A Generational Approach on Senior Living Workforce

Senior Housing News, with sponsorship from PointClickCare, recently published an e-book that looks at the senior living workforce and its impact across five generations: Traditionalist, baby boomers, Generation X, Generation Y (the millennial generation), and Generation Z. The millennial generation compromises the largest percentage of the workforce. Many businesses have focused their efforts on this generation, but it is important to consider the other generations and their values.

Traditionalists (1922-1943) make up 2% of the workforce and are known to be hardworking and reliable. Baby boomers (1944-1964) make up 25% of the workforce and are known for being independent and resourceful. Generation X (1965-1980) accounts for 33% of the workforce and is known for flexibility, tech-savviness, and an emphasis on work-life balance. Generation Y/Millennials (1981-1999) is goal-oriented and tend to change jobs frequently.

As stated by Joy Laudlick, director of clinical quality management for Senior Housing Companies, “each generation has its own demands and dislikes when it comes to the senior living workplace.” She incorporates various approaches for managing a multi-generational workforce. For Traditionalists, managers should reach out to see how they feel, use them to train newer staff, and partner with younger staff for technology training. For Baby boomers, managers should ensure they have a visible career path, recognize their achievements, and show respect for their opinions/contributions. For Generation X, managers shouldn’t micromanage and should provide leadership opportunities. Managers of Generation Y/Millennials and Generation Z should provide constant feedback, focus on purpose rather than profit, and mentor them.

Further, Laudlick highlights the importance of technology and how it can be used to bridge the gap between different generations in the workforce. Older generations may be afraid and hesitant to use technology, but it is important to show them how intuitive and efficient technology can be. While millennials are accustomed to technology, they struggle with using the opportunities that technology provides to make their lives easier. Using technology as a way to connect the generations will facilitate the continuous evolution of the aged care workforce. Download the ebook.

PointClickCare is sponsoring The Global Ageing Network’s Workforce Summit, to be held in Toronto, Canada, on Tuesday, September 17, 2019. It will bring together policymakers, researchers, for-profit and nonprofit international home care providers, educators, and consumer/worker groups to discuss key issues in the ageing services workforce. The summit will place a special emphasis on international training standards for front line personal care assistants and their supervisors.