As BYU students graduate and move into the workforce, they are among a population of millennials that expects more benefits than companies offered even a few years ago. Not only have the types of jobs changed with advances in technology and innovation, but what millennials look for in jobs has also shifted.
Though traditional benefits include health insurance, retirement plans and life insurance, the rising generation is expecting more personalized perks when searching for a job.
Employers offer these benefits not only to attract potential employees to their companies but to retain workers and use their strengths effectively.
“Smart business leaders recognize one of their most valuable assets is their employees,” said Pat Bluth, former director of human resource operations for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. “Many companies don’t see that and especially don’t act like employees are important to their business. Good leaders know what it takes to motivate and energize employees so they will perform well.”
According to Glassdoor, employers must understand that much of what motivates the millennial generation in looking for a job is work culture and opportunities for growth.
Though some millennials are still in school, Glassdoor says employers can expect that by 2025 millennials will make up the majority of their workforce. This means benefits not only need to fulfill traditional expectations, but benefits must contribute to a company culture and environment.
Statistics and information for infographic from Glassdoor.
Nu Skin’s organizational development program director Andrea Christensen said the company has recently added an in-house gym to keep up with business trends that offer more personal benefits. The company also hopes to encourage a culture of health with programs such as weight management, balanced diets and exercise. Another trend Nu Skin has followed is providing employees with financial training to prepare them for the future and give them opportunity for personal development.
In examining the movement in employer benefit trends, Caleb Wilkins, vice president of sales at Tesani Companies, a holding company that builds businesses from the ground up, said that while some traditional benefits remain more constant, the greatest change he has observed in benefits is a shift from universality as millennials come into the job market.
“The general trend in benefits is to move away from cookie cutter to more personalized benefits,” Wilkins said. “That’s really hard to execute, especially at scale, but I think Tesani has done a great job on how to build a foundation that is based on people individually rather than just the aggregate group. It’s cheaper to pay for the aggregate group — put everyone in a big insurance pool, find the cheapest one for the company — but the employees suffer.”
According to a Business News Daily article, another personalized benefit millennials are seeking is freedom from rigid schedules.
Giving young professionals flexibility is vital in retaining employees who tend to stay at companies for only a short time. Statistics from a Pay Scale and Millennial Branding Study show that while 41 percent of baby boomers think workers should stay at a job for at least five years before looking for a new job, only 13 percent of millennials agree.
“Individual values have changed what’s important in life. We don’t see a generation of potential employees looking to stay at the same company for their career, but (a generation) looking to work somewhere they can have fun, move up the ladder quickly, learn and move on to the next experience. So as a company, I need to offer elements that will support these values,” said Sarah Tuddenham, former human resource generalist for WesTech Engineering.
Millennials anticipating to learn and rise through the company hierarchy expect mentors and leaders who will be more than bosses to them. Travis Hansen, CEO of Tesani Companies, said he sees business leaders as a vital benefit millennials are looking for above and beyond more traditional benefits.
“I think benefits are going to change. I think culture will consistently change and companies will change. I think millennials will push change because there’s no reason they should not be happy with their current status,” Hansen said. “They should push and go for better, and then they should expect more from their leaders. They should expect them to be advisers and mentors and to know them on a personal level. You should never look for a job, you should look for a leader that will care for you and will genuinely help you to move forward.”