According to Adecco Staffing’s second annual Way to Work Generational Survey, a worrying 74 percent of millennial and Gen Z respondents claimed that they felt as though their colleges and universities did not fully prepare them for their post-grad careers. With the new workforce showing up underprepared, it’s time to practice workforce optimization from within your organization.
A recent survey with 536 C-Suite executives revealed that 41 percent of those executives believe critical thinking and/or problem solving are the toughest skills to recruit for. Although those seem like skills that cannot be taught, tech-savvy companies are accepting the challenge by developing problem solving and critical thinking simulations.
On-site training, such as onboarding techniques, webinars, and mentors, has also been proven to make a difference in workforce optimization. In fact, 48 percent of best-in-class companies studied in a recent guide to building a better workforce had successfully increased their training for critical skill areas. Some organizations even work directly with universities on programs designed to equip students with the skills they need for their role in that organization.
Employee replacement costs can range from 10 to 30 percent of the abandoned job’s annual salary, according to the Center for American Progress—keeping turnover rates low is a must. The Way to Work Survey found that 36 percent of students said their top priority for taking a job is the opportunity for growth within the organization. Providing opportunities to obtain small leadership roles—for instance, being in charge of a specific project that highlights their skills—is a simple way to begin guiding these employees towards growth.
Finally, it is important to clearly communicate expectations for employees’ day-to-day responsibilities, as well as overall performance—and criteria for praise and promotion as well. The new workforce is coming, and they may not be as prepared as previous generations. That’s why it is important to formalize a workforce optimization plan for your incoming employees.