Traditionally our lives have three key stages, Education, Working Life and Retirement. However, with the increasingly competitive job market we are seeing many individuals change jobs more often and in some cases even change career. This makes the need for professional education and life-long learning of paramount importance.
On average people now spend just 13 months in a role! That’s right, I said 13 months. Now, some people reading this will say that those figures are skewed by the millennial generation (born 1981 – 1995) who don’t value traditional career paths and are more motivated by experiences than by hierarchy. However, this view of Millennials isn’t accurate. PWC in their “Millennials at Work” report and Deloitte in their Millennial Survey 2017 have found that Millennials do value stability of employment, but they want interesting and challenging projects to work on; if these aren’t there at a company then they will move on.
This is also backed up by statistics coming from the US Department of Labor which suggests Millennials move roles at the same rate as those in Generation X. However, where this data gets really interesting is when you examine the data around those who have been with the same employer for five years or more. What has now been found is that those in Generation X (born 1965 – 1980) move more frequently than Millennials.
So, what does all this mean?
What becomes apparent when you analyse the statistics is that the millennial generation isn’t all that different from previous generations. They want meaningful work, just as previous generations did. Teddy Roosevelt once said, “Far and away the best prize that life offers is the chance to work hard at work worth doing.”
Why does this matter for the pensions industry?
So far I’ve talked a lot about Millennials and I’m sure some of you will guess where I am going with this. By 2020 Millennials and Generation Z (born 1996 – 2012) will make up over 50% of the UK workforce. Therefore, it is important that we make sure that they are engaged and in order to do this, employers will need to offer roles that have purpose along with opportunities for career progression that offer new challenges and experiences.
A career with purpose
The pensions industry is not exactly renowned for blowing its own trumpet about the variety and breadth of jobs that it can offer. However, a career in pensions should really appeal to Millennials and Generation Z as the work the pensions industry does has a massive and vital impact on people’s lives. The whole raison d’être of the pensions and lifetime savings industry is to ensure that people have enough money to live on in retirement. There are not many careers outside of public service where you can have such a huge impact on people’s ability to live fulfilling and rewarding lives post-employment.
On average people now spend just 13 months in a role! That’s right, I said 13 months.
A career with challenge
The government has a habit of changing its mind on pensions regularly. This means there are always going to be challenges for those who choose to work in the industry. There will always be change management projects, there will continue to be a need for good understanding of investments, and just when you think you’ve mastered everything, a new government will get elected and change the rules again.
It’s a popular belief amongst many professionals that lifelong learning should be reserved for people who have reached a certain age and who need to learn new skills to stay employed. However, that’s a misconception as lifelong learning can benefit everyone. This is especially true if you are interested in career development. Lifelong learning will ensure professional advancement as employers are more frequently requesting that we search for individuals who not only have academic and professional qualifications but who are also at the forefront of current trends in the market place. This means that when we are recruiting leaders we are keen to understand what conferences, webinars and other training sessions they have attended, what they took away from it and more importantly how they have applied that in practice. It’s also worth noting that those individuals who learn more and can apply it in practice typically earn more.
About the author: Paul Battye – Moorlands Human Capital
Paul Battye is Founding Chief Executive of Moorlands Human Capital, a specialist Executive Search and Talent Management Consultancy.
Paul specialises in senior executive and nonexecutive appointments in the Asset Management, Pensions and FinTech sectors. Paul has a wealth of experience advising organisations on how to attract, retain and develop the best talent. His work includes team and individual capability evaluations, leadership and succession mandates.