Randstad released a report in 2022 that explores intergenerational relations in today’s workforce. This report was created based on a survey outlining key issues that impact the working relationship of the various generations.

Whether you’re just starting your career, close to retirement, or somewhere in between, knowing how to relate to colleagues from different generations will help you to communicate and collaborate more effectively with them, creating an environment where #workfeelsgood.

about the survey

Randstad launched Workmonitor, a report looking into the drivers and preferences of the different generations in Australia. The research was conducted in the first half of 2022 and examined 34 job markets in Europe, Asia Pacific, and the Americas.

Over 1,000 Australians participated in the study and included workers aged 18 to 67 who work at least 24 hours per week.

5 key factors intergenerational workers consider

man and woman smiling looking at the computer
man and woman smiling looking at the computer

The survey identified five key factors that indicate differences between age groups in the workforce. These factors are not limited to one location but are global factors that are slowly changing the power dynamics in the workplace. 

If you want an insight into how each generational group views and behaves in the workplace, helping you to create an environment of trust, collaboration and empathy or #workthatfeelsgood, read on!

1. attitude

Younger generations highly value work-life balance. They often want a fulfilling job, which motivates them to work harder. In contrast, older generations tend not to focus on work-life balance when choosing or sustaining employment. 

Globally, Latin America demonstrates the highest level of need for work-life balance. Nearly half of the Latin Americans surveyed quit jobs because the job did not match their lifestyle. This is much higher than the rest of the world. 

The COVID-19 pandemic caused many people around the world to refocus their attitudes. Happiness is of more excellent value than other qualities to many workers after experiencing a pandemic. The pandemic forced workers to stay home and focus on the well-being of their families, a motivation that has continued into post-pandemic times. 

The pursuit of happiness is fundamental to Gen Zs and Millennials. Older workers are often more concerned about job security than happiness, perhaps due to the proximity to retirement. 

Younger workers are also more likely to quit if their jobs do not make them happy and, in particular, value low-stress, balanced lifestyles over higher salaries.

2. values 

Many people want their organisation’s values to align with their values. More than 40% of workers surveyed said they would not work in an organisation where the company values did not align with their own. About the same number of people said that it’s important that diversity and inclusion efforts are shared among their supervisors.

Companies often use incentives that promote their Environment, Social, and Governance (ESG) issues to address these concerns.

Similarly, younger workers value purpose over their paycheck. They want something fulfilling. Younger workers want to make a lasting impact in some way. If they don’t feel fulfilled, they are more likely to leave.

This, again, contrasts with the more security-focused older generations.

3. empowerment  

While most workers have not received increased benefits such as healthcare, retirement, or paid time off, many have reported increased salary and professional development. Talent can be hard to find, and employers must ramp up their benefits to recruit the best workers for the job.  

Younger workers are also interested in learning. They often prioritise learning over earning, a way to experience the world. When people learn, they feel empowered to do work that has a lasting impact.

Woman smiling while typing in her tablet
Woman smiling while typing in her tablet

4. flexibility 

Nearly 75% of workers value flexibility in the work location.

The COVID-19 pandemic started a wave of remote work. Some employers are continuing to offer remote or hybrid options. Most employers, however, returned to complete in-person work.

Considering younger workers’ needs for balance over salary, it is not surprising that many continue to seek opportunities for remote and hybrid work. 

5. self-improvement

More than 80% of the workforce is interested in self-improvement at work.

This includes professional development and career coaching. Workers generally want to grow their skills. Younger workers want more self-improvement than older workers who are closer to retirement.

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collaborate with other generations

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employability - people in a row in various color combinations. Please use the background color as indicated in the file name.

looking ahead


Now that you know the research, you can use these insights to assess your career and what you need from your leader. These insights can also help you build stronger relationships with your colleagues by respecting and adapting your style.

Here are some key takeaways:

evaluate your attitudes and values

Ask yourself about what matters most to you.

  • What do you value most in a job?
  • Do you want a work-life balance, or would you prefer to focus on work?
  • What other obligations require your time?
  • What do you value most in an employer, and what are your must-have values in an organisation?
  • What jobs offer the appropriate amount of flexibility for your life? 

consider how you want to be empowered

Consider how much or how little you want to grow.

  • Are you at a stage in your career where you want to learn new or additional skills?
  • Are you focused mainly on job maintenance before retirement?
  • What job environments fit with how you want to be empowered? 

respect all attitudes and values

Regardless of the company you choose to work for, you will work with people who are different from you. Age differences may be a significant factor in your workplace. Remember that at various stages of life, people often value other things.

There is no right or wrong, just different. Ask yourself and reflect on how these differences impact your work and how you respect others

for more jobseeker insights

Visit Randstad’s career advice blog.

To find work that feels good, check out our latest jobs at randstad.com.au.