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June 13, 2023

Attracting and retaining Gen Z with HR technology solutions

Like generations before them, Gen Z is entering the workforce with their own unique expectations. Ceridian partner OnActuate explains how HR technology solutions can help employers connect with this younger cohort to better attract and retain them.

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The pandemic ushered in a cultural shift in the workplace with flexible work arrangements soaring in popularity, a greater focus on employee wellbeing, and a host of other initiatives designed to adapt to trying times. But even as employers are still navigating pandemic-era changes, a new cultural shift emerges.

This latest shift is driven by Gen Z becoming an increasingly larger part of the workforce. Members of Gen Z, defined as those born between 1997 and 2012, are digital natives who grew up with smart phones, social media, and streaming services. As a group, they are also extremely aware of social, economic, and environmental issues and advocate for social justice, racism, and gender equality.

With more baby boomers retiring, it’s now more important than ever for companies to consider Gen Z’s preferences. Here are four ways employers can connect with the latest generation to join the workforce.  

Embrace values, ethics, and morals

According to research from Deloitte, 49% of Gen Z respondents have made decisions in their careers based on their own personal values. To tap into the passion and drive of these workers, employers can provide opportunities to create a positive impact through initiatives like creating employee resource groups, supporting community activities, and offering time off to volunteer. Promoting DEI efforts in your employer branding is important as well. But be sure your DEI strategy isn’t all talk. Gen Z will be looking for companies that truly act and make ongoing improvements by understanding employee sentiment.

Emphasize flexibility

Much of Gen Z graduated high school or college online due to pandemic restrictions. This means many are entering the workforce with lots of virtual experience, which has shaped their work preferences. In Ceridian’s 2023 Pulse of Talent survey of 8,800 global workers, 44% of respondents aged 18-24 selected flexibility as their most important job attribute, ranking it above compensation (41%) and job security (26%). For many, the traditional 40-hour, nine-to-five workweek is no longer desirable. It’s important that companies embrace flexibility by allowing remote and hybrid work arrangements as well as flexible schedules.

Provide the right benefits

A recent graduate joining your company might prioritize paying off student loans over planning for retirement. Some companies have responded by offering to pay off student loans to attract Gen Z workers. And lifestyle benefits such as gym memberships, mental health services, and sabbaticals are all perks that can truly make a difference. Financial wellness also shouldn’t be overlooked. Benefits like on-demand pay align well with Gen Z’s sense of independence and experience living in an instant-gratification world.

Rethink HR technology solutions

Think about the technology that Gen Z grew up with, such as smartphone apps and social media, and apply those features to your HR tech. While, traditionally, human capital management (HCM) technology simply managed employee profiles and payroll, now HCM allows for perks such as on-demand pay, flexible scheduling, and self-service options. A modern solution like this can be accessed through a computer, tablet, or smartphone, meaning employees can get information or submit requests anytime, anywhere. By adopting technology that Gen Z is used to, companies can connect with them in a way that resonates.

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