Generation Z set to clash with older workers over communication differences

Generation Z, those currently aged 19 years and younger, are about to pose major challenges for businesses as they enter the workplace, according to new research.

The study, commissioned by Ricoh, found that Generation Z will become frustrated far more easily than older workers when they enter the workplace.

Nearly half (46%) said they would be irritated by a lack of communication from colleagues, compared to only one in four (23%) of other generations.

>See also: Competitive, impatient and narcissistic: Is your workplace ready for Generation Z?

When considering ways of working, 40% of Generation Z would find a “lack of flexibility in hours” a serious frustration with their job – compared with just 13% of Baby Boomers, 13% of Generation X and 21% of Millennials.

Meanwhile, nearly a third (30%) of Generation Z would be frustrated by a lack of information sharing, and a similar figure (28%) by a lack of responsibility.

More than double the number of Generation Z are attracted to a company that enables them to feel like they are making a difference to the world – 42% compared with 15% of Baby Boomers, 18% of Gen X and 15% of Millennials.

And almost five times as many Gen Z respondents are attracted to companies that offer technology to enable people to work more efficiently (29%) than those from the older generations (6%).

“Generation Z has justifiably high expectations from their employers because, as technology evolves, so should their ability to work anywhere using the device most comfortable to them,” said Phil Keoghan, CEO at Ricoh UK and Ireland.

“Businesses of all sizes should be exploring opportunities to adopt new ways of working – creating an environment in which employees can flourish.”

>See also: How to motivate and engage Generation Z

The research also revealed that Generation Z have high expectations of their own positive impact on the workplace. Most of those surveyed said they will bring exceptional technology skills (72%), new ideas and fresh thinking (63%), and new ways of working (55%).

“While tomorrow’s young workers prepare themselves to enter the world of work – helping businesses become more agile and digitally savvy – working environments can often be restrictive,” Keoghan added. “Given their desire for constant innovation, instant communication and open collaboration, Gen Z will pose a big challenge for businesses.”

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Ben Rossi

Ben was Vitesse Media's editorial director, leading content creation and editorial strategy across all Vitesse products, including its market-leading B2B and consumer magazines, websites, research and...

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