A ‘job for life’ no longer the driving force
SHORT attention spans or an upbringing which has groomed them for more: What do Gen Ys want when it comes to a job?
Studies have shown that these career nomads could have as many as 15 to 20 jobs in their lifetime, compared to their predecessors who often settled in the one workplace for decades.
Classic Recruitment consultant Rosie Kent has had plenty of first-hand experience with Gen Y job seekers, and equally with a few frustrated employers.
She summed up the difference in attitudes to careers and why there might be some tension between generations.
"My mum went to nursing college and that's all she was going to be. It was about finding a little peg and being happy with that.
"We've grown up being told we can be anything we can want. It was Destiny's Child 'independent women' and the Spice Girls 'girl power'. That really resonated with me, being a young woman and driving a successful career as well as enjoying a lifestyle."
Despite common stereotypes of younger generations as unmotivated and unfocused, Ms Kent had met many driven young people who knew what they wanted out of life and a career.
"Nowadays we're after much more than a job. Life isn't about what you do nine to five. We expect to have so much more and do so much more.
"We've grown up with the world constantly changing and we're used to that."
She said the key to employers wanting to hang on to their younger workers was to adapt to the changing values and attitudes.
"Many younger people are after flexible options and career development.
"I know employers who have recognised that within their younger teams and build things into the job so it's not just a job.
"It's a career path within the organisation."
Her fellow recruitment consultant Chelsie Steinohrt was one example of a Gen Y who had stayed on board after being offered the chance to progress through the workplace.
Ms Steinohrt started working as a receptionist for an accounting firm when she was 18.
"I wasn't sure which career path to follow at the time," she said.
"After a year in that role, I was looking to take on a new challenge, but unless I wanted to be an accountant, there wasn't anywhere to advance within the company.
"I started doing administration and recruitment support work at
Classic Recruitment and was offered the opportunity within the business to become a recruitment consultant.
Ms Steinohrt said she had been taking courses and looking at study to further her career.
"While I haven't exactly been 'job-hopping' I have grown and moved up through different positions within the same company."
WHAT DO GEN Ys WANT IN A JOB?
- Learning and development
- Career progression
- Flexible working conditions
- Recognition and rewards
- Strong leadership and management
- Regular performance reviews
- Competitive salary
- Work/life balance