Zoomers, otherwise known as Generation Z—are in their 20s and just starting to enter the workforce—might be at the bottom of the totem pole when it comes to workplace decision-making. However, recent data suggest that this generation may have a disproportionate influence when it comes to technology.
Sources of Workplace Authority
There are many factors that contribute to workplace authority. There is, of course, formal authority, illustrated through the organizational chart and its chain of command. There are also forms of informal authority based on factors such as personal charisma, interoffice relationships, or simply having the best ideas, which can come from education and experience, among other factors.
Generally speaking, we often assume that, all else being equal, experience comes with age. Older workers—presumably those who have been in the workforce the longest—tend to have more experience dealing with customers; managing staff; and navigating office politics, office etiquette, the corporate landscape, etc.
Again, this is “all else being equal.” In reality, different experiences and backgrounds can give some people and groups much more aptitude in certain areas than others who have been in the workforce for decades longer. This is one of the key benefits of diversity and inclusion in the workplace and an area Zoomers can have some real influence in the office.
Where Zoomers Stands Out
Terry Simpson, technical evangelist at automation company Nintex, believes Generation Z will dominate workplace tech adoption throughout the next decade and says Zoomers and junior-level employees will decide what tech tools are used throughout the business.
According to a recent survey by Nintex, 80% of decision-makers already said their company has adopted a technology or tool specifically because it was suggested/requested by Gen Z employees. Based in part on these data, Nintex predicts that Zoomers will drive efficiency and go against their company’s app policy if they know their preference will work better; legacy systems will cease to exist because of this.
While the members of Gen Z are still young and have very limited real-world work experience relative to their parents, grandparents, and older siblings, the unique perspective of this truly digital-native cohort means they have a lot to offer when it comes to understanding the technical space. This will likely translate into actual influence on company decision-making processes.