Welcoming the Future of Work with Gen Z

January 30, 2023 HR Insight
Welcoming the Future of Work with Gen Z


Generation change is coming!

In 2023, not only do we need to keep an eye on technology which will play a large role in our work, but also to keep track of ‘Gen Z’, the new generation who was born and grew up with technology that will change the way we work in several aspects and will become a big challenge that HR and organizations have to confront with.

If we define Gen Z as those who were born between 1996 - 2010 or are aged between 13-27, it means that nearly half of Gen Z (40%) will be in the labor market this year and will account for one fourth of the Thai job market in the next 5 years. In other words, the coming years will be the time when the new generation truly steps out into the business world.

This is why organizations must realize an importance of this young generation. Instead of seeing them as ‘a problem’ to handle, organizations should treat them as ‘an opportunity’ for the company to get new fresh ideas or skills that can be mixed or shared with employees from other generations, in order to build the strengths and competitive advantages, and help business to easily transform into a more digital world. Understanding them and adjusting corporate culture, renumeration, or even structures to embrace these Gen Z will help leverage the organization’s employer branding to the next level, ready to attract the young talents to join the company.

Characteristics of Gen Z

Six notable characteristics are found in Gen Z, i.e.,
1) High creativity: they are highly creative and energetic when it comes to taking action;
2) Impactful: Gen Z has a desire to take part in creating an impact in their organization and the society;
3) Tech-savvy: this young generation is capable of adapting to the new technology rapidly since they were born and grew up in the digital world;
4) Mobility: they are flexible workers and good at working with different types of people;
5) Entrepreneurship: these Zoomers think like business owners: they constantly look for opportunities, dare to take risks, aspire for quick success, and dream of having their own business;
6) Self-development: Gen Z likes to learn and develop themselves continuously.

Nevertheless, the above characteristics are a sum of how we view Gen Z in an overall picture. At the end of the day, Gen Z is still considered the generation with highest individuality (reference: The New York Times). Besides, no matter which generation we look at, each person has his own unique characteristics. Thus, HR should try to get to know Gen Z as individuals both during the job interview and after they are hired.

Which types of companies are right for Gen Z?

Each member of Gen Z prioritizes things in life differently. For this reason, we will mention the factors that tend to be desirable for most of them, and their needs may be similar or different from those of other generations.

1.Good renumeration

Due to social problems and economic fluctuation on a global scale, remuneration has become the factor that a large number of Gen Z prioritize. According to Deloitte’s survey results overseas, it has been discovered that almost one third of Gen Z is worried about costs of living the most. Such finding is not surprising as a survey result in the US has also revealed that the purchasing power of this generation is 86% lower than that of baby boomers at the same age. Good salary and welfare, therefore, are major factors which have an influence on Gen Z’s job selection decision.


This factor must come hand-in-hand with good compensation because, no matter how attractive the renumeration is, it is hard for companies to appeal to Gen Z if they offer zero flexibility. In this context, flexibility should be in terms of both place and time. Work From Anywhere policy should also include working from a cafe, by the beach, or on the mountain, and not limited to just at ‘home.’ In the same manner, working hours should not be fixed at 9 am to 5 pm. As long as the staff can communicate with their team, work efficiently, and get the job successfully done, flexible working schedule should be acceptable. If any company would like to highlight this factor as a unique selling point, try to adapt and apply the “four-day workweek” policy which are already in practice in some countries. This could be another way to attract the new generation.

3.Opportunities to acquire new skills and grow

This generation often asks themselves what they have learned from their work. In their point of view, a good job is the one that allows them to learn and grow. This desire to keep developing themselves may be attributable to their pressure to compete with other people in the same generation, or to get themselves prepared for job positions that will change in the future. Hence, whenever their job or organization no longer encourages skill development, there is a good chance that they may start looking for a new one.

As an HR, showcasing the corporate culture that encourages learning can be done at various stages, from the interview to the actual work period, e.g., by conducting a survey to learn about the staff’s desire to develop their skills constantly, organizing online and/ or onsite trainings based on each employee’s preference, focusing on the development of skills that the staff can build on in order to make progress at work, as well as discussing with them about their career path. All these activities should be carried out by companies and supervisors as they can help alleviate issues like quiet quitting or lack of enthusiasm at work which cause people to become bored and finally decide to quit.

