How to structure an employee benefits package for Gen Z
Generation Z, also called Zoomers, is slowly but surely entering the workplace and companies must start to develop strategies to entice these workers into their ranks. Companies know that beyond salary and paid leave an employee benefit package matters to millennials, and it will also have a significant role when recruiting Gen Z candidates.
How can companies cater their employee benefits package to Gen Z? Do these packages have to differ dramatically from ones focusing on older generations? In this Pacific Prime article, we will tell you how to shape new employee benefits packages to be in line with Gen Z’s expectations.
For general tips on how to design a solid employee benefits plan, check out our video below.
How Gen Z differs from millennials
Millennials are the generation born between 1980 to mid-90s while Gen Z are those who were born between 1995 and 2010, and are currently the largest population age group on earth. Knowing the difference between the two is crucial for a business to stay relevant in the recruitment processes. There are certainly differences between the generations that you must take into consideration when preparing an employee benefits package for Gen Z, but there are similarities worth noting as well.
How are Gen Y and Gen Z similar?
Both of the generations are global and tech-savvy individuals, with a keen understanding of social media and orientation towards social responsibility and self-development. While Gen Z is often described as the generation born with the smartphone in their hands, Gen Y saw all the technological changes coming and have evolved with them. From an employee benefits perspective, the most significant similarities between the two generations are that they are both:
- Tech-savvy – Both generations are native to digital devices and applications, and can’t remember life without the internet.
- Digitally social – Both generations understand and use social apps for communication, work, pleasure, and information.
- Focused on development – Gen Z and Gen Y want to continually learn new things and become better at what they do.
- Social responsibility driven – This trend that started with millennials is now also being adopted by their Gen Z counterparts.
How is Gen Z different from the millennial generation?
Generation Z will bring significant changes to their new workplace due to the way they see the world and their behaviors. The main differences between the two generations show that Gen Z is:
- Even more tech-savvy – On average, Gen Z spends 17 hours a day on their mobile phones alone.
- More cautious – They are more financially cautious, as they have lived through and witnessed their family members and friends lose their jobs during the 2008 recession.
- Less educated – Gen Z prefers not to start their life with debt, and so many will eschew an expensive university education, as opposed to millennials who are the most educated generation but are not always able to find a job after graduating from university.
- More individualistic – Gen Z wants to achieve everything by themselves and prefers to work alone rather than in a team.
- Less tolerant – If a Gen Z experiences a problem with a brand or a website, it’s doubtful he or she will ever return there.
- Less patient – Gen Z grew up with a mobile device in their hand and, as a result, there is a tendency and expectation for everything to be available immediately.
- Less focused – On average, the attention span of a Gen Z person lasts only 8 seconds compared to 12 of the millennials.
- Better at multitasking – Gen Z can do multiple things at once, on multiple devices, and they can do it well.
How to offer benefits to Gen Z employees
Your employee benefits packages must be ready before Gen Z enters your workforce. With representatives of Gen Z being more money cautious, they are more likely to stay longer with their first employer, assuming that basic benefits are provided. Since they are more focused on owning and buying than “experiencing,” salary, comprehensive health insurance, training, and development programs will be of the utmost importance for them.
If an employer covers all work-related expenses, Gen Z can feel secure and may choose to stay with their employer long term. Companies can offer the following benefits to attract Gen Z workers.
- Satisfy their immediate concerns
Generation Z’s goals are usually short-term and come with high expectations. That’s why they will more likely be interested in benefits that will fulfill their immediate financial needs, such as comprehensive health care, tuition reimbursement, or commuter benefit plans. Gen Z is focused on individualism and is better at multitasking than millennials, so remote work or working from home can be an answer to their needs, saving them time and money on the everyday commute.
- Don’t forget about the “standard” employee benefit package
Health insurance at work is now considered a standard among employee benefits packages. While members of Generation Z are high achievers and are ready to work hard, they want all of their work-related needs to be met by their employer. That means adding vision, dental, maternity, and even wellbeing benefits to the package.
- Help fight work-related mental problems
Help these high-achievers combat stress, fatigue, and other common mental health issues in the workplace by offering employee assistance programs (EAPs). No longer will your new employees be shy to talk about these issues; especially if you provide a safe place for them to do it.
- Make it digital
Offering telemedicine programs or virtual mental health counseling via a mobile phone will make them feel more safe, as the digital world is what they know and understand very well. Being able to get instant access to a doctor’s advice and get prescriptions without losing time for a visit, and getting convenient and mobile-friendly emotional support instead, will be much valued by these smartphone natives.
- Offer financial aid or advice
Since a Gen Z worker is very money cautious, offering financial counseling sessions or loan payment aid will help to build trust and loyalty with your company. Explaining the importance of saving, and then helping them to develop their plans for the future, is a way to retain a young employee.
- Add ‘lifestyle’ benefits
This generation is expecting employers to supply them with the opportunity for personal growth on their terms. Let Gen Z staff choose how they want to spend their lifestyle benefits by offering lifestyle spending accounts. They can then choose between a gym membership, spa weekend getaway, or an extra language or skills course – any of which are not imposed by the company.
How to attract Generation Z candidates: Top tips
Now that you understand the benefits that Gen Z candidates are looking for, you can use the following tips to attract top talent to your workforce.
- Invest in company culture – Salary and benefits are a great starting point, but Gen Z candidates are also looking to join companies that are in line with their values and have a strong brand. They are also looking for a dynamic company culture that supports their growth through training and opportunities.
- Modernize the application process – When it comes to looking for job opportunities, Gen Z is turning to social media, friends, and the internet in general, making a smooth online application process a must. It’s also important to be active online and offer quick responses.
- Get referrals from existing employees – Encourage employees to refer their friends and peers and measure applicants based on their personality and potential rather than their years of experience or age.
- Work on your job description – Offer information about professional development, career growth, and more from the start.
- Encourage growth – Make it clear that the company culture promotes growth and work-life balance so candidates can picture a sustainable future.
- Give a sense of purpose – Gen Z want to do more than work to pay bills, they want to make a difference in the world and find meaning in their work.
Structure your employee benefits package for Gen Z with Pacific Prime
These are just some of the ways that you can attract Gen Z candidates with your employee benefits package. The ultimate goal of employee benefits is to keep employees happy and retain them for as long as possible, in addition to keeping them healthy and productive. However, if you want to attract these new workers, you probably need to re-think and restructure your employee benefits package as Gen Z joins the workforce. This will be the perfect occasion for your company to recruit them for long-term employment, assuming the employee benefits package is the right fit.
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