The modern development of society is characterized by large-scale transformation processes, which are applied to all spheres of activity (Kliestikova et al., 2018). Therefore, to ensure accessibility and equal opportunities and the professional development of public servants, one has to create and dictate completely different requirements for training civil service employees (Nagy et al., 2018; Oláh et al, 2019). It is clear that today, in order to ensure effective reform of the system of public administration, one of the most important tasks is the formation of employees of the new generation.
The number of civil servants in Ukraine relative to the population is roughly equal to the average in the EU. However, the issues of trust and quality assurance in terms of the civil service is relevant. An important prerequisite for reforming the civil service is the gradual reduction of the number of employees as a result of a review of functions, the elimination of duplication of duties, the development of electronic services, the involvement of external specialists and/or temporary workers in certain types of work and so on. The introduction of integrated data management information systems and development will reduce the need for workers at lower levels of the hierarchy in the medium term, and workers will be more involved under temporary contracts. The prevalence of permanent employment in the civil service reduces the flexibility of the civil service system and increases the costs of its maintenance. Therefore, it is important to analyze the gender and age components, wages, working hours, functional responsibilities, the peculiarities of career development and so on. This will help to make the civil service system more transparent and more qualitative.
The reform of the civil service is aimed at re-loading the essence of state administration and building a European system oriented towards society. The new civil servant is a person who does not think about how to make non-standard decisions. That is why the combination of experience, knowledge, and the enthusiasm of representatives of different generations in the civil service becomes extremely important to ensure that it works effectively. The law of Ukraine “On Civil Service”, aimed at reducing the gender gap, protecting civil servants and increasing the effectiveness of work evaluation, was adopted in 2016. Reform of the civil service needs a fundamentally new class of professional and competent public servants, which is necessary for the realization of the national interests of Ukraine as a democratic, social state with a developed market economy. This is also explained by the change of generations taking place in public administration. After all, the development of Ukrainian society depends on the successful activation and integration of youth (representatives of Generation Z) in the sphere of public administration. Given these facts, the importance of the research is to analyze the peculiarities of representatives of Generations X, Y and Z and their respective component shares in the structure of civil service in the present and from a two-year perspective. This determines the change in the paradigm of both teaching and learning through the necessity of taking into account the professional requirements of new generations of public servants.
Representatives of Generation Z (Generation M, the Net Generation, the Internet Generation), as the main elements of heredity and generational change, play an important role in the reproduction of socio-structural and political components (Howe and Strauss, 2007). Based on an analysis of scientific literature (e.g., Goessling, 2017; Ikrath, 2018; Khoshtaria, 2018; Kliestikova et al., 2019), it has been established that, having much greater innovation potential than other generations, representatives of Generation Z will promote the progressive development of society in the case of successful integration into political life. For this reason, it is important to pay attention to the problem of the change of generations and its impact on raising the level of public administration. Having singled out the most important criteria forming the characteristics of the civil service, the common and distinctive features of Generations XYZ have been formed under the Generation Theory as depicted in Table 2 (Howe and Strauss, 2007).
In recent years, the national system of public administration has undergone rather complex and contradictory processes aimed at radical reform. The civil service is a complex, polyhedral and multifunctional phenomenon that can be considered in terms of various aspects (Figure 1).
The main vector of the transformation of public administration under the conditions of globalization is the professionalization of the civil service staff, since a central role in the civil service is assigned to a person (an employee). This should create a balanced, reliable and efficient modern system of public administration. The study of the main problems of public administration in terms of the effectiveness of its human resources was carried out by foreign scientists such as Androniceanu, 2011; Androniceanu and Abaluta, 2008; Veronesi et al., 2018; Manole, 2006; Nica and Popescu, 2010; Hooijberg and Choi, 2001; Horton, 2009; Werner, 2019; and Colebatch, 2017.
