers are highly determined to remain on top of their game.
How are HR departments keeping up with these demands? Well, according to research by Deloitte, 63 percent of young workers feel their leadership skills are not being adequately honed. The research further alluded to the fact that organizations that train their youngest employees are more likely to retain them unlike those that don’t. There is therefore need for more investment in ongoing training among organizations that aim to keep their talent pool intact.
Beyond The Entry-Level Conundrum
Creating career paths for young workers involves more than just enhancing flexibility and ongoing training. Millennials thrive in new challenges. They don’t like to be stuck in an entry-level conundrum. As a matter of growth, they always look for ways to put their talents to better use. Lack of fresh challenges at the workplace can aggravate an already worse labor attrition problem across industries. Research by Man Power Group found out that two-thirds of young workers expected to be promoted in less than two years. This confirms their appetite for new challenges at the workplace.
Ultimately, there is a huge need to proactively reshape the workplace given the fact that young workers are expected to form 50 percent of the global workforce by 2020. With increased likelihood of job rotations and demand for more freedom, millennials are clearly looking for well thought-out career paths. Human resource departments therefore need to customize their approach to this sequence to boost staff acquisition and retention going forward.
Written by: Bryan Dough
Bryan Dough is a Social Media Strategist based in Melbourne, Australia. Bryan has worked with few of the leading consumer brands to build and deliver their social media campaigns. While being passionate about discovering the latest tactics and strategies in social media, Bryan enjoys spending his spare time going for a hike in the Mornington Peninsula. A beautiful area off from Bayside in Melbourne.