AS millennials are expected to fill half of the workplace population in four years’ time, companies are urged to look into nontraditional benefits and compensation that would cater to their younger set of employees.
During the “Gen Why” forum organized by recruitment firm Q2 HR Solutions, human-resource and marketing experts discussed ways to improve working relations with the Generation Y in the work place and the difference in working patterns across different age groups.
According to Q2 HR Solutions Executive Vice President Sara McLeod, companies can take their cue from the “instantaneous culture” of millennials who want to achieve more in a short period of time.
McLeod said that this is due to the millennials growing in a time when technology has quickly advanced.
“They are instantaneous and there is impatience and the feeling that maybe they should be moving up the corporate ladder faster than the generation before. Working in a company for two, three or four years is considered a long time now, whereas the baby boomers, they have maximum three or four jobs in a 40-year life cycle. Then the next generation, maybe five or six years and then now, two or three years is considered a long time,” McLeod said.
She added: “There is an element of entitlement and I think it is because when they grew up, that generation had mobile phones and remote controls on the TV so things were much more instantaneous so their lives are much more instantaneous so there is expectations of things happening faster and you have to move with them and you have to be faster.”
According to McLeod, other changes in having to adjust to a millennial work force is providing compensation other than the traditional health coverage and now must include travel and other benefits that are experience-based.
“In the old days, it was very traditional benefit, where health insurance plans was a benefit and car plans. Right now, I think companies need to adjust a little bit that benefits do not necessarily have to be monetary, but they can be experience where they can achieve goals in work and in life, at the same time. I think companies have to understand the life goals of their millennials, as well as the corporate goals,” McLeod said.
With different opportunities and information available online, young professionals have more options at hand and can choose which companies provide the most interesting and unique benefits, as well as chances for growth and career advancement, McLeod said.
“I think the key is the alignment betweenthe life goals of your younger generation and the company goals and if you can align the two you will be very successful. If you know and understand the person that you are hiring, that this is where they want to be, this is what they want to achieve, this is what they want to do, you can then create employee relation programs within your organization to match what they want to do for themselves personally, as well as [for the] business,” she said.
According to McLeod, experts are seeing millennials attrition rate to be from one to three years, depending on what industries they are in.
Meanwhile, Acumen Managing Director Pauline Fermin, who presented a study on the difference in work profiles between millennials and older generation, companies should note that millennials were born and had grown up in an “age of possibilities” with technological advancements and the freedom of a postdictator era.
Fermin said technology is a millennial’s fifth sense and, therefore, should be optimized by most employers.
Fermin added that the younger working generation tend to have work and personal life rolled into one.
She explained this is why millenials prefer flexibility in working hours and usually appreciate more travel and leisure benefits than monetary or health bonuses.
Other speakers in the forum were advertising firm IXM CEO Third Domingo, former Human Resource Manager for Shell Philippines Gerboy Ortega, offshore talent provider Flat Planet Business Improvement Manager Derek Stewart, and Information and Technology and Business Process Association of the Philippines Executive Director for Talent Development Penny Bongato.
Q2 HR Solutions is the first Investor in People (IiP) Gold Accredited Company and the only IiP accredited human resource recruitment company in the Philippines.
Image credits: Rodel Alzona