The retail world has faced significant challenges recently, including supply chain disruptions, political instability, inflation, the need to adapt to new consumer habits, and the “Great Resignation”. Retailers have already identified the staffing problem as one of their biggest challenges, and with more than 4 million people having resigned and not planning to return anytime soon due to burnout and stress, more than 10 million positions remain vacant in the U.S. alone.
At the same time, another relevant factor enters the picture. While baby boomers are on their way out, Millennials and Generation Z are becoming increasingly relevant in the retail world as both consumers and employees, making up nearly 50% of the full-time workforce in the United States.
Understanding the priorities and needs of the new generations is critical to addressing changes in the workforce. According to the EY 2021 Work Reimagined Employee Survey, for Millennials and Generation Z, the most valued aspect of an employer is their concern for their well-being, physical and mental health. They also expect ethical leadership and a diverse and inclusive organization. They are looking for personalized training and learning opportunities as part of their professional development, where they can feel a meaningful connection to their team and the company.
To address this situation and increase recruitment and retention, retailers must adopt new strategies and technologies, especially considering that 63% of Millennials and Generation Z believe using technology platforms could help the company improve its training process, career development, and internal communication.
The latter is one of the most powerful tools within the company, as it gives a voice to the organization and actively demonstrates its values and culture. Here are three key points to remember when connecting with employees, especially the new generations.
- Reach all staff: internal communication should reach all employees to keep the organization fully connected and aligned. In a digitalized world like the one we live in, this becomes especially complex for industries such as retail, where a large part of the staff works outside an office without access to a computer. Communications must be adapted to different channels to maximize their reach. Mobile applications on smartphones are becoming strongly attractive, considering their 98% penetration among Millennials and Generation Z.
- User-friendly: Once you have ensured that all staff have access, ensuring the content is user-friendly is important. If staff cannot access the selected platform, if the process to find the release is cumbersome, or if there is no clarity on what to do with the new information, all efforts will be in vain.
Although new generations have a remarkable ability to use technology and adopt new platforms with ease, it is important to pay attention to the user experience (UX) and user interface (UI).
Concern for usability is important for the workforce and those in charge of generating communications. The communication tool must be simple and intuitive for both sides.
- Meaningful content: It is clear that generic content does not work for the new generations. Millennials and Generation Z expect personalized and meaningful content that contributes to their professional growth. This can be through different types of communication, such as news, training, tutorials, public recognition, onboarding, goal setting, among others. Regardless of the content, it must be relevant to the person, their responsibilities, and job projection. Organizations must rethink how to individualize internal communication to avoid being seen as spam and validate themselves as a source of compelling and high-value content for employees.
When an organization has a well-oiled internal communication process, it ensures that its staff is connected and aligned with the company’s values, objectives, and mission. Access to relevant information and valuable content provides new tools to the team, who feel more empowered to perform their duties and contribute to the business’s success.
At FrogmiⓇ, we know that internal communication is a powerful tool and that adopting new technologies will be vital in attracting and motivating new generations of workers. That is why we have developed an Internal Communication solution that allows you to generate one-to-one communications, enabling the delivery of information automatically but personalized simultaneously, supporting your employees’ integration, sense of belonging, and commitment.