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Organisations need to as dynamic as the economy, and membership in the workforce is continually changing as older generation  enter retirement and younger generation begin their careers, therefore, organisations must be cognizant of the characteristics of entry level recruits in order to prepare them to better meet the organisation's goals and objectives (Reisenwitz and Iyer  2009). Human Resource Management (HRM) should ensure that the human capital is well managed, protected and all matters relating to resources are effectively dealt with. (Public Service Commission, 2010: ii). HRM links people on related activities in line with the strategy of the organisation, keeping in mind that the new generation Y workforce is characterised by family orientation, ambition, tech savvy, fast communicators and want to be loved. Generation Y members have used computers since a young age and are e-learners (Allerton, 2001).

Amos, T., Ristow, A., Ristow, L. & Pearse, N (2008:8) states that managers who set up the effective HRM system are likely to succeed in supporting the achievement of the business objectives, they have an element of understanding and managing the human aspects of the business.

The operational HRM system that is effective in the public sector, definitely improves the achievement of objectives of the organisation which leads to better service delivery to the public.

Employers have been concerned with the recruitment and retention of employees for many decades. Employers realise that methods used to attract and retain previous generations are not as effective today with the younger generation. Huybers, C, M. (2011:2)

The recruitment and retention in the Public Sector should be seen as being challenged by the increasing number of incoming Generation Y. According to Zemke, R., et al. (2000) many organisations are yet unaware there's a labour shortage, or at least they act that way, they expect employees to bend to the company's will and to adapt to meet the demands of the company culture.

Executives complain about their high turnover, the difficulty of finding good people, and the skyrocketing costs of replacing those who've left, generationally friendly companies are concerned and focused, on a daily basis, with retention, and on making their workplaces magnets for excellence—not employee-toxic, they know that keeping their people is every bit as important in today's economy as finding and retaining customers, therefore, they offer lots of training, from one-on-one coaching opportunities to interactive computer-based training to an extensive and varied menu of classroom courses (Zemke, R., et al. 2000).

The assignment will concentrate on the implementation of strategies on recruitment and selection process for Generation Y and the elements of the organisational Retention Strategy for X and Y generation. The retention methods for the effective knowledge and capital by demonstrating how valuable knowledge is transferred from the Baby Boomers to Generations X and Y within Gauteng Provincial Treasury Department in ensuring that employees are equipped with substantial knowledge to enhance service delivery to the public . Taking into account the challenges that are faced by Gauteng Provincial Treasury (GPT) which include attracting candidates and retaining employees of scare skills, when looking at this dynamic Generation Y, which is characterised as being self -focused, ambitious, highly educated and career –oriented individuals.

The Human Resource (HR) in South Africa occurs within definite legislation frameworks as indicated in the table 1 below

1.1 Table 1 Legislative Framework

Legislation Provisions

The Constitution of the Republic of South Africa (1996) Chapter 10 of the Constitution provides that public administration must be governed by the democratic values and principles enshrined in the Constitution. In respect of Human Resource Management, Section 23 of the Constitution is of particular importance which provides fair labour practices.

Public Service Act, 1994, as amended The purpose is to provide for the organisation and administration of the Public Service, regulate the conditions of employment, terms of office, discipline, retirement and discharge of members of the Public Service, and matters connected with.

White Paper on Human Resource Management  in the Public Service,1997 The purpose was to provide a policy framework that will facilitate the development of human resource management practices which support an effective and efficient Public Service, geared for economic and social transformation.

Skills Development Act,97 of 1998 The purpose of the Act is to provide an institutional framework to devise and implement national, sector and workplace strategies to develop and improve the skills of the South African workforce and provide for leanerships that lead to recognised occupational qualifications.

Employment Equity Act(EEA), 55 of 1998 The purpose of the EEA is to achieve equity in the workplace by promoting equal opportunity and fair treatment in employment through the elimination of unfair discrimination and implementing affirmative action measures to redress the disadvantages in employment

Source: (Public Service Commission, 2010: 34-35).


According to Grobler, P.A., Warnich, S., Carrell, M.R., Elbert, N.F., Hatfileld, R.D., (2011:179), every organisation must recruit and select applicants to fill the positions, regardless of the size, product or service. HR personnel usually recruits vacant positions and select the best candidate to fill a position to implement the employment equity policies.

