A new generation of workers is joining companies around the world, and Gen Z priorities are starting to shift company values. As their presence increases, so too will their impact on business processes.
Generation Z consists of people born between 1995 and 2012, and their priorities are informed by their experiences. They’ve never had to use a physical paper map, they don’t know a world without social media and they’re unlikely to recognise a cassette or floppy disk. But they also care deeply about social issues and marking their own individual path. Here’s how these Gen Z priorities will make an impression on company policies.
Gen Z priorities in the business world
Mobile technology—with a human touch
Some say Gen Z isn’t mobile-first but mobile-only. This generation’s reliance on mobile technology in all aspects of life, both at work and play, means companies have to adapt rapidly in order to meet expectations.
Apps such as Uber and Uber Eats feed this desire for mobile-only technology to consumers. They offer business solutions to everyday tasks such as commuting to work or arranging employee or client meals, adding convenience and removing the need to worry about physical receipts.
Although this is a completely digital generation, Gen Z still has a yearning for human connection, especially in the office. In practice, it might mean something as simple as opting for video over voice calls or emails. This means that organisations may want to define a preferred video-conferencing solution in their policies.
Individuality and personalisation
Gen Z values individuality and personalisation. For those setting policies in today’s workplaces, little touches and attention to detail in this department can make marked impressions.
Providing this generation with a personalised, individual path in the workplace, rather than broad materialistic perks, may be the best form of incentive. For example, the ability to define their career on their own terms instead of following a traditional step-by-step plan is a growing trend. Therefore, flexible working hours and remote working options will likely attract and retain Gen Z talent.
When it comes to practical elements of corporate life, non-traditional options may speak to Gen Z workers. Meal deliveries for team lunches or client meetings offer more variety and individual choice than standard canteens or catering services. For business trips, accommodation that’s more unique than a traditional hotel, with possible bleisure perks, should factor highly into corporate policies.
Another key priority for Gen Z is sustainability. Millennials, the generation before them, shifted businesses towards this ideal. But it’s post-Millennials who have made this a critical factor in their lives and workplaces.
Corporate policies that allow options to work from home and avoid unnecessary travel, thus furthering the environmental cause, are likely to speak to Gen Z. When business travel is necessary, greener business travel solutions are likely to be entrenched in a Gen Z-focused workplace.
Companies should consider aligning with suppliers that offer sustainable travel options. E-bike and e-scooter subscriptions may appear in a company’s travel and expense policy in the future. Uber projects like Green (available in specific countries) and participation in the London Clean Air Plan give riders access to electric cars, which also align with Gen Z priorities.
Gen Z priorities: a summary
This generation tends to look at their mobile phones first and use social media heavily. But while they rely on technology, Gen Z priorities also place a significant emphasis on personalisation and sustainability. This translates into something far more significant and meaningful when it comes to considering how to incentivise and work with this critically important demographic in the business world.