Ready or not, here they come.
Members of the Millennial and Generation Z (“Gen Z”) generations now make up the largest segment of the workforce. These two generations share similar characteristics and needs—but those are drastically different than those of preceding generations. This is forcing organizations to revamp their employee experience, starting with benefits.
Take a look at this checklist and ask yourself, is your organization ready for millennials and Gen Z?
Are you offering benefits that address immediate concerns?
Younger workers are likely to decline voluntary benefits like disability insurance or life insurance in favor of ones that address their immediate concerns. The top concern facing most of your young employees is getting out of debt, and doing it fast.
Therefore, having ancillary benefits like student loan repayment assistance or commuter benefits would be far more attractive to this group, since it speaks directly to their concerns of getting out of debt and reducing immediate costs.
Can your employees interact with benefits the way they interact with everything else?
These generations have spent most, if not all, of their lives online, so they expect nothing less for their employee experience. For employers, this can mean two things:
- Providing benefits digitally. Using a platform for your benefits that allows employees to interact digitally is key in getting them to participate. Millennials and Gen Z use apps for everything from social media to banking, so it only makes sense that they would prefer their benefits on an app as well.
- Selecting benefits that bode well in a digital world. Benefits like telehealth, fitness incentive tracking, and identity theft protection fit nicely into a digital world.
Are you helping them save?
For a comfortable retirement, employees should be dedicating around 15-20% of their salary to savings from the beginning of their careers. However, a recent report from the National Institute on Retirement showed that two-thirds of working millennials in the US have not saved anything for their retirement.
The aforementioned study went on to break down the causes for millennials failing to save—lack of proper financial education and lack of accessibility were the two biggest reasons. This gives employers a great opportunity to provide resources on retirement savings and investing. Also, employers can consider revising their eligibility criteria (requisite hours or tenure length) to give employees a chance to jump-start their savings.
Are your benefits addressing more than just physical and financial wellness?
Younger workers face pressures and stressors that older generations did not face. Their increased levels of debt mean they are achieving independence later in life, which creates additional social pressure from peers and family members.
Younger generations are also more likely to face anxiety caused by social media and a constantly-connected lifestyle. Therefore, it’s important that health and wellness benefits cover more than just physical wellness. You can craft your wellness programs to be holistic, that way basic physical health, mental health, and emotional well-being are all considered, without employees feeling singled out.
So, are you ready?
If you can’t confidently answer “yes” to all of these questions, then it may be time to go back to the drawing board and examine your employee experience, specifically your benefits.
Remember, each generation brings its own strengths as well as its own needs. So don’t be afraid to tweak your offerings to millennials and Gen Z, because they bring unique talents and skills that other generations do not have. Embrace the onboarding of these tech-savvy, quick-learning, and multi-tasking young employees and provide them the best possible employee experience.