GPT is committed in providing equal employment opportunities for all and seek to hire skilled and competent staff in addressing the demand for critical and scares skills. The Department aims to recruit the best dynamic Generation Y candidates to develop and maintain delivery standards consistent with its mission, strategy and legislative requirements. The department developed the recruitment and selection policy as regulated by the Public Service Act (PSA) to minimise inconsistencies in the processes, which impact negatively on the credibility of the Public Service.


Huybers, C, M. (2011:27) states that it is important to have on line application process, Generation Y like to apply immediately for a job and wants response immediately as a techno savvy group.

Gauteng Provincial Government (GPG) has introduced the E-Recruitment, job centre tool that enables Generation Y to apply on line, on the other hand it strategically achieves the set Provincial priorities. GPT has introduced an online application for the internship programme on the departmental Facebook page.

Huybers, C, M. (2011:28) highlight eight factors, “according to Tulgan (2009) that Generation Y looks for in a job are”:

• “Performance-based compensation. Generation Y feels very strongly about getting compensated appropriately for their performance. Performance compensation is sometimes more important than actual salary to this group of people. Huybers, C, M. (2011:27)

• “Flexible schedules. Generation Y likes to have control over their schedule and if they are putting in long hours, they want to know that they will be able to take some time off in exchange for those long hours”. Huybers, C, M. (2011:28)

• “Flexible location. It is important for these folks to have the flexibility to define their own work space by such ways as arranging their furniture, computers, and art work.” Huybers, C, M. (2011:28)

• “Marketable skills. This generation is looking for a job where they can build themselves up with the employer's resources. They are looking for formal and informal training opportunities that build their skills and knowledge faster than they would become obsolete”. Huybers, C, M. (2011:28)

• “Access to decision makers. Not only does Generation Y not want to wait to be promoted, but they also do not want to wait to build relationships with important leaders, managers, clients, customers, vendors, or co-workers”. Huybers, C, M. (2011:28)

• Personal credit for results achieved. Generation Y wants to be recognized for the work and results of the work they did. They are not interested in making others look good. They are interested in receiving the accolades they feel they deserve for the work they did”. Huybers, C, M. (2011:28)

• “A clear area of responsibility. This generation wants to know that they will have control over something to prove that they can do it”. Huybers, C, M. (2011:28)

• “The chance for creative expression. Generation Y wants to know that what they do provides value to the organization, but they also want to have the freedom to do some things their own way”. Huybers, C, M. (2011:28)

Employers may have a better chance of attracting the Generation Y job seekers when using these eight factors in the recruiting process.


Grobler, P.A., et al. (2011:179), defines recruitment process as “the process of acquiring applicants who are available and qualified to fill positions in the organisation.”

The process is important, it gives an organisation an opportunity to attract the best candidates with ability and potential. The following identifies what recruiting efforts employers are currently using to attract Generation Y.

2.2.1 Clear Recruitment Policy and Procedures

Amos, T., et al. (2008:116), state that carrying out the recruitment programme is guided by the provision of the policy. On the other hand the (Public Service Commission, 2010: 16) states that departments are still struggling to implement basic process according to set procedures, whereas there is a clear legislative framework, policies supported by guidelines and tools in the area of recruitment and selection.

GPT developed recruitment policy jointly form part of the integrated approach towards staff recruitment, retention and development in keeping with the Employment Equity Act. The departmental equity plan exist in order to meet the national employment equity targets when posts are established to accommodate the Generation Y.

2.2.2 Consider and choose the best sources of recruitment

Amos, T., et al. (2008:116), states that the recruitment policy should provide guidance for the source of recruitment.

GPT recruitment policy clearly indicates that the lower level posts are sourced internally on GPG website and Department of Public Service and Administration (DPSA) websites for a period of not less than two calendar weeks. The department also uses the tertiary institutions to recruit internships and leanerships.

2.2.3 Choose the appropriate recruitment method

According to (South Africa, White Paper on Human Resource Management in Public Service, December 1997), “identifying and attracting suitable applicants depends on the effectiveness of departmental advertising, both in terms of the substance of the advertisement and the extent to which it reaches the target audience.”

