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  April 6th, 2023 | Written by

What Incentives Do Gen Z Supply Chain Employees Want in 2023? 

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Gen Z workers are digital natives that have shifted employer priorities. The demographic’s continued growth means supply chain organizations have a unique opportunity to expand their talent pool when hiring — if they take the right approach. 

So, what motivates the workforce of the future? The following incentives demonstrate what Gen Z supply chain employees want in 2023.

Professional Development

The next generation of workers prioritizes professional development in the workplace. Gen Z desires opportunities to climb the ladder within a company and grow within their careers. A Handshake study of Gen Z workers reveals 71% anticipate a promotion as early as six months into their job until the year-and-a-half mark. The same survey also shows 64% regularly attend career-growth events seeking development opportunities.

Attracting talent is vital for young workers, but keeping them is also crucial. About 20% of Gen Z employees say they’d stay at an employer that boosts and retrains their skills as time passes. Supply chain businesses should emphasize giving feedback to their employees, especially the youngest ones. Mentorships are valuable, so Gen Z workers receive teaching directly from experienced professionals.

Diversity and Inclusion

Since 2020, numerous companies have installed programs to diversify their workforce and help people from all walks of life feel included. One of Gen Z’s demands in its employers is a commitment to diversity. The Handshake study shows 55% of Gen Zers expect a commitment to diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging for all employees.

Diversity is important to Gen Z and this factor is rising across generations. A Glassdoor survey reports 76% of prospective employees rank diversity as a critical factor when evaluating job offers from various companies. Supply chain businesses should prioritize diversity and inclusion in the workforce and with their suppliers. Conducting business with minority-owned companies is an excellent way to demonstrate care for diversity.

Employees want to see diversity and inclusion in their workforce, and a lack thereof can lead to departures. The Glassdoor survey reveals nearly half of Black and Hispanic employees have left a job after experiencing discrimination in the workplace. Over 70% of Black and Hispanic workers say their employer needs to do more to improve their diversity. Supply chain companies without a commitment to diversity should prioritize such initiatives soon.

Social Events

Diversity initiatives create heterogeneous workforces and produce a better workplace culture for all. Employers can demonstrate their commitment to diversity by celebrating holidays and social events for employees of all backgrounds.

Ramadan, Easter, Holi and other religious holidays are important days for many, so organizations should prioritize recognizing all of them. Inclusive celebrations make employees of all backgrounds feel welcomed and educate others about a holiday they previously didn’t know.

Supply chain companies should recognize diversity transcends past demographics. There are other elements an organization should be mindful of. For example, event organizers should consider all employees’ dietary preferences and include varied food options. Some people may have allergies, practice veganism or can’t eat particular foods for religious reasons. Helping everybody feel included at business events goes a long way toward their morale.


In the 2020s, employees across generations have emphasized sustainability as the effects of climate change have become apparent. Gen Z workers are among the most adamant in their calls, with many prioritizing sustainability in their job search. A 2022 Bupa study shows two-thirds of Gen Z people are anxious about environmental issues and feel pressure to act on climate change.

Climate change is crucial enough for Gen Z employees to use it as a make-or-break factor. The Bupa study shows Gen Z looks at environmental, social and governance (ESG) scores when evaluating companies. Poor ESG scores would lead to 31% of Gen Z workers turning down a job offer, while 54% would take a pay cut to work for a business with strong environmental ethics.

Supply chain sustainability is an excellent practice for businesses looking to recruit young employees and stay at the top of their industry. Companies can achieve higher ESG scores by switching to renewable energy wherever possible and lowering their carbon footprint. For example, electric vehicles have no tailpipe emissions and are easy for fleet owners to maintain. The fewer moving parts lead to cheaper maintenance costs over time.

Mental Health Programs

The past few years have initiated a worldwide conversation about mental health. More employers have encouraged their workers to speak about their anxieties because mental health issues can lead to disengagement in the workplace, lower productivity and quicker burnout. The recent pandemic and economic uncertainties have led to high stress for Gen Z.

A 2021 Deloitte survey finds nearly 60% of Gen Z workers have experienced workplace stress but didn’t tell their employers. Forty-seven percent of Gen Z employees have required time off to care for their mental health but did not give the employer this reason for calling out. An improved conversation around mental health is necessary for recruiting and retention.

Supply chain companies should provide genuine support for employees no matter what they’re going through. Workers who feel like their employer doesn’t will feel discouraged and disengaged, and are more likely to leave. Demonstrating care leads to higher trust and better relationships between managers and employees. Businesses should create or participate in mental health programs to ensure everybody has an outlet to get their heads in the right places.

Flexibility and Benefits

The pandemic changed the worldwide workforce and might not return to how it was in 2019 and before. One permanent change could be flexibility, which is quickly becoming a priority for Gen Z workers. These young employees experienced flexibility through virtual classes in college or telework in their young careers. Many employers have returned their employees to the office, but Gen Z wants flexibility.

The previous Handshake study reveals Gen Z employees desire a modern version of benefits. For example, 73% of these young workers want a flexible schedule. Some employees may work better in the morning, while others are most productive on the night shift.

Another high preference for Gen Z workers is health care. Seventy-six percent of these employees label health care benefits as the most important and 73% say they’d stay with an employer who offers good benefits.

Gen Z’s preferences reflect trends across workers, but they show an increased demand. A 2022 Career Builder survey shows 46% of all job seekers search for better benefits and 51% want a more flexible schedule. Supply chain companies must create solid benefits packages for recruitment because they’re vital for attracting the best young talent available.

Recruiting Gen Z in 2023

With every passing year, Gen Z will occupy a larger share of the workforce. The new generation brings new priorities, so companies must meet their demands. These six points identify what Gen Z employees look for and how supply chain businesses can use them for recruitment.