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The Next Generation: How to Motivate Gen Z as They Enter the Workforce

April 25, 2024

With Generation Z surging into the workforce, HR directors, managers, and employers face new challenges and opportunities. Gen Z—or the 'Zoomers'—are not merely arriving on the scene; they're redefining it. They'll account for 27% of the workforce by 2025, but what motivational factors resonate with this progressive, purpose-driven generation? And how do you motivate them to work for you?


Understanding Gen Z's thinking

A more comprehensive, diverse, and forward-thinking approach differentiates Gen Z from other generations. As digital natives, most Zoomers embarked on their careers in a world already deep in the throes of a pandemic-enforced remote work revolution.

Gen Z's introduction to 'office life' has often been virtual, shaping their expectations and preferences distinctively. They value meaningful work and are passionate about the mental health and well-being of themselves and their peers —they're the most likely to seek professional mental health support when needed, so it's worth considering having mental health support options available within your business.

Gen-Z are also vocal about wanting flexible hours that orbit around their peak productivity periods and sustain their work-life harmony, as this has a direct impact on improving their mental health. This means employers must recognise that although the traditional 9 to 5 may still dominate the corporate scripture, Gen Z is questioning its absolute rule. This shift offers considerable ecological and social benefits, too, something that doesn't go unnoticed by this environmentally and socially conscious bunch.


Recruiting Gen Z: Purpose and flexibility are at the forefront

Audit your company's social responsibility initiatives if you want to speak Gen Z's language with integrity because this conscious cohort is watching. They want to apply their trade where it aligns with their values. Authenticity and action on social issues are paramount, presenting an opportunity for companies to attract and retain this age group.

Not only that, but Gen Z's preference for remote work and adaptable schedules raises vital questions about conventional work models. Their stance sparks a dialogue: Why does the rigidity if creativity and productivity soar on a more personalised timetable?


What Gen-Z workers want and how to provide it

Adopting flexible work hours, championing environmental initiatives, promoting a diverse workplace and showcasing a genuine investment in societal issues can lure Gen Z talent to your organisation. But once you've attracted top talent from Gen Z, you must deliver on these promises.

Gen Z seeks personalised benefits that fit their goal of achieving a solid work/life balance. Many companies now offer unlimited holidays and wellness programmes incorporating mind and body. Other ‘healthy lifestyle’ incentives such as gym memberships or even subscriptions to Audible, Spotify, or Netflix for relaxation and learning are also increasingly popular.

Combining a genuine interest in progressive initiatives and social purposes with modern and accessible technologies like a recognition platform that offers personalised, flexible rewards allows employers to create a responsive and connected space - that will continue to fulfill Gen-Z employees.

Engaging Gen Z: Recognition platforms are a game-changer

A timely and seamless feedback mechanism is crucial to winning Gen Z's approval. This is the age of instant gratification and continuous interaction with technology. Recognising this, digital platforms for personalised employee recognition and rewards can provide an avenue to meet Gen Z's expectations head-on.

Designed to integrate seamlessly with indispensable tools like Slack or Microsoft Outlook, providing instant acknowledgement and rewards that resonate with this demographic, these platforms speak Gen-Z's language. They are digital natives, so reaching them via smartphone apps and online interfaces is the most effective and natural contact channel.

Terryberry's employee engagement platform is a sterling example of how employee engagement can morph from a corporate buzzword into a tangible experience. The platform combines recognition, rewards, wellness, and analytics into a single streamlined space, creating a company culture that speaks with purpose while meeting Generation Z where they thrive—in a networked, conscious community. It offers a solid channel to keep Gen Z engaged and foster a work environment that responds to their unique needs and motivations.

Employers must commit to understanding and honouring their unique characteristics and demands in motivating Gen-Z as they integrate into our evolving workplaces. Humanities' youngest working generation isn't just looking for a job – they seek careers that channel their passions, respect their individuality, and reinforce their wellness. In answering this call, organisations can ignite a workforce brimming with innovation, inclusivity, and inspiration – qualities that Gen Z brings in abundance.

For employers, it's time to welcome and adapt to the ethos of the next generation. With the right approaches, underscored by platforms like the Terryberry Be Platform, businesses can foster a vibrant work culture characterised by engagement, recognition, and mutual growth—where every Gen Z finds the motivation to excel and innovate.