Every new generation brings a new set of challenges and issues for workers and hiring managers to tackle if they want their companies to stick around for years to come.
In 2018, jobs are shifting more towards A.I. technology, managers are struggling to oversee multi-locational teams, and both Millennial and Baby-Boomers are stumbling to communicate effectively. Clearly, today’s modern workforce is faced with a unique set of hurdles for both employees and employers. And it’s up for us to learn how to navigate them if we want to keep moving forward in our careers. So, we turned to the experts to lessen our workplace worries.
We asked the top HR leaders and career advisors what they thought were the most common career challenges people are facing today.
Read on to discover the biggest career problems they identified and strategies to overcome them:
1. The partner’s involuntary career change
“In today’s two-income families, one partner can be recruited, promoted, or transferred to another city, country or continent, which puts their partner in the unenviable position of having to find another job in a new location. Relocation is disruptive for any family but one partner will often be required to make a bigger sacrifice than the other in terms of career.”
So what’s the solution to handling a partner’s unexpected relocation? Get the company to offer benefits to minimize the disruption to the rest of the family.
“Ask your partner to negotiate a relocation and job search assistance package as part of the transfer, sometimes this is included in a corporate-sponsored move.”
— George Dutch, M.A. Career Change Expert at JobJoy
2. Career transitioning
“Many job seekers lack the ability to translate previous work experiences and skills into new industries and employment opportunities. The fact is many employers are looking for personality types, individuals with specific soft skills. The technical side of the job can be taught on-site. The problem is many job seekers seem to think if they’re last experience does not match a job posting’s desired requirements 100% then they don’t stand a chance and don’t bother applying.”
But candidates shouldn’t be afraid to apply for jobs that may not seem like a perfect fit on paper.
“There are always areas where an applicant may be lagging but then they may also excel in other areas the company would find valuable.”
— Rudeth Shaughnessy Sr. Editor at Copy My Resume
3. Ageism in the workplace
“Too frequently I speak to people who may lose their job in their 50’s due to cost-cutting and mergers who then have extreme difficulty in finding work. The strong results can come from teams that include the millennials with new and creative ideas, along with the Gen Xrs and Baby Boomers with deep industry and client expertise. And with there being less new skilled entrants into the workforce compared to those retiring, companies that don’t value the mature works could find themselves understaffed.”
— Stan C. Kimer, President at Total Engagement Consulting
4. The career pivot
“People are changing jobs more frequently today than ever before and many also choose to make a career change. It can be challenging, and job seekers should really think about a career they see themselves remaining in for the long term. Making a career change is not something you want to be doing many times over.”
— Natalya Khaykis, Career Expert at ZipJobs
5. Balancing meaning and duty
“Especially for millennials, the challenge is is finding a job that is fulfilling and has personal meaning. Then they need to reconcile that with the work that “needs to get done” or some of the less fulfilling requirements and objectives of the position. We search for work that meets both business objectives and also fulfills us personally by aligning with our values.”
— Stephanie Troiano, Content Marketer at TheHireTalent
6. Too many choices
“Today’s single biggest career challenge is figuring out what you really want to do. There are more choices than ever before, and there is more information to process. People have difficulty looking inside themselves for the answer to what they want to do.”
— Younes Lattenist, Founder and CEO of Mintful
7. Finding a purpose
“We’ve been taught that finding a job we are passionate about is the key to success. The problem is that there just aren’t enough jobs out there for all millennials to find a position that is full of both internal and external rewards. Entry-level jobs can seem especially mindless and insignificant, which is why it’s vital for millennials to think about their medium and long-term goals instead of freaking out about not feeling a sense of purpose during the first years of their careers. Purpose comes with years of experience and investment towards goals and a healthy work/life balance.”
— Lexie Kadlec, Director of Enrollment Management at The Intern Group
8. Lack of workforce mobility
“Long gone are the days of readily available employees who will move for the right development opportunities. On the employee side it creates a dynamic which results in a greater number of transitions between companies throughout their career to drive professional development and career progression. On the employer side it results in a continuing trend of increased “undesired” turnover.”
The burden then falls to HR to develop new strategies for holding onto employees long-term.
“The residual effect of this issue is a challenge to corporations and hiring managers to rethink their traditional paradigms of “job hopping” and to be proactive in identifying talent-rich geographies for forecasted future employee growth.”
— Ruben Moreno, HR Practice Leader at Blue Rock Source
9. Being moved to another role you aren’t passionate about
“The professional world is more cut-throat than ever before, with more skills available to be learned and mastered than at any other point in history; there are more roles, industries and made-up job titles than anyone can count. Because of this, having transferable skills can be a gift and a curse; just because you may be good at something, it doesn’t mean you necessarily want it to be your responsibility. However, if your managers get wind of your ability, you can soon find yourself getting moved about.”
— Steve Pritchard, HR Consultant for giffgaff
10. Staying current
“Whether it is professional development specifically for your industry, learning the latest LinkedIn changes, or even mastering new computer programs, those who do not evolve will be left behind. Even non-tech-savvy positions like construction now require that the candidates be fluent in online application systems. If you aren’t learning something, you are doomed to a stagnant career at best and potential long-term unemployment at the worst.”
— Donna Shannon, President, Personal Touch Career Services