In many countries (Romania, the Czech Republic, Georgia, Chile and others), attempts are made to review the work of the state authorities in order to improve the quality and efficiency of civil services (Manole, 2006; Ochrana et al., 2017; Olavarria-Gambi, 2017). Similar processes are taking place in the Ukrainian society; therefore, the analysis of identical transformations of other countries gives an opportunity both to draw positive results and to anticipate and avoid the probable negative risks of this process for Ukraine. Consequently, it allowed the authors to conclude that there was a necessity for deeper studies of the abovementioned problems and the identification of solutions.
The civil service, like any other sphere of activity, faces the problem of changing generations. A number of scientists (Ikrath, 2018; Khoshtaria, 2018; Derado, 2016; Kolářová et al., 2016) have conducted research on the main types and motives of behavior, abilities and values of generations. According to the results of the literature review (Olavarria-Gambi, 2017; Ochrana et al., 2017; Kubíčková et al., 2018), in the context of reforming the civil service, heads of institutions should form teams of workers of different generations with different expectations and methods of work. This greatly complicates the selection of staff, the formation of teams, the choice of training programs and the motivation of employees, and so on.
The effectiveness of the civil service of Ukraine is characterized by the corresponding structural parameters. These parameters include: qualifications for public servants; number of public servants; gender balance; staff turnover; level of human resources management; automated system of management of human resources; and level of corruption and so on (Law of Ukraine, 2015). However, the study places emphasis on analyzing the quantitative component of the civil service in Ukraine in the line with the theory of generations. This problem was carefully studied by Howe and Strauss (2007), whose main conclusions relate to the analysis of changes in the values of generations of Americans. It should be noted that research on the change in the values of generations has not received proper attention from native scientists and practitioners in the field of public administration.
The theory of generations is closely linked with the economic cycles of the development of states: a rise, a period of stability, a recession, a crisis, then a rise again. Technologies are developing, society is changing, needs are growing, new professions and even entire industries are emerging and dying, but the historical cycles remain unchanged. Each of these periods affects the formation of the values of generations.
As noted above, the basis for conducting research is the theory of Generation XYZ (Howe and Strauss, 2007). It is well known that a generation is defined as a group of people born in one period (approximately 20 years), with its representatives experiencing the same key historical and social events. Chronological intervals vary from state to state, due to the fact that the economies of the world are developing differently. The periods covered by these demographic cohorts are as follows: Generation X (up to 1980); Generation Y (1981–1996); and Generation Z (after 1997) (Howe and Strauss, 2007; Lepeyko and Blyznyuk, 2016). The main characteristics that determine generations are as follows: age structure, specificity of historical experience, normative trajectory of professional socialization and cultural background.
Representatives of one generation not only combine economic or social contexts; they have their own system of values, priorities and personal attitudes to life, formed under the influence of many environmental factors of the era, and the change of these values is cyclical. This is also evident in political views, in relation to possible changes in public life (Table 1).
Characteristics and values inherent for representatives of generations
|GENERATION||HISTORICAL ASPECT||CHARACTERISTICS OF REPRESENTATIVES||VALUES OF REPRESENTATIVES OF THE GENERATION|
|X||The era of global political changes and the introduction of technological innovations||Able to think alternatively, to be self-developed, to be adopted. They know what difficulties, independence and survival are; they are energetic and responsible people.||Individualism, ability to compete, desire for professional growth, profitability, pragmatism, devotion to the cause|
|Y||Period of powerful technological progress, economic recovery||Representatives are characterized by high computer literacy, freedom of choice and broad interests. Representatives of the generation have the ability to learn, quickly adapt to changes, and participate in the corporate life of the company.||Respect personal freedom and independence, build a quick and successful career|
|Z||Digital era||Representatives of the generation are brought up with information technologies, quickly process information and orientate themselves in innovative developments, are interested in science, robotics so on.||Freedom, free communication, the perception of the world with enthusiasm|
Employees of Generation X are of significant value to the civil sector. It is not difficult to teach them and they do not need to re-learn, they have a large base of knowledge and experience orientation towards achieving a high level of performance, and are actively involved in the tasks of any activity (Kramer et al., 2019). Employees in this category show a high level of work efficiency if the organization has the prospect of stability, professional growth and proper motivation. They are ready to accept the conditions of corporate learning, as they know that they need to increase their competence to break through and survive in times of a sudden crisis or a global problem.
