February 22, 2016

We live in fascinating times!  Long gone are the days when individuals have only one employer.  The median number of years wage and salary workers had been with their current employer was 4.6 years in January 2014, unchanged from January 2012.  This is according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. For women, the median tenure in January 2014 was 4.5 years, unchanged from January 2012. Among men, thirty percent (30%) of wage and salary workers had ten (10) years or more tenure with their current employer, compared with twenty-eight (28%) percent for women.  Median employee tenure was generally higher among older workers than younger ones. For example, the median tenure of workers ages fifty-five (55) to sixty-four (64), (10.4 years) was more than three times that of workers ages twenty-five (25) to thirty-four (34) years (3.0 years).  A larger proportion of older workers than younger workers had ten (10) years or more tenure.  Among workers ages sixty (60) to sixty-four (64), fifty-eight (58%) percent were employed for at least ten (10) years with their current employer in January 2014, compared with only twelve (12%) percent of those ages thirty (30) to thirty-four (34).

We are getting older and as aging employees retire, CEOs, presidents and human resource managers must look to younger individuals to fill the vacant positions.  This brings on fascinating challenges that certainly must be met.  Just what are the TOP TALENT TRENDS?  Let’s take a look.

  • INTERNET OF THINGS (IOT)— There is absolutely no doubt about it, IoT is the next technology mega-trend affecting the entire business spectrum. IoT is a network of physical objects or “things” embedded with electronics to collect and exchange data.  All sorts of data.  We see more and more “things” being connected to the internet each day. Every design manager recognizes this fact.  Companies are racing to make this happen.   Workers will have to develop new skills to meet the challenges of this environment.  People who know how to write code as well as hardware specialists will have to get on board for this revolution in products. Its coming and in many cases, already here.
  • THE BOOMERANG EMPLOYEE—An employee who leaves your company and then returns at a later time is called a boomerang employee. There, of course, reasons why an employee leaves; i.e. additional education, bad chemistry between manager and employee, great opportunities elsewhere, etc.  Seventy-six percent (76%) of employers say they are more accepting to rehire an employee is that employee did not create real issues during his original time with the company.   Rehiring a former employee can make sense.  They are familiar with company culture, may not require much training, and bring with them new perspectives.
  • GENERATION “Z” ENTERING THE WORKFORCE—Generation “Z” is the generation born between 1994 and 2004. According to Forbes, in 2015 Generation Z made up twenty-five percent (25%) of the U.S. population, making them a larger cohort than the baby boomersor millennials.  Frank N. Magid Associates estimates that in the United States, fifty-five percent (55%) of Generation Z are Caucasian, twenty-four percent (24%) are Hispanic, fourteen percent (14%) are African-American, four percent (4%) are Asian, and four percent (4%) are multiracial or other.

Non-traditional households are one of the most prominent features associated with Generation Z’s familial culture. In the 2010s, fewer women are having children (around 80 percent of those of childbearing age, against 90 percent in the 1970s), and those who do have fewer children at a later age.   Marriage rates have fallen as well as divorce rates, which are still relatively high. According to the U.S. census of 2010, both women and men get married at a later age– women’s first marriage averaging to the age of twenty-six (26) and men’s to the age of twenty-nine (29). This is due to the popular idea of becoming financially and emotionally independent before beginning a life with a significant other or children. Multiracial families have also become very prevalent.  In the U.S. census of 2001, 6.8% of people under the age of eighteen (18) claimed to be more than one race.  In addition to an increase in multiracial families, there are more same-sex marriages and families in communities across the country.  This is GEN “Z” and they are looking for employment.

  • HYBRID TALENT DEMAND—I think this is a big one. Hybrid jobs are the future of jobs.  Andy Holt, the past president of the University of Tennessee told the graduating class: “Know something about everything and everything about something”.  This in a nutshell is hybrid knowledge.  A hybrid employee is considered both a generalist and a specialist.  With a hybrid employee, employers are basically getting two people for the price of one.
  • INDUSTRY GROWTH CREATING NEED FOR FLEXIBLE SKILLS DEVELOPMENT—Accelerated growth produces the great need for an employee to be flexible relative to needed training and on-the-floor-experience. If an employee is not willing to learn, thus retrain—don’t hire him or her.
  • LONGER HIRING PROCESS CONTINUES—The time to fill a given job is lengthening. In April of 2015, the average job was vacant for 27.3 days before being filled.  This nearly doubles the 15.3 days it took prior to 2009. Better hires come out of the process but it does take time—much more time.
  • OFFICE DESIGN IS BEING USED TO ATTRACT TALENT—I find this one to be fascinating. Studies have shown that by transforming the look of the workplace, companies can create a more effective and productive space for their workers. For that reason, many companies are focusing on redesigning their office environment as a key aspect of attracting and retaining the best talent.  Health and safety are no longer considered adequate to attract employees.  They go for ambience also.
  • MORE WORKFORCE FLEXIBILITY—With the great rise of telecommuting, globalization and new technology, workers are demanding more flexibility. It definitely has not yet been determined as to where employers draw the line and I am positive this varies from company to company. With GEN Z, companies will have to bend with the winds of change and those changes are coming.

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