Generation Z — or individuals born between 1995 and 2015 — are beginning to enter the workforce, and research predicts they could comprise over a third of it (36%) by the end of 2020. As employers ready themselves for the next generation of talent, it’s important to understand what, exactly, these individuals value and look for in workplaces. Fairygodboss surveyed 400 women between the ages of 18 and 22 to learn more about what female Gen Z’ers expect of their employers and their careers.
From the results, we found the following:
Job-hopping has been an increasingly popular trend among millennial employees, and our survey predicts that Gen Z workers may follow suit. Eighty percent of respondents reported leaving or planning to leave their first full-time job before reaching four years at the company. And many Gen Z’ers endorse job hopping even more frequently, with nearly a quarter staying or planning to stay in their first full-time job for less than a year — meaning they’re already halfway out the door by the time they start with a company.
Respondents placed more importance on immediate benefits, like vacation policies and insurance, compared to long-term benefits like retirement savings, 401(k) plans, fertility benefits and tuition reimbursement. Gen Z’ers are also more likely to prize individual benefits over family ones. For example, although retirement savings plans ranked lower than insurance and vacation policies, around half of respondents still said this benefit was important. Meanwhile, the perceived importance of family-related benefits, like paid parental leave, adoption assistance and fertility benefits, ranked last.
Despite public statements about Gen Z’s interest in companies' missions and values, respondents still chose a high salary over a mission they believed in. When asked what was the one thing they wanted most from their first full-time job, over half of respondents chose a high salary. Similarly, the most important quality they reported looking for in companies — more than great benefits and a strong leadership team — is that it pays well. Research has shown that when individuals stay in their jobs for too long, they may actually lose money compared to if they changed jobs. So the fact that Gen Z highly values a good salary may explain why they plan to leave their jobs every few years.
However, that’s not to suggest that values don’t matter at all. Respondents cared that a company demonstrates a clear social responsibility almost three times more than they cared about how well-known or popular the company is.
Over 70% of respondents said they want to have the option to work remotely or have a flexible schedule and chose this option as one of the most important company perks to them. In addition, we asked respondents what office-specific perks they’d want, and one of the top choices was fun office decor (36%). These women want to have the ability to work on their own schedules, as well as in an environment they enjoy and feel comfortable in.
Over one third of respondents reported that they edit their social media accounts or make them private when applying for jobs and internships, and 10% said they don’t use any social media.
Additionally, Gen Z women overwhelmingly rely on digital sources like a company’s website (69%), social media (49%) and company review websites (44%) as their main methods of researching different employers.