The decision for the best recruitment method is important when the institution attract suitable applicants. Departmental institutions uses different methods that suites their environment when recruiting applicants.

2.2.4 Implement the decision on application of recruitment method

(South Africa, White Paper on Human Resource Management in Public Service, December 1997), state the principles to be applied when drawing up the advertisements, such as inclusion of the accurate job description and criteria to be applied in selection, qualifications to include skills, and relevant experience also, not defined primarily on educational attainment, advertisement to make it clear that Public Service is committed to employment equity and the language and style to be clear and simple to attract candidates from all targeted groups to whom Public Service wishes to attract.

The advertised post should contain the same key performance areas as indicated in the job description. Generation Y want to see the clear advertisement where they will see their potential abilities will be utilised.


Amos, T., et al. (2008:116) define selection process as the “process of selecting the most suitable candidate from the pool of candidates recruited.”

After shortlisted candidates have been interviewed, the selection panel discuss and agree on the most suitable candidate and also recommend the second best candidate for the position if applicable.

The process involves the following phases:

• Deciding on a selection strategy. Erasmus, B., Swanepoel, B., Van Wyk M., & Schenk, H (2005: 236), states different selection strategies to choose from, such as review of the applicant's educational background and work history. Applicant's specific skills, knowledge or abilities may be tested. Review of the submitted application forms. Lastly, the organisation may use the aptitude strategy in the form of writing tests to measure certain traits of individuals.

Selection strategy decided by GPT, especially for the Generation Y includes the writing of simulation test which the knowledge and computer skills are tested.

• Conducting a preliminary interview. According to Erasmus, B., et al. (2005:239), short and concise selection process starts with the preliminary interview. The purpose is to eliminate applicants who are not qualified. The process usually happens over telephone.

GPT conducts shortlisting and invite only shortlisted candidates for interviews telephonically, confirm via e-mail

• Collection of information. Erasmus, B., et al. (2005:239), indicate that the method to use to collect information on candidates, is not only through interviewing. There are different methods such as review letters of recommendations, setting up employment test and conducting reference checks.

The department forward requests for verification and consent forms of recommended candidates to service providers for verification and validation. The department conducts Cipro checks, qualification, criminal and reference checking via external service providers.

• Making a selection decision. The selection committee must reach consensus on the most suitable candidate for the post after the last candidate has been interviewed. Erasmus, B., et al. (2005:255)

The selection decision should be based on the assessment of the candidates in conjunction with the relevant legislative environment. The best selection for the Generation Y for GPT is based on the training and competency necessary to meet the inherent requirement of the post, need for developing trainable potential candidate and the department`s employment equity plan.

• Placing the candidate. This is the last stage of the selection process according to Erasmus, B., et al. (2005:256), an offer of employment can be made to the successful candidate once the selection decision has been made.

After the short listed candidates have been interviewed, the selection panel discuss and agree on the most suitable candidate and also recommend the second best candidate for the position, if applicable.


Setting organisational goals, development of job design, measurement of job success, job specifications and policy makers are the elements in the selection process. (Grobler, P.A., et al. (2011:198).

• General hiring policy of the organisation must be included when setting organisational goals.

• Job design involves determining what duties and responsibilities each job will entail.

• The kind of employees to recruit and select in future will be determined by discovering successful employees.

• The development and design of job specification specifies what skills, and background an individual must have to qualify for the job.

• Policy makers are involved in the selection process and must determine which combination of interviews, tests, or other selection devises to use.


The best selection strategy for the Generation Y involves the clear developed policy on selection. Successful Generation Y candidates are obtained and need to be retained depending on the institution`s culture and leadership.


According to Ivy Cummings-White & Ify S. Diala (2013) “In the twenty-first century workplace, four generations are at work together. In the United States, the number of individuals 65 and older is expected to double from 37 million in 2010 to exceed 70 million in 2030. Born between 1946 and 1964,

Boomers were the most prevalent age unit in America in 2007. A substantial number of Boomers continue to enter retirement, affecting both private and public sectors. These Boomers occupy a vast number of leadership roles, holding a

significant amount of institutional knowledge. As Boomers exit an organization, tacit and explicit knowledge leave with them. This emerging phenomenon will have significant influences on organizational abilities to ensure organized transfers of skills and knowledge”.


