Below what you are going to see is the traditional tractor control configuration for a typical Caterpillar tractor. Just from a quick cursory look I have to admit it looks a little difficult to operate with all of those handles and would probably take some training. The problem is that the Gen Y worker of today looks at that set-up and it doesn’t make sense to them or look attractive for work. Recognizing the problem and realizing today’s up and coming generations expect different approches to work. Caterpillar did a redesign.
What you will now see below is Caterpillar’s attempt to make a tractor that a Gen Y’r would be more comfortable operating. And – yes it does look more appealing because it looks as much like a video game set-up as anything else. I guess the next step for companies like Nintendo, Microsoft, and Sony is to help companies redesign their antiquated systems to look and run more like a video game. Maybe we could introduce live high scoring for accuracy into the screen of the tractors so the driver can compete with others doing the same job (surely I am jesting — or am I?). Ultimately though Caterpillar is doing the right thing, they are recognizing the trademarks of Gen Y and designing equipment to fit. When companies recognize that you cannot undue generational distinctives it puts them yards ahead against their competitors in the battle for recruiting and retention.