We’ve been actively preparing for a great RIMS 2015! I’m excited to be speaking to the conference with one of our client partners on the changing needs of the workforce. We have had a great time preparing for our session, Faces in the crowd: Meeting the needs of an increasingly diverse workforce, scheduled for Tuesday morning.
I spend a lot of time working with our colleagues and listening to their perspectives as they navigate their work day. A few key things are changing for our organization, and I’m sure others, as we try to create a supported and engaged workforce.
- Technology: it rules the world! Our workforce is getting younger and they are used to getting everything right here and right now. Employers, including Sedgwick, have had to adapt our pace and forms of communication to allow us to meet their needs for here and now information.
- Time: It used to be seen as a badge of honor to work well into the night and on the weekends. No more! Our evolved culture wants to work hard, but also have the opportunity for flexibility and time in their life for what’s important to them – outside of their careers. We understand that appropriately managing flexibility will create a more engaged workforce. I write all of the time about how my mom is living down the street from our office in a nursing home. The ability to run and help her with lunch makes me a better colleague when I return to the office. The same holds true in maintaining balance for colleagues who want to make sure they are there for important events in their kids’ lives or who have hobbies that require them to leave on time. Balance makes a better workforce.
- Information: There is so much access to information now that it’s hard to know how and when it starts and stops. Our workforce demands information on a 24/7 basis. In order to meet their changing needs, information has to come in a variety of formats and be easy (and quick) to read and digest. Twitter allows for a lot of this and we use this routinely to communicate what’s new and next.
- Opportunity: Raising three older teenagers, I can personally attest to the fact that the millennials want and expect opportunity. Employers handle this in a variety of ways, but the most important part is to pay attention to it as a need and address it. At Sedgwick, we encourage experiential learning and are supportive of colleagues who want to get exposure to more so that they can do more. Paying attention to and encouraging horizontal growth keeps a diverse and inclusive workforce well-educated and will make our business stronger.
We are looking forward to seeing everyone in New Orleans. I’m personally looking forward to talking about how we create a workforce for the future that gets us all where we want to go.
Kathy Tazic, Managing Director Client Services, National Accounts