Succession planning was a significant activity needed to ensure business continuity. Leaders could generate positive social change by exploring the principles and insights of hidden abilities to sustain the organization, raising awareness regarding the risks related to the large number of baby boomers exiting the workforce (Ganu & Boateng, 2012). Leaders leaving organizations without a succession plan could jeopardize projects and disrupt business continuity (Ganu & Boateng, 2012). Fiscal advisors who delay succession planning jeopardize the viability of the organization (McDonnell, Lamare, Gunnigle, & Lavelle, 2010). In a 2010 Succession Planning Study from 260 multinational enterprises, McDonnell, Lamare, Gunnigle, and Lavelle (2010) stated that 92% of the advisors surveyed believe not possessing a succession plan created a business risk.

Take cognisance of the various institutional challenges and resources. Refer to and draw from “best practices” and include the following in your strategy:


Knowledge retention focuses on the relationship with employees through their life cycle in an institution. Retention involves capturing knowledge in the organization so that it can be used later.  Walsh and Ungson (1991) define five knowledge repositories, namely individuals, culture, transformations (i.e. procedures & formalized systems), structures (e.g. formal and informal networks), and external activities.  (Frost, 2013)

Most organizations have retirement geared toward the age of 65. Because of this notion, companies must prepare knowledge management techniques to secure their

knowledge. Incorporating knowledge management into an organization's processes along with changing the culture can promote a knowledge sharing environment. While

successfully assessing and obtaining knowledge may be a challenge, the changing labour demographics are forcing industries to take action. The Baby Boomers are a sizeable group in the workplace and employers are struggling to transfer their knowledge. No matter how knowledge is acquired, there must be a way for it to be captured, shared, and deployed. The potential of KM can exist in capturing, retaining, and leveraging knowledge of personnel. Facilitation of knowledge transfer from older workers will enable the younger generation of workers to leverage one another's knowledge that will increase organizational efficiency and productivity Ivy Cummings-White & Ify S. Diala (2013)


With employee retention at or near the top of the list of corporate "must meet" measures, the most generationally friendly of companies are treating their employees as they do their customers, they are learning all they can about them, working to meet their specific needs, and serving them according to their unique preferences (Zemke, R., et al. 2000).


Alleton, H.(2001) “Generation why”, Training and Development, Vol.55 No.11, available at: 14May 2016).

Erasmus, B., Swanepoel, B. and Schenk, H., (2005). South African human resource management for the public sector. Cape Town: Juta and Company Ltd.

Grobler, P.A., Warnich, S., Carrell, M.R., Elbert, N.F., Hatfileld, R.D., (2011). Human Resource Management in South Africa. U.K: Cengage Learning.

Harvard Business Essentials, (2002).Hiring and Keeping the Best People. U.S.A: Harvard Business School.

Huybers, C, M. (2011).Recruitment and Retention of Generation Y. Menomonie, WI

University of Wisconsin-Stout (A Research Paper)

Ivy Cummings-White & Ify S. Diala. (2013) “Knowledge Transfer in a Municipality Study on Baby Boomer Exodus from the Workforce.” International Journal of Computer Applications Technology and Research Volume 2”– Issue 3, 367 – 373.

Public Service Commission, (2010). Assessment of State Human Resource Management in the Public Sector, Published in RSA by Public service Commission.

Republic of South Africa, White Paper on Human Resource Management in Public Service, December (1997).

Trevor, L. A, et al.(2008). Human Resource Management, Juta and Company Ltd.

Ivy Cummings-White & Ify S. Diala. (2013) “Knowledge Transfer in a Municipality Study on Baby Boomer Exodus from the Workforce.” International Journal of Computer Applications Technology and Research Volume 2”– Issue 3, 367 – 373.

Reisenwitz, T. H. and R. Iyer (2009). "Differences in generation X and generation Y: Implications for the organization and marketers." Marketing Management Journal 19(2): 91-103.

Zemke, R., et al. (2000). Generations at work: Managing the clash of Veterans, Boomers, Xers, and Nexters in your workplace, Amacom New York, NY.

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