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The New Workforce: Three Trends and Predictions About Generation Z in the Workplace

Updated: Oct 9, 2023

Group of young workers sitting in the conference room of an office.

Every generation to enter the workforce is wholly unique–molded by society, experiences, and preceding generations. So it is with Generation Z.

We’ve explored the characteristics, values, and motivators unique to this generation and delved into their educational preferences and drivers. We’ve also examined how this generation interacts with and what it expects from the modern workplace.

Now, let’s take a look at what’s trending among Gen Zs in the workplace, as well as investigate predictions for the future workplace.

Trending in the Workplace

Though only a small percent of Gen Zs are currently in the workforce, we’re already able to see certain workplace trends on the rise among younger Millennials and older Gen Zs. Here are three of the top trends, for starters.

1. Demise of traditional work hours

The 40-hour work week with its eight hour days has become a thing of the past–at least among Gen Zs. They prefer a more flexible schedule–one that allows for personal pursuits or multiple streams of revenue. In fact, Wonolo recently published data that shows ​many Gen Zs are transitioning into freelance work due to the flexibility and freedom it offers.

2. Lifestyle benefits

Trending predominantly in Millennial- and Gen Z-occupied workplaces are lifestyle benefits, like employees gym memberships, subscriptions, mental health resources, and paid time off. These benefits are highly sought by Gen Zs currently in the workforce–especially in a post-COVID world.

3. Unlimited paid time off

Speaking of time off, one new trend seen in companies including GrubHub, Roku, and GE is the option for unlimited paid time off. This ensures employees are responsible for getting their work requirements done, while allowing unlimited vacation time and work flexibility so fiercely craved by employees of all generations–especially Gen Zs..

Workplace predictions

Even armed with the latest research, polls, and studies, it’s still nearly impossible to accurately predict the future–especially the future needs and wishes of an entire generational population. This is especially true with Generation Z, as only a small portion of the Gen Z population is currently involved in or entering the workplace. As more Gen Zs enter the workforce, more trends will surface, as will speculations about Gen Z’s future in the workplace.

That being said, there are a few predictions we can make now based on observations of older Gen Zs in the workplace.

1. Increasing demand for freelance and remote work

The pandemic introduced a widespread need to work remotely. And, from what we’ve seen so far of older Gen Zs who are inclined to freelance and work remotely, this tendency to seek out freelance or remote work positions will continue among younger Gen Zs. That means organizations will need to continue to adapt to the demand to more permanent remote and hybrid work positions.

2. Staying up with technology advancements

We can also surmise that a generation as technologically dependent as Generation Z will expect organizations and employers to stay up-to-date with technological and social media-based advancements.

3. Changing workplace protocols

As a politically-active generation, Gen Z workers’ participation in the workforce will inevitably mean changes to workplace roles, environments, and even protocols to accommodate their demand for inclusivity and activism.

Interestingly, while these trends and predictions reflect the wants and expectations of older Gen Zs workers, the younger Gen Z population is showing a tendency towards a more conservative outlook than their older Gen Z peers. So, time will tell to what extent the greater Generation Z changes workplaces.

Whatever changes and trends do arise in the workplace, though, you can count on the Growth Group and our Gen Z Advisory Team to keep you up-to-date with the latest research and insights.

A Generation Z primer for employers

One last prediction to consider is this: those organizations that invest in understanding and adapting to the unique values and expectations of Gen Zs stand a greater chance of maintaining a competitive edge on attracting top Gen Z talent and in an evolving marketplace. Those that don’t, could be sidelined.

Our Generation Z: An Employer’s Primer is designed to help business leaders, like you, get to know this invaluable workforce resource better. What’s more, this primer is entirely on us.

Looking for more resources on Generation Z? Check out our Gen Z Video series.

© 2023 The Growth Group, LLC - All rights reserved.

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