Almost every business will have a multi-generational workforce in the next decade. The good news is that when it's managed well, it can be extremely powerful.
Two-thirds of employers taking part in Randstad’s World of Work survey say one of the biggest challenges they face is the effective management of a multi-generational workforce. But it is something every business is going to have to do well if they want to remain competitive in the environment of an ageing population.
Because the population is living longer – for the first time in history – workforces will contain four generations. So how do you manage all of those different levels of expectation?
Know your workforce
Develop a clear and regularly updated picture of the generational shape of your workforce. Before you build an engagement strategy, you must know who you’re building it for.
Custom build your own program
Off-the-shelf engagement programs don’t work for multi-generational workforces. Instead, look around at other industries for examples of how they engage broad groups of people. Airline frequent flyer programs often provide good learnings.
Constantly survey your workforce to find out whether your strategy is having its desired effect. In conducting regular surveys you can also ensure you’re always improving.
Approach diversity with a C-level commitment
This is not a project for the person sitting in the corner of the HR department. It needs to be owned and supported by the executive team to ensure a behavioural and cultural change permeates the entire organisation.
Provide adequate training
Managers at all levels, and from all generations, must be equipped with the tools to deal with the wants and needs of those from various generations. Training is vital in ensuring those skills exist within your teams.
Make mentoring work in all directions
Mentoring shouldn't just go from senior to junior staff. With so many generations in the one place, mentoring and the sharing of skills, knowledge and experience can go both upwards as well as downwards. To get the most out of mentoring, make this a formal process.
Get diversity right and you’ll be rewarded with a resilient, innovative and happy workforce. Some generations will provide drive, some will offer reliability, others will be heroes of risk and innovation. When they all work together they create a formidable force.
Looking to build up your workforce? Randstad recruitment consultants can help you find the right person for the role.