March 9, 2010 · For Employers
Today’s workforce is extremely different from that of the past. Employers have changed their attitudes about work and its meaning in their lives. People are changing jobs and careers more than ever. Even the so-called “permanent” workers are changing jobs more frequently. Employees don’t view any job as permanent any more.
In a recent study, people now expect to change jobs many times over the course of their lives. Further, workers now on average change jobs every 3-5 years. Now, workers view their best career strategy as being a series of diverse assignments and experiences that broaden and deepen their skills. The word “job-hopper” is being replaced with “job matrix.”
One fact is becoming very clear in today’s economy: Employee loyalty to a company is now tied directly to personal job satisfaction and development skills.The Annual Report of the President’s Council of Economic Advisers states that,
workers are most likely to be satisfied with their jobs, committed to their employers, and productive at work when they have jobs that offer meaning, learning opportunities and flexible work arrangements that are responsive to individual needs.
This means that job characteristics and workplace characteristics are far more powerful predictors of employee outcomes on the job than pay and benefits. In Future work: Trends and Challenges for Work in the 21st Century, the U.S. Department of Labor reports that there is a continual, growing trend toward balancing the demands of work and family, as well as the need for training and skills.
Employees of all generations, Mature, Baby boomers, GenX, and Millennials, are seeking the following:
- Control of their short and long-term futures
- Balance of work and family time
- Meaning of work and the addition of substance and fun to their lives
- Simplicity of personal goals and clear life objectives
- Security, knowing that they are employable and capable of earning an income to support their life choices.
Any employer who can help with these employees’ needs, will have a thriving workforce in today’s tight labor market.