27/11/2007 - 13:39

Gen Y least favoured by small business

27/11/2007 - 13:39


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Generation Y employees are the least favoured by small businesses, according to the latest Sensis Business Index.

Generation Y employees are the least favoured by small businesses, according to the latest Sensis Business Index.

The survey, which is based on interviews with 1,800 businesses, shows Baby Boomers, closely followed by Generation X, are the preferred employees of small businesses.

Sensis said given the choice, small businesses were twice as likely to hire a Baby Boomer or Generation X employee over a Generation Y employee.

Baby Boomers are the generation of first choice for small businesses looking to hire staff, with 29 per cent of small and medium businesses (SMEs) preferring to hire this generation.

"Small business operators told us they valued the reliability they get from Baby Boomers, as well as their experience, quality of work and professional attitude," Sensis said.

"Lack of technical skills and age are seen as the biggest weaknesses of Baby Boomer employees," she added.

Generation X employees came in a close second preference, with 28 per cent of SMEs preferring to employ this age group.

"Gen Xers are held in high esteem for their reliability, closely followed by their technical skills and enthusiasm.

"However, family commitments are seen by some employers as a downside to employing this generation," she explained.

Sensis said only 13 per cent of SME owners preferred to recruit Generation Y staff.

"Enthusiasm and a willingness to learn are Gen Ys greatest assets, but reliability, lack of experience, frequent job changing and personal attitude caused concerns for small business employers."

Overall, SMEs ranked Baby Boomer employees the best value for money, followed by Generation X and then Generation Y.

"It is interesting to note SMEs generally prefer to hire employees from their own generation, which means they might not get the diversity their business may need," Sensis stated.

The Sensis Business Index shows Baby Boomers prefer to hire other baby boomers (33 per cent), followed by Generation X (23 per cent) and Generation Y (14 per cent).

Sensis said about half of Generation X SME operators preferred to hire fellow Generation Xers.

About one in five Generation X SME operators prefer Baby Boomer employees, while one in 10 would select a Generation Y employee.

"In contrast, Generation Y small business operators are not as strongly wedded to their own generation as the earlier generations are, with their preferences nearly split equally between the generations."

The report shows 26 per cent of generation Y small business operators prefer to employ staff from the same generation, while 25 per cent prefer Generation X employees and 22 per cent prefer Baby Boomers.




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