It is always an interesting discussion about designing reward specific to the millennial workforce. While most researchers agree there are differences in values, most of what is core to each generation is ultimately quite similar. A 20-year gap between the oldest and youngest millennial also means there is significant diversity in the needs and wants of just one generation.
The answer, we believe lies in not grouping employees together but helping managers understand what rewards drive individuals. These include those sought-after intangibles like career development and recognition as well as the tangibles like pay and benefits.
Reward of the future is not solely in the design of incentive and recognition schemes but largely in the ability to equip managers to have at their disposal enough variety to give their people a unique experience. That includes the millennials. What better experience for an individual – would you want a gold pen or would you like to exchange that for a cot because you are about to have your first child?
In a world where every business strives towards an individualized and seamless customer experience, our people are asking for the same consideration at work. Flexibility in how they work, flexibility in the way they are rewarded and recognized and ultimately the flexibility to change their minds as they progress through the various stages of their lives.
It would be virtually impossible for HR to take ownership of knowing what each individual’s aspirations at any given point in time, but managers have the best shot to keep on top of it. Reward needs to heavily invest in Manager capability to discuss employee goals, aspirations and needs to ensure these can be met, managed and exceeded using the reward and recognition tools available to them. Even the most beautifully designed STI or recognition plan has little or no impact if a manager can’t explain the why.
I would like to thank Kathryn Greene for her contributions to this article and her leadership of Remnet into the an era of disruption.