In earlier times, it was experience that would help one grab the best of jobs. You needed experience to get experience. But today , the young breed, with their energy and enthusiasm, are ruling the roost when it comes to getting hired for some coveted jobs. New-age companies are now creating ample opportunities for the youth.And they have ample reasons to support this decision too.
WOULD YOU BELIEVE IT IF YOU WERE TOLD THAT IN A FEW YEARS’ TIME,THE AVERAGE AGE IN AN ORGANISATION WOULD BE BELOW 40! A MAJORITY OF ORGANISATIONS PREFER THE YOUNG BRIGADE WHILE HIRING.
SO,IS THE YOUTH REALLY IN DEMAND OR IS THIS JUST A FAD?
According to Kamal Karanth, MD, Kelly Services & KellyOCG India, this trend largely exists in the e-commerce and the start-up space. “One of the trends that we have currently seen is that they do not prefer candidates above 36 years. Our operations team has worked on more than 300 positions in India and if we were to talk about the average age of candidates shortlisted and selected, we can clearly see that the average age for mid management is 27-31 years and that of senior management is 32 36 years. We have also had instances where good candidates have been rejected purely on the basis of age. The trend across small, mid-sized and large e-commerce setups and startups seems to be the same! The mind set of founders across ecommerce and start-up setups seems to be that they are young and would want a team that is of their age,“ he explains. He goes on to add that the advantage of hiring someone young are many; they are open to new ideas, mouldable, are willing to stretch, bring in radical thoughts, are risk takers and are willing to relocate and travel at short notice.
Companies believe that young people possess fresh, relevant knowledge of work, and are willing to take risks and sign-up for challenges, shares Dr Sriharsha A Achar, chief people officer (CPO) and chief information security officer (CISO), Apollo Munich Health Insurance Company Limited.“Young people exude a positive approach at work while acknowledging the difficult labour market circumstances. Also, they foresee the importance of soft skills that employers require today, and believe that they can exercise these skills to the best of their potential. Organisations in the services sector hire young people as they feel they are more adaptable and have creative capabilities,“ he adds.
Geethaa Ghaneckar, CHRO Lifestyle Business, Raymond Limited, agrees, “I do think there is a preference to hire younger people across all levels. At Raymond, over the last 3 years, our average age has reduced by over 10 years to sub 35 across all levels. I do think this will be the trend across all sectors. Younger people adapt to changes faster, they bring radical thoughts and challenge status quo besides being digitally savvy .“ Though the advantages of hiring young people are many , there are strong reasons as to why organisations should have a mixed workforce including all age groups. Talking about the shortcomings that young people come with, Achar says, “While there are several benefits of hiring young people, there are some drawbacks that organisations must pay heed to. Young people can be immature, lack direction and have discipline issues.
Such factors could lead to low loyalty levels towards the work assigned to them by an organisation.“
Karanth further explains, “The feedback we have received from HR managers across sectors include disadvantages such as short-sightedness, inability to appreciate functions and processes that exist, temperamental and inability to see the larger picture, low attention spans, inadequate hands-on experience, nonconsistent at work, require significant hand holding, etc. But one can argue that many of these also exist with older workers too.Having said that, younger workers are more tech savvy, hardworking and innovative. And they more than make up for their inadequacies with flexibility, hard work and creativity .
Ghaneckar states that in another 5-7 years, the average age in organisations across sectors will probably be below 40 years. “I do think though that having a good mix of experience and youth works best especially in core sectors while the new-age businesses will be better off having younger workforce who are connected and responsive to the changes around them constantly,“ he avers. However, they unanimously agree that a mix of generations lends itself to broader and more dynamic working environments, as each generation brings its experiences and expertise to the table. Hence, young or old, it is about what an employee brings to the table and not about the number of years heshe has been on the planet.
Source: Ascent 28 Oct’2015