Employees from different age groups expressed stark differences in identifying which features organizations should emphasize to attract members of their own generational cohort as employees. Baby boomers are much more inclined to mention characteristics related to employment stability, such as fiscally responsible or sound government and retaining employees for the long term. Members of this oldest generation are also more apt to mention having a belief in the products and services produced by their organization.
Gen Xers, displaying their community-minded nature, indicate that other members of their generation would be attracted to their organization by emphasizing the organization’s positive reputation in the community. New to the work world and ambitious, millennials advise attracting other young employees by emphasizing opportunities for upward mobility and visibility to showcase skills.
Other organizational characteristics that respondents cited as being worth emphasizing in write-in comments included competitive pay, benefits that address student loan debt, work-life balance and job security.
The greatest proportion of government staffers, 4 out of 10, reported a preference for flexible working hours (e.g., setting their own schedule, compressed workweek). Baby boomers expressed the strongest preference for this. On the other hand, millennials are much more inclined to find regular hours like 8 am to 5 pm with options for occasional telework and flextime appealing.
In open-ended responses, other types of work scheduling mentioned as being appealing were shift work, 12-hour shifts scheduled with long or alternate weekends, 24 on/48 or 72 off, four 10-hour days, 48 hours on and 96 hours off, and flexible work locations.