14 Mar 2014

Firms told to pay attention to Gen Y

7:05 pm on 14 March 2014

Most New Zealand companies are failing to meet the demands and expectations of the Generation Y workforce, and that's hurting their business, a survey shows.

Young man on mobile phone and laptop

Photo: PHOTO NZ

The Deloitte study questioned 2500 business and human resources leaders worldwide.

It found 86 percent of executives had reservations about their teams' abilities to attract, retain and engage staff, particularly younger workers.

Those younger workers - currently aged 13 to 31 and known as Generation Y or millenials - will make up 75 percent of the workforce in the next 10 years.

Deloitte New Zealand partner Hamish Wilson said the situation was the same in New Zealand, and firms which failed to engage with younger workers would fall behind competitors.

"If you look at the likes of Google and Yahoo globally, they work in different ways, so in order to be able to attract and bring these people and hold these people, we need to change the way that we work," Mr Wilson said.

"The issue is that we have talent shortages at the moment in New Zealand and that's impacting on business results, yet a lot of these businesses just don't have the programmes in place to promote, attract, retain or engage their employees."

Millennials wanted different work practices, more development, greater opportunities and innovation, and they expected self service, he said.

And, if they did not get it, they were happy to leave an organisation as they were used to change.

"They've been brought up with technology, innovation, and they're actually coming into businesses and showing senior business folks how to actually do things from a technology perspective."