A Study on Generational Differences in the Public Sector

Throughout the last several years, the makeup of the workforce in the public sector has changed. With the influx of Baby Boomers entering retirement, the Government Business Council (2012) predicted that the public sector would need to hire over 200,000 employees in the last couple of years and in the years to come. With one generation leaving, two new generations are entering the workforce, the Millennials. A considerable body of research about the impact of generational gaps in the workforce has been conducted in the past. Most of the research conducted has focused on Baby Boomers and Generation Xers. Research has not only shown that there are generational differences, but it has also demonstrated that generational cohorts differ in their work values. Most of the literature describes generational differences as work attitudes and technological advances. This study will uniquely focus on work values, such as job satisfaction and workplace commitment. This study examines the importance of understanding how generational gaps affect communication in the workplace. This study uniquely looks at the Los Angeles County Workforce Development, Aging and Community Services Department and evaluates if generational differences negatively affect interoffice communication. This study will focus on Baby Boomers, Generation Xers, and Millennial employees from Los Angeles County's Workforce Development, Aging & Community Services department. The research will be conducted at the East Los Angeles Community Senior Center. A survey will be created and administered to 30 employees via Survey Monkey. Possible concerns with the external and internal validity of this study will be presented in the research paper.