Gen Z demand flexible, digital-led work environment

September 29, 2022 | 15:00
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People under 25 are more likely to change their jobs, have higher expectations of their employers, and demand more flexibility, according to recent surveys.

An Anphabe survey reported in June stated that 62 per cent of Generation Z in Vietnam switch jobs within the first year, which poses difficult problems for recruiters.

Gen Z demand flexible, digital-led work environment
Gen Z demand flexible, digital-led work environment - illustration photo /

Phuong Thanh, 22, a finance and accounting graduate, has changed her job three times since she finished university a little over a year ago. Thanh is typical of her generation (employees born between 1997-2012) in terms of her thinking and job requirements.

She quit her first job because she could not adapt to the company culture. Working as an accountant at a second company, she quit after finishing her probation period as she felt pressured to work traditional hours. The graduate is currently a freelancer with the same income as when she worked at the office but with more freedom.

“I feel satisfied with my current choice,” Thanh said. “Many young people around me have also given up office jobs to switch to part-time or freelance work. Our way of working is different from previous generations.”

Nguyen Thi Lan Huong, director of GapoWork, said that younger workers have increasingly strict requirements for employers. Aside from salary, remuneration, and working environment, Generation Z prefer high-tech companies as they were born and grew up in the technology boom,

“We can see the difference clearly,” Huong said. “My generation easily adapts and integrates into the existing conditions of the business, but Gen Z is more demanding.”

According to Do Danh Thanh, deputy general director of Digital Transformation and IT Strategy at Deloitte Vietnam, the younger generation like to work in a virtual reality environment, so businesses should build digital workplaces to help improve the employee experience and attract and retain talent.

“Gen Z will care about the company with the environment, working tools that meet their needs. They will pay less attention to traditional work modes with 8-9 hour workdays at the office,” said Deloitte’s Thanh.

Since the pandemic, favoured work patterns have changed, even for non-Gen Z workers, with 89 per cent of employees in Vietnam saying the ability to work from anywhere has made them happier and 76 per cent saying they want a combination of a remote and in-office hybrid working model in the future, according to a survey in May of over 1,000 people in Vietnam by IT conglomerate Cisco.

The change in interests and working habits has led to a shift in human resource needs between industries. Businesses operating in fields related to technology, retail, or environments with flexible working hours have become more attractive than the remaining traditional companies.

In just half a year, Mobile World was able to recruit more than 8,000 employees, not to mention thousands of freelancers, as it is seen as a modern, dynamic company. As of June, the number of its employees reached 78,600 and continues to grow.

FPT is an enterprise with a solid rate of staff expansion and a working environment appreciated by young workers for its dynamism, creativity, and flexibility. The number of FPT employees has increased by 2,100 in the last six months, bringing the total number of employees to over 39,000.

In contrast to industries with flexible working conditions, which the younger generation prefers, labour-intensive sectors such as textiles and garments, construction, and banking saw a decline in employee numbers, with young people in particular not keen to join them.

“These are businesses that are forced to give employees annual leave of 3-4 days per month, or just wait to employ people when they receive orders, and then on the regional minimum wage,” said Pham Xuan Hong, chairman of the Ho Chi Minh City Association of Garments, Textiles, Embroidery, and Knitting.

According to the General Statistics Office, by 2025, Gen Z is expected to take up 30 per cent of Vietnam’s workforce.

Gen Z – the breakthrough generation or the disruptors? Gen Z – the breakthrough generation or the disruptors?

At the recent launch of the Top 50 Best Employers of Choice by Vietnam Students 2020, Anphabe provided exclusive talent insights into Gen Z, the next generation of workers.

Modernising HR approaches to anticipate Gen Z wave entering the workplace Modernising HR approaches to anticipate Gen Z wave entering the workplace

Human resources management has not only witnessed a disturbance in working methods caused by COVID-19 but also confronted a strong generational transition as Gen Z are making up a third of the workforce, according to the data from the General Statistics Office. This generation loves experiences and freedom, while requiring a certain amount of recognition. Therefore, human resources managers need to be prepared to "steer the ship" smoothly in the face of the Gen Z “breeze”.

By Thai An

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