Generation Y: Why they matter

When we look at the recruitment and retention strategies there are so many perks flying around that it seems that Generation Y won’t EVER want to work for our caring professions; $2,000 paid vacations, free food, working from home, unlimited holiday time ...

PLUS they need a trophy every month to show you appreciate the work they do, and they want to be CEO within three days of getting the job.  It's no wonder that Generation Y get it hard when they enter a new workplace.

Generation Y are looking for many things in a workplace, but perks and those trophies are not going to keep them there. It’s time we looked past the stereotypes and media hype. 

We hear it all the time from many of your workers - Generation Y are entitled, immature, and inexperienced,  BUT not only are these now taken as fact by some of your managers and leaders, its leading us to not consider them for key roles in our workplaces.

This is a Generation that will soon make up the majority of the Australian workforce, AND right now they account for the majority of the international working population. We need to understand them if we want to have a workforce and leaders for your organisation’s future.

Surveys have revealed that the aged care workforce median age is over 10 years above the Australian average, and the percentage of younger workers has remained stagnant at 18% since 2003. That's less than one in five workers under the age of 35. Our mature age workforce is being employed by the sector, but our new graduates, professionals, and Generation Y workers are not considering aged care as a positive career opportunity.

We need a 300% increase in workers to meet our caring needs by 2050. Current industry statistics are showing that we are not meeting this target. My very real fear, and motivator, is knowing that if we don’t recruit and retain skilled professionals in the ageing and caring sector, our loved ones will fall far short of the standard of care that we all deserve. With Generation Y set to be the largest working population in less than 9 years time, more must be done to improve the collaboration between education providers, organisations, and our workforce to establish and connect sustainable initiatives.

Generation Y want YOU to see them as individuals. They want to grow in your company and give back through connecting and creating impact in their community. These guys are smart, curious, and passionate. If your workplace doesn’t understand this, they will go work for someplace else that does. 

At Acorn Network, we have a lot of organisations ask who Generation Y are, what are they looking for, how can they retain them? Smart organisations are implementing new ways of recruiting and retaining our emerging young talent. So we thought we would share some of the key traits they hold, so you can start embracing a new mindset, rather than crush it.

Gen Y are looking for organisations that embrace:

  1. Growth - opportunities to excel and acquire new skills
  2. Value - they want to work towards a clear goal and vision
  3. Connection - they want to be part of the work community

Our healthcare, caring, and not-for-profits have brilliant missions and visions, but this is not coming through to our young talent. We need to create new ways of thinking and communicating if we are to inspire and engage our young leaders. Join me in working towards our goals of a connected, informed, and committed community that is able to adequately care for our ageing needs.