The unemployment rate in Canada is lower than it’s been since the 2008 financial crisis. While this is certainly great news for the country, it creates a different dynamic in the workforce than what’s been typical of the past several years.
Instead of having a saturated pool to draw from, companies must once again compete in the war for talent. This, plus the fact that there’s a new dominant generation in the workforce (we’re talking about you, Millennials), and we’re looking at a unique environment for company’s looking to hire.
Today’s most talented Millennials are redefining the workplace, and organizations that are hesitant to adapt will be overlooked. Instead of missing out on the innovators and game-changers, consider these tips to enhance your workplace and make it more attractive to potential employees:
Create a cooperative culture
When bringing new workers on board, have honest conversations about your company’s culture. The best time to discover that your organization won’t be a good cultural fit for a potential employee is during the interview process – not months (and thousands of dollars) into a training program.
A recent study out of the University of Missouri declared that a “values gap in [the] workplace can lead Millennials to look elsewhere.” Focusing on sustainability – a top priority for many Millennials – the research demonstrated that simply declaring a value as important wouldn’t cut it. The younger generations want to see their employers’ claims in action, and they want to be part of the process.
And while these particular findings centered on environmental sustainability, the results would be accurate when discussing a gap in expectations for any value. To attract and retain the right people, don’t just pay this generation lip service – deliver what you promise (or don’t make the claim at all).
Provide the freedom to work
Due to the nature of the modern world, with technological advancements expanding at an unprecedented rate, there is an unlimited number of ways in which people can ‘work’.
Work isn’t defined as a place we go to each day. Rather, it’s something we do.
And depending on the nature of the job, it’s something we can do anytime and from virtually anywhere. Which is why it feels unnatural for the younger generations to work within the constraints of a traditional, 9-5 office atmosphere.
Instead, corporations should focus on creating a culture of trust – allowing workers to maintain some control over their own schedules. Most likely, this allowance will leave long-standing employees who prefer the more conventional style of work with an uneasy feeling, but convince them give it a chance. The mutual trust and respect may entice a ‘flight-risk’ Millennial to remain committed to your company.
This freedom extends beyond simply when people work, also affecting how and where they work. Top Millennial workers are willing to commit to unconventionally long hours, but they’d like something in return: a workplace that doubles as a non-workplace. Progressive companies that truly want to attract the best can begin by offering spaces designed for downtime, connection, and fun. Hitting the reset button throughout the day boosts employees’ moods and productivity. Plus, given the opportunity to connect casually, coworkers may find themselves engaging in unintentional and unrestrained collaboration.
Innovative thinkers seek work environments that embrace and empower their creativity and talent.
And how does your business achieve this? In 2017, the most likely answer is with technology.
Most important is connectivity. The most engaging and unique office layout is rendered useless in the modern era if workers can’t connect. Make sure your network is capable of handling multiple mobile workers. Strategically place an abundance of power outlets anywhere people may want to touch down and work. Ensure your WiFi is powerful in all corners of the office. Then, depending on the type of work your company does, invest in the software that people need to do their best work.