Gen Z set to pass baby boomers in workforce: Report

The number of full-time Generation Z employees is set to surpass boomers in 2024, according to a new report by Glassdoor Economic Research.

“The ‘kids these days’ are no longer just kids,” Daniel Zhao, the lead economist and senior manager on Glassdoor’s economic research team and a co-author on the report, wrote on X, the site formerly known as Twitter.

Baby boomers made up the largest share of full-time workers from the late 1970s through 2011. Generation X took over in 2012 and reigned until 2018.

Millennials have since overtaken Gen X as the dominant generation in the full-time workforce, and Gen Z isn’t likely to overtake them until the early 2040s, according to the Glassdoor report.

“The coming year will still represent a pivotal moment of cultural change that U.S. companies cannot ignore as Gen Z workers — who care deeply about community connections, about having their voices heard in the workplace, about transparent and responsive leadership, and about diversity and inclusion — make up a rapidly growing share of the workforce,” the researchers wrote in the report.

The pandemic radically changed the way the world works, and Glassdoor’s 2024 Workplace Trends report found companies are increasingly pushing employees to return to the office.

That offers an opportunity for small and midsized companies that are more flexible on remote work policies to attract talent.

Companies have had to pay more for talented workers due to high demand following the pandemic, but recent economic data shows the pace of hiring has slowed significantly — while maintaining historically low unemployment.

But benefits including commuter assistance, gym memberships and 401(k) plans have started to erode, a trend researchers say could pick up in 2024. Industries that have had a tumultuous 2023, namely in tech and finance, have been hit hardest by these declines.

The companies that cut staff in 2023 saw a sharp decline in their overall Glassdoor rating, according to the report, which noted morale remains depressed months after layoffs.

“The coming year will test the robustness of workplace institutions,” the report’s authors wrote. “There is light ahead, but we are not quite out of the woods yet.”

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