Get ready, hiring managers. Generation Z, those born between 1990 and 1999, has already begun entering the job market. This cohort of recent graduates is brimming with talent and eager to put it to use in your payroll department. But to make the most out of working with Gen Z, you need to understand what makes them tick and how they’ll relate to their baby boomer, Generation X and millennial colleagues.
Not every member of Gen Z can be neatly categorized, of course, but their own comments about their work preferences provide useful insights about the group as a whole. Here are some key highlights from Robert Half’s and Enactus’ Get Ready for Generation Z study, and what they mean for payroll managers:
Hiring managers shouldn’t be the only ones asking payroll job interview questions. A recent Accountemps survey shows 84 percent of candidates ask interview questions. You should, too. Here’s why and how:
A candidate who doesn’t ask questions comes off as either overwhelmed or uninterested in the job. But it’s not a one-way street. Applicants also need to make sure the work environment and responsibilities are right for them. And that requires making pertinent inquiries that will help you decide whether you can see yourself with the organization in the future.
Payroll professionals know that if they don’t keep up with changes in the profession, they’ll get left behind. That’s why accounting and finance professionals polled in a recent survey from global staffing firm Robert Half said having current job skills is a top concern. The majority of the respondents also said when weighing job opportunities, the chance to pick up new proficiencies is a major consideration. Not surprisingly, the more junior the respondents, the more eager they were to add to their professional tool kit.
Whether you’re just starting out or are already at the top, don’t be complacent about your payroll knowledge. Throughout your career, prioritize professional development, including certifications. Here are some ways to acquire the job skills you need.
Are your finance employees who lunch alone doing so because that’s their preference?
Maybe not. A recent survey from Accountemps, a Robert Half company, of finance professionals found that while nearly half (49 percent) of all respondents spend their lunches alone, 46 percent say they would actually like to share a meal with coworkers.
Maybe what they need is a gentle push — from you. Sharing a midday meal with coworkers could be something that improves your team’s work-life balance.
Collaboration Across the Enterprise
Payroll is one of the few departments that works with everyone else in a company. Collaborating with these diverse internal clients can be challenging at times. In a recent Robert Half survey, 39 percent of chief financial officers (CFOs) polled said dealing with a wide range of personalities is the greatest challenge for accounting and finance professionals when working with colleagues in other departments. In fact, the respondents considered this aspect of their job to be more difficult than managing stress, prioritizing conflicting deadlines and explaining financial information to a layperson.
With the increased touch-points payroll staff have with others, effective collaboration can be even more of a problem. Here are three tips for productive relationships:
How well payroll specialists handle crises says much about their leadership skills and management potential. Perhaps you entered the wrong data, which resulted in improper withholdings — and angry employees. Or maybe your department didn’t file quarterly returns on time.
Next time there’s an emergency work situation, turn it into an opportunity to demonstrate leadership by following these crisis management tips:
A recent Accountemps survey showed 36 percent of CFOs polled reported an increase in remote work opportunities over the past three years at their firms. This is good news for payroll professionals who desire more flexibility. However, this perk comes with the responsibility of showing employers you’re just as productive and efficient from home as you are in-office. These five tips can help you make the most of remote work.
It was once common for employees to stay with a single company from the outset of their careers until retirement. Today, that’s a rare event. Younger generations are viewing job-hopping as the new normal. According to a U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics report, Americans stay with an employer a median of 4.6 years, and that number drops to three years for workers age 25-34 — suggesting millennials are more likely to change jobs than the general population. A survey from temporary staffing agency Accountemps survey found a similar result: 57 percent of respondents age 18-34 believe changing jobs frequently benefits their career, whereas the majority of those ages 35 and older disagree.
It’s time to take charge of your payroll career. Whether you’re new to the field or a seasoned payroll pro, ongoing learning and training can help you get and stay ahead. The following professional development tips could help you flourish in this competitive and constantly evolving industry.