Generation ‘Y’ – How to Retain them?

“Now, as [these young people] go in search of jobs, they have different priorities. They care less about salaries, and more about flexible working, travel and a better work-life balance,” stated an article in the Observer earlier this year.

Here is a group of people, aged between 18 and 28, for whom money and status are not high on the agenda: who want freedom at work, international travel, the chance to take sabbaticals and to work for a good employer brand.


The HR dimension

How should HR professionals adapt their recruitment and retention strategies to better reflect the demands of Generation Y?

Too often the ‘personnel’ approach to young people is the equivalent of watching your dad dancing at a wedding – uncomfortable viewing, according to Deb Clarke, joint director of HR for Tower Hamlets Council and primary care trust.

“HR is trying to establish a virtuous circle where we employ and engage with young people so they can show us how better to employ and engage with young people,” she says.

Warner adds that the results should send warning signals to employers about whether their benefit packages are fit for purpose.

“The message I receive from my staff is that they don’t mind working hard if the rewards are commensurate with their efforts. Also they want to see their benefits package flexing as they go through different stages of their lives,” he explains.


Richard Reid is the founder of Pinnacle Proactive, Specialising in theEmployee Assistance ProgramStress ManagementStaff Retention & Absenteeism. Take a Proactive Approach to Growing Your Organisation & its People. For more info visit



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