Public Service: Is it Still a Career Choice?

The new modern worker values happiness and career development when considering their job or career choice.
Jennifer Dowd, Kronos | March 26, 2018
Flickr.com/Emily

As younger generations contemplate what their career paths will look like, public service still remains an area of interest for many college students. But what does a career path for someone just entering the job market look like?  Author Gayle Cinquegrani wrote an article recently for Bloomberg BNA describing the new modern worker.  This persona values happiness and career development when considering their job or career choice.

The article, Workers are More Willing to Change Jobs, points out that millennials, in particular, who don’t find those values they are looking for are willing to leave in pursuit of what really motivates them.  So how do public employers embrace this new way of thinking? What can they do to continue to encourage careers in public service while adapting to a changing culture?

The answer requires each agency to look at their current retention strategies and will likely be different for everyone. According to the paper, Understanding Millennials in Government, written by Peter Viechnicki of Deloitte Services, LP, governments should consider some strategies not geared towards generations, but rather lifetime milestones such as buying a car or starting a family. There are also particular benefits that may attract younger employees like student loan repayment assistance programs.

In reality, committing to a lifelong career in public service is probably not what employees fresh out of college are prepared to do. Viechnicki goes on to say

“governments may wish to develop different recruiting and career progression strategies, which allow them [Millennials with specific skill sets] to perform public service for shorter but still meaningful stints.” 

In other words, it’s better to have them for some time rather than not at all. A strong succession strategy or knowledge transfer plan allows governments to adapt to this type of work style.

About the Author:

Jennifer (Jen) Dowd is the Sr. Public Sector Marketing Manager at Kronos. With almost 20 years of working with both the Government an Education markets, Jen has a passion for the role the public workforce plays in our everyday lives. You can follow her on Twitter @PublicWorkforce.

Jennifer Dowd, 978-995-3818, jennifer.dowd@kronos.com