Businessolver Blog

Understanding the Multigenerational Workforce

Understanding the Multigenerational Workforce
Posted on Wednesday, June 10, 2015 by Natalie McLinden

There’s been a lot of buzz lately about the mutigenerational workforce that is at play in many organizations today. Clearly, the days of treating everyone the same are gone–but what is all the buzz about and how does it play into benefits? What can today’s HR leaders do to engage all generations effectively?


One of the biggest impacts of the generations is the way in which they communicate. It’s important to support a spectrum of users – from those who don’t trust e-mail and prefer phone support (think retirees), to those who only use e-mail and need to have documented confirmation of everything (think boomers), to those accustom to formality in corporate communications (older gen x’ers and boomers), to those who prefer informal, short action items (think young gen x’ers and millennials). Trying to manage all of those preferences can be challenging. Benefit news can be big news for an organization. You don’t want anyone to miss out on what you are trying to convey. Does it make the most sense to offer a Town Hall Meeting? Or use an internal social media tool? Or posters in the bathroom? The answer might be ‘all of the above’ to ensure that your message is heard and digested.

View of Benefits

Another interesting impact of the multigenerational workforce is the attitude towards benefits and how they play a role in the attraction and retention of talent. A wise employer will be thoughtful about healthcare costs, employer contributions, and wellness initiatives when considering the most effective options to put before their employee base. In addition to the perceived value of benefits, which varies by generation, you also have to factor in life stage considerations – while one group might care more about long-term care, another might be more focused on preventative care or maternity benefits.

Choosing a Benefits Administration Partner

The important thing to consider when choosing a benefits administration partner is finding someone who is flexible with a number of communication options and a platform that can handle a variety of plan rules based on audience. Rigidity or expensive customizations have no place in a world where our employees range from those who remember World War II to those who enjoyed World War Z. A configurable platform with a vendor that has a wealth of HR experience will set you on a path to success for the current generations – and whatever may come with the next one.
It’s not easy to balance the needs of multigenerational workers, but understanding and planning can help you make the most impact. We invite you to learn more about generational differences from Cam Marston, generation insight expert, at our Chicago Vision 20/15 Tour June 26th. Click below to learn more and register!