The employees of Generation X need to receive strategic information from the administration for explaining the objectives of the activity, involving them in the process of making managerial decisions regarding the prospects for the development of the structure. They make up the most dynamic group of public servants, but if they are not satisfied with the motivational programs, they will seek new opportunities even during the crisis, increasing their material welfare (Caponio, 2019; Jakobsen et al., 2019). Employees in this age group know what such difficulties are, and they are ready to overcome them, in spite of the circumstances (Emilio et al., 2019).
The employees from Generation Y aim for rapid career growth in accordance with their professional training and high rewards. The employees from Generation Y aim for rapid career growth in accordance with their professional training and high rewards (Bevan-Dye & Meyer, 2018).
Representatives of the respective generations are characterized by the development of several professions at the same time, at the expense of distance learning and coverage of several streams of diverse information (Goessling, 2017). Thus, an employee from Generation Y will actively work if the public structure is organized according to a clear and interesting corporate culture, the establishment of a mission statement, values and traditions.
Employees from Generation Z have freedom of choice. Representatives of this generation, first of all, aim to realize their capabilities, have freedom in choosing approaches to work and the appropriate motivation (Grasso et al., 2018). This is an indication that members of Generation Z will certainly not be interested in routine and monotonous work (Meyer-Sahling et al., 2018).
However, it is difficult for the above to be fully appreciated by Generation Z representatives of the civil service because they are still too young to fully show their talents and professional skills (Goessling, 2017). Technologies and values are changing at a rapid pace; as such, it is a complex task to predict what will be a priority for employees of Generation Z, who will serve the new generation, and whether the civil service will be attractive to them.
When studying this phenomenon, we may turn to a large-scale study in which 18,000 professionals and students from 19 countries were interviewed. Such a study was organized by four global institutions: INSEAD Emerging Markets Institute, Universum, MIT Leadership Center and the HEAD Foundation (Insead, 2019), which established important differences between the generations in such areas as work, careers, and business, which can help participants in the modern labor market to correctly build a human resources policy (Table 2).
Common and distinctive features of generations
|Leadership ambitions||Leadership is important for three generations|
|Coaching and mentoring||Freedom and responsibility|
|Interested in enterprise|
|Open own business||Work in an international company|
|Basic technologies||Software for project management||Cloud technologies and curriculum||Virtual reality|
|Conditions of work and study||Flexible working conditions|
|Online training||Personal communication|
|The question of vocation||All generations are worried about whether their work is right for them|
|Worried about a decent pension||A lack of opportunities for growth and instability of their position in the organization||Self-fulfillment|
The analysis of the structural parameters of the civil service of Ukraine proves that one of the important parameters is the number of civil servants in Ukraine, which should be investigated based on such features as gender, age and position. This is confirmed by the measures aimed at reforming public administration and modernizing the civil service, ensuring the optimization of the system of state bodies and increasing the efficiency of the state service by reducing the number of employees, which in turn will also contribute to an improvement in their qualifications (Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine, 2018).
In particular, the analysis of data on the number of public servants of Ukraine for the period from 2012 to 2017 has shown that the number of public servants in 2017 compared to 2012 had decreased by 69% (from 274,739 employees in 2012 to 84,484 employees in 2017) (Table 3).
Distribution of the number of public servants in Ukraine by gender, age and position for 2012–2017 (according to representatives of the generations)
|Categories||Number of persons||Age range (% of the total by the corresponding category)|
|> 35]||(35;45]||(45;55]||(55;59]||(59;64]||(64 <|
Gender equality is an indicator of gender imbalance in the civil service in 2017, on the basis of which it was established that the prevailing number – 77% (65,625 people) – of the total number of public servants (84,484 people) are women (of which 37% are executives and 63% are specialists) and only 22.3% (18,859 people) of the total number of public servants are men (of which 68% are executives and 32% are specialists).
