Shaping a multigenerational workforce for the digital age

Written by
Sarah Clark

23 Jul 2015

23 Jul 2015 • by Sarah Clark

With five generations now in the workplace, leaders face a workforce with an age span of 70 years. With this in mind, Tatum spoke proudly of Asda’s eldest employee (aged 90) and its youngest store manager aged 21, overseeing 94 staff.

Older workers (55+) are on the rise, comprising 18% of Asda’s workforce compared with 16% aged under 24. To bridge the generation gap, Asda offers initiatives such as reverse mentoring and ‘be CEO for the day’, where graduates shadow CEO Andy Clarke.

Responding to the evolving shopping trends – which Tatum says have changed more in the past two to three years than in the past three decades – her overall aim is to ensure HR is equipped to build skills, talent and engagement and give leaders the capability to lead in the increasingly digital world. She also said that diversity is about “being invited to the dance” whereas inclusion is about “kicking your shoes off and dancing all night – and feeling safe and confident to do it”.

“Diversity is about being invited to the dance and inclusion is about kicking your shoes off and dancing all night”

Tatum stressed the importance of setting a foundation for workplace culture; implementing consistent values, behaviours and leadership traits across the organisation. “If your workforce is representative of the community you serve – you’ll have better affinity with customers, and that will drive business results,” Tatum concluded.

Watch Hayley's full presentation

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Catch up on all the speakers presentations from Future Talent Conference 2015

  • Jim Carrick-Birtwell, CEO of Changeboard & Plotr: Welcome to Future Talent Conference 2015
  • Gurnek Bains, author & co-founder, YSC: What does globalisation mean for leadership culture?
  • Clare Moncrieff, executive advisor, CEB: Reinventing HR: Harnessing the potential of key talent segments
  • Hayley Tatum, senior VP of people, Asda: Shaping a multi-generational workforce for the digital age
  • Piers Linney, co-CEO of Outsourcery: Awakening diversity in the digital age
  • Kursty Groves-Knight, founder, Headspace: Space Matters: How physical environment can enhance creativity & innovation in our digital world
  • Alain de Botton, philosopher and author: Developing a mindset for change  
  • Peter Cheese, CEO, CIPD: Megatrends for HR
  • Robert Bolton, partner, KPMG: Decoding the HR dilemma
  • Alan Watkins, founder & CEO, Complete Coherence: What planet are you on? Tech-driven human development
  • Christine Deputy, group HRD, Aviva & Atif Sheikh, CEO & partner, Business 3.0: Creating a new Aviva
  • Porteur Keene, executive chairman at Changeboard: Closing Future Talent 2015