Allan Holmes on Monday wrote an excellent post on how the federal government is losing talented young workers because it simply reacts too slowly and does not seem open to new ideas. DMNews has an interesting interview with Pamela Evans, global digital marketing manager at IBM, about how IBM has been successful at recruiting, retaining and appealing to the younger generation. The effort to appeal to younger workers, Evans says, started 11 years ago, when IBM established a website exclusively for software developers. "We're not looking to push them to go places where we are; we really want to intercept them where they are," she says.
This is just one example of how the federal government can learn a lot from the private sector in terms of appealing to the younger workforce. This is backed up by the results of the 2010 Federal Employee Viewpoint Survey, released last week, which found that 73 percent of private sector workers feel encouraged to come up with new and better ways of doing things, compared to just 60 percent of federal employees.
But as many of the comments on Allan's post indicate, the best ideas on attracting the younger cadre will do little if managers don't also buckle down and realize that change is necessary. How does your manager measure up when it comes to embracing new ideas? How does this affect your agency's ability to recruit and retain younger workers?