As more and more young people join the workforce, companies must be prepared to adapt to the changing times. A new study has revealed that companies who are more technologically inclined have a better chance at retaining and attracting younger workers.
Randstad US has released new findings from a study examining the digital proficiency of today’s companies and the widespread impact of an organization’s digital state on retaining and recruiting talent.
Results from Randstad’s Workplace 2025: The Post-Digital Frontier study reveal only 10% of enterprises are considered digitally “superior,” having fully implemented technologies like automation, artificial intelligence, and collaboration tools in the workplace, as well as invested in strategies for training or reskilling workers to be digitally savvy. While the majority (52%) are still “developing,” 38% of companies are “proficient,” falling somewhere in the middle of their digital transformation.
Based on responses from more than 800 C-suite leaders and department heads, as well as nearly 3,000 workers across the U.S., the study discovered superior companies are reaping significant benefits by completing their digital transformation journey. Compared to developing companies, superior companies are on average 165% more likely to achieve business objectives, increase revenue, save costs and see return on investments.
“Digital technologies have fundamentally altered nearly every aspect of business operations today,” said Alan Stukalsky, chief digital officer of Randstad North America—in a press release. “Yet, as our study illustrates, business leaders are struggling with how to unleash the power and promise that a technology-enabled workforce offers. The simple truth is companies must be willing to adapt and scale traditional business models, in order to effectively compete for talent and drive operational growth.”
Digital Innovation Has Reshaped Workers’ Expectations
A company’s reputation and utilization of digital tools plays a large role in the attraction and retention of talent. In fact, without both, employers could be at risk of losing as many as six out of 10 employees.
The study uncovered that 40% of employees have already left a job because they didn’t have access to the latest digital tools, and 58% report the need to seek new employment in order to secure digital skills. Employee respondents identified the following as factors that would greatly influence their decision to join a company:
- The company’s use of the latest digital tools (80%)
- An innovative culture (72%)
- The company’s reputation as a digital leader (62%)
If your company hasn’t crossed the digital threshold just yet, you may be setting yourself up for failure. Learn how to digitally transform your company and your recruiting practices at RecruitCon 2018. Today’s top recruiting experts share tips and tactics to help make your recruiting strategy more digitally-savvy, which in turn would help you retain those younger workers. Speakers—such as Lindsay Stanton of DigiMe—will show you how to recruit using social media, and Chris Comrie of Recruiting Leaders Academy will discuss how you can embrace artificial intelligence at your workplace.
Workers Expect Digital Leadership
The research revealed that a digitally-savvy leadership team is fundamental to outperforming competitors and a company’s ability to attract, engage, and retain workers. The majority of employees (72%) agree a company’s executive digital leadership greatly influences their willingness to join an organization; however, only 37% of employees completely/strongly agree their employers have a digital leader in place.
Respondents weighed in on the traits required for digital leaders today and in the future, such as:
- Ability to keep people connected and engaged (76%),
- Commitment to driving a culture of innovation, learning, and continuous improvement (76%),
- Agile and digital-savviness in their use of digital tools to drive business success (75%),
- Exceptional knowledge and skills related to collaboration and team-building (72%), and
- Adept at risk-taking (63%).
Workers Want Access to Digital Training and Skill Development
According to Randstad’s survey, “a lack of skilled resources to implement new digital technologies” is a top challenge, second only to “lack of budget.” Fortunately, the study found nearly all (90%) employees want to acquire new digital skills in order to further their careers—providing employers with a tangible solution to talent shortages and a way to attract candidates.
However, respondents were largely dissatisfied with the digital tools and learning technologies offered by their current employers:
- Only 13% say their employer has fully embraced technologies like automation, artificial intelligence, and collaboration tools.
- One-third of workers don’t feel that their employers offer ample opportunities to acquire digital skills with training and on-the-job learning.
- 58% of workers say their employers use the latest digital tools and platforms—but don’t provide the necessary training.
- 56% of workers feel they lack the skills required today to be digitally savvy.
- 50% don’t believe they will learn new digital skills fast enough to succeed in their careers.
It’s no secret that skills training plays a big part in employee engagement, and the Randstad findings drive this point further home. Learn from the nation’s top learning and employee engagement professionals how to build a superior professional development program that supports business growth and workforce retention. At Workforce L&D 2018, you’ll learn the latest training techniques, from virtual reality training to microlearning and everywhere in between. Learn how to engage to your workforce today, so they’re ready for whatever the future may hold.
Research findings are based on two separate projects programmed and fielded by Research Now: Employee Study and Employer Study. The Employee and Employer surveys were fielded from October-November 2017. The Employee study targeted respondents over the age of 18 that were employed and worked 20+ hours per week. For this survey, 2,691 respondents were asked about their views on digital transformation, automation, and the future of the workplace. For the Employer study, 819 hiring decision makers or C-suite executives that worked in companies with 10+ employees were asked about their digital transformation efforts, views on automation, and the future of the workplace.