Are you planning for the workforce of tomorrow, or yesterday?

The spotlight is shifting, and a new generation has different demands to the widely feared Millennials. Employers need to get the most out of their recruitment budget, and ensure they’re not losing out on the best available talent.

At Benefex’s Winter Forum, their clients were treated to a keynote address from world-renowned economist, author, and television personality, Noreena Hertz. Hertz has spent the last four years researching the demographic she calls ‘Generation K’ (those born between 1994 and 2003). Within two years, this generation will make up 1/3 of the workforce.

First things first – Benefits
Workplace technology is advancing at such rapid pace, and Glassdoor has made such a significant stamp on how we shape our workplace culture, that employee benefits are – thankfully – a given for most organisations. With this ubiquity, however, comes the risk that we as employers become complacent, relying on the everlasting popularity of retail discounts and gym memberships, leaving our benefits offerings to stagnate. Delivering this via intuitive, slick workplace technology is necessary, to the point where it’s elemental. It’s no longer impressive; more a hygiene factor.

Focusing on health
Given this, the way in which you’re going to stand out and appeal to your younger employees is to introduce (or revisit) benefits that are inherently creative, and a focal point of this must be on healthcare. As a demographic that’s experiencing more anxiety than any that has come previously, benefits like voluntary PMI, supplemental health insurance, disability insurance, and access to counselling deliver them peace of mind when it comes to the state of their health. Those employers who do not have these in place must re-evaluate this approach. Those employers whose healthcare benefits have remained the same, year-on-year, must look to their providers to see what more they can be doing to improve employee healthcare, and how you deliver that healthcare journey. If you don’t innovate when it comes to your benefits, your competitors will, and ultimately you will lose the war for talent.

Authenticity and doing the right thing
Generation K are “deeply distrustful of establishment institutions”. Doing the right thing is hugely important to them, yet only six percent believe that large employers will do just that. If we think about the employer/employee relationship, there is a good chance that many of Generation K will arrive on their first day at work already distrusting their employer to act in their best interests. Your employee benefits offering is therefore one of the earliest opportunities you have to set the scene and show this new demographic of employees that you genuinely care about what matters to them.

Community and values
Think about benefits which are focused on giving back to the community, the environment, and the wider CSR piece. Whether it’s a charitable giving scheme, cycle-to-work, or paid time off to volunteer in the local community, these could all significantly influence how your Gen K employees feel about their relationship with their employer.

Financial benefits
Financial concerns for Generation K are real and growing. Organisations can respond by reviewing their financial wellbeing offering and ensuring that it is accessible to those youngest recruits to enter the workplace. Remember, though: to derive maximum value from it, it needs to be communicated in a way which directly speaks to those concerns, rather than seeming elitist and irrelevant. Put down the weighty whitepapers and policy documentation laced in business jargon. This is a generation which demands straight talking.

Generation K expect something special from their employers. They want to make a difference in this world. And Benefex have the opportunity to help them do just that.

Find out how Benefex can help you support your up-and-coming employees with their  OneHub platform!

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