In terms of career advancement, HR and supervisors should discuss about this with Gen-Z staff since the first day at work. Remember that, for these Zoomers who are still trying to discover themselves, sometimes the opportunity to grow is not only limited to getting promoted to a higher level, but it can also mean a chance to take a different position or move to another department.

4.Corporate culture which matches their beliefs

Gen Z is the first generation that expresses their desire to see their organization take part in social and environmental changes; something which has never been so evident in any other generation. Therefore, good corporate culture will become a major strength that makes a company a preferred choice for candidates.

Regarding social change, the topics that this generation is particularly interested in are diversity, equality, and inclusion. They would like to work in a  company that embraces the differences of people in terms of gender, race, culture, belief, etc. As an HR or organization leader, showing an attention to these issues is necessary and can be done in several ways. One good example is the recruiting process where hiring managers are free of bias against candidates with different political opinions, not rushing to judge their abilities from university grades, not judging by look, nor discriminating people with disabilities. Most importantly, an awareness should be reflected in the company’s policies, e.g., an equal welfare for staff of all genders, an inclusive dress code policy in the workplace, privacy for staff, inclusive office design, and so on.

Techniques for recruiting Gen Z

1.Adjust job description to suit entry level

One of the problems which causes headaches for first jobbers of all generations is to find out that the job description of a position which should be for new graduates somehow specifies some qualifications that impede them from getting hired, for instance, a new-grad job post which requires 1-3 years of experience.

To solve this, HR and supervisors should review job descriptions of entry-level positions in their company and cut off some qualifications that do not suit new graduates or are unnecessary and keep only the key requirements for such jobs. If this can be done, not only will recent graduates have a better chance to apply for more jobs as it should be, but the company will also get a great opportunity to meet a large candidate pool full of new, young talents in the market, which is definitely a win-win situation.


“When ‘entry-level’ is synonymous with ‘opportunity for all',
good things can happen” - LinkedIn

2.Modify organizational structure to support gig workers

We may have heard of the term “gig economy” before since this trend is becoming increasingly popular, especially among Gen Z and Gen Y. Gig economy is an economic system which supports temporary employments. We call employees in this system “gig workers.”

Based on Adecco’s survey results, the increasing number of gig workers creates worries among full-time staff. It has been discovered that 61% of full-time workers are concerned that gig workers may make it more difficult for them to find a job. Still, from organizations’ perspective, this is a good opportunity for companies to have more choices in their employment, especially for some positions which are not super busy all the time but are still needed. Hiring gig workers to fill those positions might be a better choice since it helps save cost as companies do not have to pay salaries during the period without work. Besides, it gives companies greater flexibility and better work quality as they can hire various talents in the labor market with no strings attached.

3.Offer benefits that suit the needs of Gen Z

Improving remunerations, flexibility, career advancement, and corporate culture is one of the most vital things that companies should do in order to attract and retain the new generation. Also worth considering are other benefits which suit the needs and lifestyles of Gen-Z staff. These special benefits can be for their learning (scholarships, free online courses), their finance (provident fund, financial advisor for saving and investment), as well as their health and wellbeing (health insurance, fitness membership, free lunch, movie streaming service membership).

4.Communicate with Gen Z at the right place

Gen Z lives in the online world and uses social media as their sources of information in almost everything. Thus, it is important for organizations to know where to present themselves so that Gen Z will get to know and feel interested in joining them. To access Gen Z as much as possible, a few more things to consider are the channel of communication, the content, and the presentation which must be concise, precise, honest, and easy to understand. As an example, nowadays TikTok and YouTube are considered the social media that Gen Z heavily uses. So, a company can ask their staff from different departments to make a clip to review their work in one day so that Gen Z and other interested candidates can see an overall picture of how people work in this company. If what they see in the clip is actually what they are looking for, it should help to stimulate their interest to become part of the organization.

LinkedIn (1) (2) (3) / 
OEC News / กรุงเทพธุรกิจ / Deloitte / The Momentum / SD Pespectives / The Standard / Forbes / CGS

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