This informal CPD article Workplace collaboration, barriers and the generational divide: how Gen Z are driving tech adoption was provided by Gamma Business Communications, a leading supplier of Unified Communications as a Service (UCaaS) in the UK, German, Spanish and Benelux business markets.
The way we work has drastically changed. While calling this new reality a ‘new normal’ is certainly a bit of a cliché, we cannot ignore how the pandemic acted as a catalyst for change in our personal and working lives. Flexible or hybrid working, once an added benefit, has now become expected by existing and potential employees. In particular, the differing priorities of the younger workforce generation are shaping the way companies approach new technology, benefits and processes.
For business leaders, this poses new challenges to ensure all are satisfied, productive and collaborative – regardless of location. However, this shift also poses new opportunities to create a workplace where any barriers to positive behavioural changes are removed and where the adoption of new technology is fostered and encouraged.
Reshaping the future of work: Gen Z
Recent global challenges have certainly put more focus on maintaining mental health. Amongst all, there’s one group of workers who has really taken the concept of work-life balance to new highs: Gen Z. According to recent reports, Gen Z will make up 27% of the workforce by 20251 – bringing with them fresh perspectives on values and ways of working. For them, work is what you do, not where you do it. More evidently than other generations, Gen Z are looking for a sense of purpose and achievement – founding their career choices on purpose and principles, as well as work-life balance.
As the first digital native generation, Gen Z are thrilled by the prospect of flexible working options. Before the pandemic, 1 out of 67 jobs on LinkedIn offered the option to work remotely2, with that figure dropping to 1 in 7 by the start of 2022.
In this light, business leaders must re-evaluate the tools and solutions they have in place to cater for the needs of this new group of workers. While established employees might struggle to adapt to new technologies and might be more resistant to change, Gen Z recognise the importance of technology to encourage seamless collaboration and welcome new solutions that can help them establish better working relationships and better work-life balance.
A good example? Microsoft’s 2022 Work Trend Index highlights how receptive the younger generations are to VR tech, with 51% of Gen Z respondents open to the idea of the Metaverse at work.