Office jobs are becoming a rarity for young adults these days. Improved technology and the snowball effect of the COVID-19 quarantine have many applicants looking for jobs away from a desk.
Here’s what to know about attracting young applicants to an office job.
Gen Z Employment Trends
Generation Z is now graduating and ready to enter the workforce. However, new types of careers and their life experiences influence where they send their resumes.
In reality, younger — and some older — workers are leaning toward unconventional careers, such as content creation and independent contracting. Gen Z switches jobs more than previous generations. This is partly due to the forced transition many companies faced during the pandemic, giving employees more time to be entrepreneurial and advocate for themselves. Others realized they came into the workforce when remote work was the norm and hesitated to return.
Around half of the generation seeking employment doesn’t want to work in an office, while the other half is open to the idea. The truth is that standard offices with strict schedules and cubicles are becoming a thing of the past, and amenities and other attractive perks create happier and healthier employees.
How can an office attract young employees when so many options are available? Provide the right amenities. Here’s what to consider.
Mental Health Amenities
One of the reasons traditional office jobs are fading is because of the detrimental effects they can have on mental health. An employer can help create a better environment for everyone with the right care.
Many offices and cubicles lack windows, which prevents employees from getting natural light throughout the day. Sunlight regulates mood, boost energy and helps people focus throughout the day.
The sun also gives employees a dose of vitamin D, which is essential for staying healthy. Artificial light can be overwhelming, contribute to eye strain and make employees feel claustrophobic.
Open Floor Plan
Designers made cubicles to provide personal spaces for employees to focus on their work. However, they can also create a sense of isolation that, combined with only having a few hours at home, can increase depression and anxiety symptoms.
Taking down the walls and making an office an open space encourages employees to socialize with one another and feel more comfortable. Keeping desks separate is still a good idea since many workers value privacy, but an open floor plan gives teams the best of both worlds.
Break rooms aren’t anything new, but many can improve. Instead of plain spaces with a small kitchen and metal tables, try making this area a place for relaxation and rejuvenation. Dimmable lights, couches and loungers, nap pods and coffee bars are all great options for treating employees.
Relaxing spaces can help calm the mind and body and let employees escape the workday’s stressors. Plants and greenery can purify the air and help employees connect to natural elements, grounding them and letting them reset for the rest of their office hours.
Offices can unintentionally encourage employees to have sedentary lifestyles. Make the workplace more enjoyable and productive by encouraging physical activity at work.
Having adjustable-height desks allows employees to sit or stand during the day. Provide under-desk treadmills and ellipticals to help keep spirits and step counts up throughout the day.
Providing these types of desks gives people the power to choose their activity level in a classic office setup.
Sports can be a great bonding opportunity for each team, and an easy way to incorporate them is through a pickleball court.
Use any 34-by-64-foot indoor or outdoor area for a standard-size pickleball court. It’s an easy sport to learn and is great for workers of all generations. Arrange games and leave the court open for employees to hit balls during their break. Companies may be surprised at the number of people who show interest.
Just as some people have a home gym, leaders can create an office gym. Get some cardio equipment, weights and a water cooler to provide a place for employees to work out together.
Fitness is important to many young adults, as is having the option for a quick and easy workout. A workplace with a built-in free gym membership allows everyone to quickly and efficiently get moving. For a large staff and a good amount of space, consider offering fitness classes or group workouts so employees can get to know each other and bond over shared hobbies.
Providing general amenities to employees is necessary, but companies can attract more Gen Z members by customizing perks. Offering personalized items that cater to people’s needs is an appealing way for companies to show they care.
Gone are the days when vending machines seemed like a perk. Investing in fresh, tasty snacks can appeal to younger employees. Fruit, vegetables and cheese give people an appreciated break from work pressures. Personalize them by considering allergies and dietary preferences in the selection.
One of the appeals of working from home is the ability to grab a snack whenever. Employers can compete with this ideal by providing a delicious spread.
Ergonomic Desk Equipment
Ergonomics is necessary for all employees, but catering to individual needs makes a company more appealing.
Everyone has different heights, weights and comfort levels. Adjustable equipment and various types of ergonomic seating, keyboards and monitors let workers set up their healthiest space. Employers can attract young professionals who are aware of posture and joint support issues.
Large offices can fall into the pattern of grouping team members together rather than touting the individual accomplishments of everyone.
Print their names on shirts or hats, give them a personalized nameplate, and acknowledge individual accomplishments in emails and public newsletters. Having something with their name on it shows that the employer sees each individual, not just another worker. They also help employees connect with the workplace and feel invested in the company.
Appealing to Gen Z
Generation Z is entering the workforce differently than any previous generation. With so many jobs and schedule types available, getting young people to accept an office job takes a lot of work. Employers can prevent hesitation by providing various benefits to their workers, acknowledging the needs of each individual and showing how much they value everyone.