With regard to the analysis of statistical information, starting from 2015, the change from representatives of Generation X to generation Y is fully traced in terms of categories of state servants under 35 years of age (22,243 total public servants from Generation Y, which is 27% in percentage terms). As for the representatives of Generation X, their proportion of the total number of state servants is 73%, or 60,929 people. However, if the representatives of Generation Y consider that only colleagues from their generation will dominate the state structure, this is in fact not the case. Representatives of Generation X will surely meet them on their way, as executives, employees or clients.
To some extent, combining today's twentysomethings and thirtysomethings in a single Generation Y is not entirely suitable, since there are significant differences and contradictions between them that indicate the beginning of the formation of a new circle of social evolution. The formation of Generation Y was influenced by two political systems at the same time. By 1990, the generation was formed on the values of one system; as of 1991, Generation Y was formed during the period of independence. Also, the development of mobile and Internet technologies, as well as financial and economic crises, influenced their perception of the world, among other things.
According to the data presented, representatives of Generations X and Y dominate the state service today – they constitute the lion's share of employees of any state structure (Table 3). Thus, the study of the analyzed period (2012–2017) indicates that, at that time, the basis of the civil service was formed by the representatives of Generation X and their predecessors, since according to the age category, including those aged between 35 and 64, 100% of civil servants were mostly related to Generation X.
Given the deliberations presented, the main objective of the study is to confirm the hypothesis of the dependence of the reform of the civil service on the effective interaction and cooperation of all generations of public servants. To achieve this goal, the following tasks were set: to predict the dynamics of changes in the number of public servants in Ukraine; to analyze the composition of public servants by gender and age; and to make predictions about changes in the number of public servants of Ukraine by 2020. The authors used the following research methods: comparative analysis and generalization, system and statistical analysis, graphical and tabular, as well as economical and mathematical modeling. The study of the dependence of the change in the share of the state servants of Ukraine by age categories up to 2020, with the use of correlation-regression analysis, allowed the researchers to form the following model:
The forecasted changes in the number of civil servants in 2020 has been made on the basis of the application of economical and mathematical modeling. The research is based on the period from 2012 to 2017. The largest number of civil servants (in terms of year) was in 2012 (Figure 2). Beginning from 2013, there was a significant reduction in the number of civil servants (in comparison with 2012, the number has decreased by a factor of more than two). The reason for this phenomenon was the relatively unsuccessful attempt to reform the civil service. The adoption and entry into force of the Law “On Civil Service” has become a major achievement of Ukraine in reforming the civil service and is, in fact, the first serious political step on this path. The active implementation of the Strategy for the Reform of Public Administration of Ukraine, which began in 2017, showed that the government approached the real reform of the public administration system seriously and thoroughly, especially in terms of the available resources and the political situation in Ukraine.
The Government of Ukraine planned to develop and approve a method for conducting transparent operational monitoring of the number of employees of state administration and expenses related to their remuneration in order to reform the remuneration system and optimize the number of employees, taking into account the functions and organizational structure of public administration in 2017. However, in the Strategy for the Reform of Public Administration of Ukraine (2016–2020), detailing the stages of the implementation of the Action Plan, it was indicated that the task would be carried out in 2016 on the basis of the launch of the collection of automated data on the quantitative composition of the civil service (National Agency of Ukraine for Civil Service, 2017). Thus, it should be noted that the study can become an important element of the methodology for monitoring the number of employees, taking into account the peculiarities of the change of generations.
Following the dynamics of the age structure up to 35 years, one can conclude that in 2014, the share of public servants decreased by a factor of almost two when compared to 2012.
On the whole, then, it is difficult to talk about the activity of Generation Y in the public sphere. This is probably due to the general negative public perception of the civil service, which was formed under the influence of various factors. Also, the negative image of the political environment of the state is considered to have played a role.
