One of the most significant challenges employers face is trying to increase productivity within the workplace, as there is a significant different between the work styles of younger and older employees.
Professor Jeremy Myerson, director of the Helen Hamlyn Centre at the Royal College of Art, said that Twenty years ago HR Managers may have paid lip service to issues surrounding increasing age diversity in the work place. Now, senior executives realize that poor management of generations at work has a profound impact on their bottom line.
The latest statistics from the Office of National Statistics indicate that nearly a third of working people in the UK will be over 50 by 2020. Across Europe increased life expectancy and decreasing birth rates are creating an aging workforce. And yet the youngest generation already makes up 11% of European office workers.
According Professor Myerson, this creates very serious organizational issues for business managers relating to communication, sharing knowledge and retaining staff as employee as each are considered polar opposites in terms of the way they work and learn.
Most organizations today have large workforce of varied ages , and employers have the hard task of making sure that the working environment is as harmonious and productive as it can been.
According to the latest workplace survey by Steelcase, the youngest generation of office workers They are three times more likely to work out of the office or while travelling compared with older colleague, place less importance to meeting in a formal place and are less distracted by noise in the office.
Sutherland added that other generations have adopted technology but the next generations were born into it and it is really beginning to show in the workplace now. They’re not fussed about meeting rooms and big conference tables and are quite happy working in a cafe or lounge area.
They do value natural daylight more though and are more likely to ask employers about air quality and other environmental issues. The biggest thing for these young workers is quick and easy access to colleagues, they don’t like having to negotiate their way round a maze of private offices.