The modern workplace is significantly different from what it was even ten years ago. It is even more different from what it was back in the mid 1900’s when the “modern” office included typewriters, smoke filled rooms and stacks of paper. The reality is that the workplace has shifted and continues to shift from an employer driven culture to an employee driven culture.
With technology allowing more people to find work remotely, work for themselves or work from home employers are finding themselves competing for talent in ways that would most likely seem odd to business leaders in prior generations of the workforce.
As the overall culture of the workforce and workplace shifts, so too must business leaders if they are to stay relevant and continue to attract the top talent they wish to. Business leaders must identify ways that the culture and its potential workforce has changed and continues to change and utilize this information to better target, attract and retain talented employees.
Technology has continued to factor into this equation and therefore is often the best place to start for employers looking to gain an understanding on what the workforce of the future wants from a career. Employers can utilize technology to both understand what a potential employee wants from a job, as well as add technology into the job itself to attract potential hires. For example, an employer could add the option of working from home or remotely on certain days of the week if they found that potential hires wanted more flexibility with their work location.
Finding What Employees Want
Employers can utilize technology to find information on workplace culture statistics. These statistics can be highly beneficial to an employer looking for information on what their employees and potential hires want from their jobs and in their workplace.
Employers can utilize technology in various ways to find this information. There are several companies that compile and analyze various trends and mindsets in the existing and future workforce and provide that information in clear and concise formats to business leaders.
Executives and hiring managers can obtain these reports and utilize them to gain a better understanding of what their employees and potential hires want to see in their workplace. Another way employers can utilize technology to better understand what their employees want is to use social media to understand who their employees are outside of work.
If an employer sees an employee on a social media or networking site they can see what they like and what types of things they find valuable, which may be very different from what they know of the employee at work.
Additionally, employers should remember that it is often the case that people who work in different industries may want different things from their careers. This is generally important to remember when reading journals and research on employee mindsets as some may be targeted at a particular industry and could be very different from what employees in a different industry want from their jobs.
Change can be very difficult to enact. This is generally even more true in a corporate setting where a certain type of culture has existed for many years. There will often be people who wish to avoid change and to keep things the same way they have always been.
It’s important to remember that change does not generally happen overnight and that modifying a workplace to fit the demands of employees and potential talent will often take time and effort to complete.
However, when enacting change, it is usually best to start with the easiest things to change. This may be different depending on the workplace, management and what the employees are wanting. A good strategy is to bring employees and management together and determine what each party can be happy with and begin with those changes. This will usually allow each party to feel that they have had a say in what is being done.
While change is hard, it is now more necessary than ever. Fortunately, companies have the tools available to understand and enact meaningful change to continue to attract and maintain top talent.