Moreover, beginning in 2017, there was a trend of expansion and change of generations in the sphere of business activity. This is evidence of a unique period when the representatives of three generations - Generation X, Generation Y and Generation Z – will work simultaneously.
As a result of the calculations, the parameters were established, and are shown in Figure 3. The tightness of the relationship between the variables is estimated by the determination coefficient and on average R2 = 0.996806 for different age categories. This means a 97% change in the share of public servants by age category by 2020, which is a reason to consider expanding the circle of Generation XYZ in the civil service by 2020.
However, the values, preferences and ways of thinking of these generations are different (also in Figure 3).
Based on the calculations, Generation Z will comprise approximately 40% of the total number of public servants in Ukraine by 2020. This is evidence of the fact that members of Generation Z will become active members of the public and society, gain qualifications, enter professions and understand the future prospects that are open to them. Therefore, it is necessary now to realize when freedom of action is necessary, and when assistance is to be given, taking into account their peculiarities.
A significant share of the total number of public servants of Ukraine will belong to Generations X and Y (also in Figure 4) and will amount to 60% of the total number of public servants in Ukraine by 2020. In this case, effective interaction and cooperation between all generations is important. To activate the state sphere of activity, it is necessary to create effective mechanisms for using the experience gained by Generations X and Y (Podolchak and Gavrylyuk, 2013).
This can only be achieved by creating an appropriate atmosphere in public institutions in which employees can share their acquired knowledge under the conditions of non-formal learning. In many industries, leaders are trying to create all the conditions for an active exchange of knowledge in the processes of work (Karkovska and Vasiunyk, 2016). The public sphere is no exception; on the contrary, it is extremely necessary therein. Since the effectiveness of public administration depends on achieving the best results at optimal costs, the state authorities must build a professional, prestigious, motivated public service – oriented to a new generation – accordingly (Hora, 2018).
The main mistake within both private and public structures is the use of template training for employees, which is based essentially on a forced form and is accompanied by an artificial manner of transmitting information.
The trends analyzed indicate that in 2020, the share of public servants under the age of 35 will be 45% of the total (Figure 3). This means that a significant proportion of this category of employees will be representatives of Generation Z. Misunderstandings in the perception of political life may logically arise between generations, due to the different viewpoints, which may be attributed to a particular generation: X, Y or Z. Each generation was raised in periods of certain economic and social circumstances that formed its attitude towards money, work, luxury and so on.
According to the Copenhagen and Madrid criteria, any country that wishes to accede to the EU must create conditions for the proper fulfillment of the tasks facing the EU Member State, such as the use of its acquis communautaire. The proper functioning of state bodies is possible given the implementation of the basic legal principles of the EU – democracy and the rule of law. The incorporation of the principles of good governance and the principles of the European administrative space in public administration in Ukraine is in line with the tasks of administrative reform in Ukraine.
The main tendencies in improving the management of foreign countries are: improving the efficiency of the civil service, improving the efficiency and effectiveness of the policy-making system, optimizing the structural and functional characteristics of the management system, and reforming the income and expenditure management system of the state sector. The analysis can be the basis for the effective reform of the civil service and the issue of interaction of civil servants of different generations in labor relations.
The ultimate result is the basis for evaluating civil servants in the countries of Western Europe and the United States. The new law “On Civil Service” introduced an evaluation of the activities of civil servants based on clear indicators. An assessment of the efficiency of civil servants is an innovative practice at the international level (Center for Economic Strategy, 2017). One should, however, underline that Western countries have begun to implement this idea in the civil service in the last 10–20 years. Such an approach contributes to building trust within the civil service, enabling the disclosure of the potential of each employee and ensuring the transparency of the civil service. The experience of wage reform in the public sector of different countries has shown that the use of a competitive model of human resources management increases flexibility in adjusting the number of employees in public administration (through more widespread use of time contracts in contrast to countries with a career model that provides for the permanent employment of employees).
