There is a wealth of skilled individuals from a wide demographic range representing today’s fast-paced workforce. Comprised of Baby Boomers (born 1946-1964), Generation X (born 1965-1980) and Millennials (born after 1980), the 21st Century workforce offers abundant experience and diverse perspectives. In turn, this diversity yields creative collaboration and innovation.
However, employers face a major challenge. Voluntary employee turnover rates have been increasing since 2011, reaching an all-time high of 11% in 2014¹. This upward trend begs the question: why is this phenomenon happening? Though clear answers may prove elusive, recent data suggests that over 35% of Millennials are actively looking for new career opportunities, with 30% of Generation X workers following suit². Focusing on younger workers to help balance generational diversity offers an easy – but maybe misguided – theory about where employers should place efforts.
Is there an issue with employee engagement that’s causing a decline in loyalty? Are employers investing enough in their talent, providing encouragement, motivation and alignment between the goals of the worker and the goals of the organization? Finally, do needed proactive remedies vary by generation?
Market Survey helps answer some of these questions. In its Fall 2015 U.S. Workforce Study², the firm found that employee retention approaches may not need to vary between generations after all. While Millennials are often categorized as the most difficult to engage, the top two drivers of engagement are more consistent with the values of Baby Boomer and Gen X workers. According to the study, top motivators include personal growth/development and confidence in the company’s future. In short, it’s entirely possible for employers to please all demographics with a single approach.
“Personal growth and development” is a large category that offers employers a wide range of opportunities to engage and retain workers in the places they want to be met. Whether it’s improving the job experience or enhancing employee benefits packages with valuable tools like individual credit monitoring and ID protection products, outside-the-box offerings can be well worth the investment. A longer-tenured, more-satisfied workforce inspires confidence in the company and benefits everyone involved.
1 Compensation Force 2014 Turnover Rates by Industry
2 Market Survey’s U.S. Workforce Study-Employee Engagement and the Generations