Compared to the size, number and administrative structure of the states in Ukraine, the relative number of civil servants is larger. This may indicate an excessive number of employees in the public sector, but any conclusion about redundancy or the lack of workers can only be made by analyzing the number of workers in certain functional groups (tax collection, provision of social services, etc.), and in particular, the structure of civil servants based on Generations X, Y and Z. In particular, Poland, Romania, Italy and Hungary (on average 0.4% of the employed population) have a significantly lower share of employment at this level of government than in Ukraine (1.2%) (Center for Economic Strategy, 2017). Countries with a larger proportion of central government officials are generally smaller than Ukraine. This may be explained by the fact that the number of civil servants at the central level is not directly proportional to the size of the country (both in terms of territory and population), since both large and small countries need to be served, for example, by the army and the diplomatic corps. In countries where the contract model of personnel management (Finland, the Netherlands, and Sweden) is widespread, the percentage of the employed population employed at the central level of government (1.6%) is higher than in Ukraine.
The research may be the basis for the effective reform of the civil service and the issue of interaction of civil servants of different generations in labor relations. As predicted, changes in the structure of civil servants based on Generations X, Y and Z will help to select the right combinations of criteria for evaluating effectiveness, the priorities of competencies, the motivation of civil servants and so on.
This research has made it possible to establish that, under the conditions of reforming the state service of Ukraine, the change of the vector of development of public servants, their mobility and innovation, and the responsiveness to the challenges of the state and society in order to provide high-quality services is extremely important. To confirm the dependence of the change in the share of public servants in Ukraine by age category by 2020, the possibilities of correlation-regression analysis were applied. On the basis of the analysis conducted, in order to ensure an effective transformation of the structure of civil service of Ukraine, it is necessary to form effective mechanisms of cooperation of representatives of different generations, as this will contribute to the effectiveness, efficiency and operability of the civil service.
Another important conclusion of the research conducted is that the results of the research indicate differences in the views of generations that relate to the fact that technology helps or interferes with work, which is manifested in the fact that older people consider technology an obstacle, while Generation X-ers consider it helpful. Representatives of Generation Z, in turn, talk about the benefits of technology. However, the representatives of all three generations agree that digital capabilities are the future.
Consequently, the main directions of activity of the state institutions in which employees of the new generation will work will be aimed at innovation. The promotion of creativity, freedom, and a non-standard approach to tasks are the key guiding principles. The main motivation is the ability to work on important and interesting projects, for example, the creation of unique technologies for solving global issues and so on.
The state institutions should become intellectualized, seeking to ascertain as much new information about the formation of human resources as possible, in accordance with changes in the internal and external environment. The analysis of the internal environment of the state institutions should be aimed at the possibility of achieving a balance between its participants and improving the efficiency of the decisions taken. The study of the environment should be accompanied by the desire and ability to meet the public's demands, defend the interests of the state development and increase the effectiveness of interaction with the international environment, and so on. Government agencies will be able to work effectively only by understanding their own capabilities and relations with the participants in the environment.
Developing an effective governance system in Ukraine requires the use of global experience. Ukrainian acceptance of a course towards European integration involves the integration of Ukraine's state administration into European administrative space (Center for Economic Strategy, 2017). The comparison of the sources of management system formation in the EU and in Ukraine makes it possible to determine the current problems facing public administration in Ukraine. The theoretical understanding of the development of the governance system in the EU is the basis for developing the theoretical framework for improving public administration in Ukraine.
To sum up, the problems outlined above dictate the urgent need for an impartial study of the genesis of the management system in the EU and its contemporary peculiarities in the context of its use as the basis for improving public administration in Ukraine. Indeed, a significant problem encountered by the researchers is the lack of data on the civil service of Ukraine during its diagnosis. Data sets are not standardized, and their data is often incomplete. To overcome this problem, one needs to create a central information system for the civil service.
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