By this next year of 2020, Millennials are said to comprise half of the American workforce. By the year 2025, roughly 75% of the global workforce will be Millennials. They are no longer up-and-coming: they are here. Anyone born between 1981 and 1996 (ages 23 to 38 in 2019) is considered a Millennial (pewresearch.org). The “job” and “workplace” as we now know it is evolving into something completely different and for some, unrecognizable. Tools and technology that are used in the office are changing, and therefore the workspace and culture of companies are completely altering as well.
The significance of culture cannot be stressed enough – “It affects or defines the ability of the leadership and employees to relate to each other for the common good of the organization and operate within a mutually agreed and acceptable boundary of cultural values and emotional interface” – (Entrepreneur.com). Culture means everything, and the culture of organizations will be directly shaped by this generation’s habits and expectations.
Despite a reputation for being lazy, self-centered, and noncommittal to their employers, research and surveys have affirmed that Millennials are actually motivated and driven by numerous things. According to a recent Deloitte Millennial Survey, Millennials desire roles that offer purpose and the opportunity to change their personal and professional environment. How do they want to make their impact? As stated by The Future Workforce Study, the answer is through technology.
Millennials have been exposed to technology and have had more screen time than any other generation in history. As it has become completely incorporated into their everyday lives, Millennials no longer ask for competent technology at their work; they expect it. While this expectant behavior may be seen as entitlement, Millennial workers are really just wanting the tools needed to perform their job efficiently.
As this tech-dependant generation is close to representing more than half of the global workforce, organizations are looking for cutting-edge tools to meet their employees’ needs. One of the most essential needs is personal and career development through learning programs (Forbes.com).
In a recent poll by Gallup, 87% of Millennials surveyed claimed professional development was an imperative part of their job. This desire to learn and grow is a key trait that separates Millennials from previous generations in the workplace. Learning management systems, certification programs, and workplace training opportunities are not just attractive benefits, but absolutely necessary in engaging and retaining these employees.
Learning management systems have the ability to enhance training programs and help with certifications through video, audio trainings, and quizzes. These strategies are critical in retaining this group of employees, because although they have a reputation for moving from job to job, Millennials have a record of remaining with organizations that offer personal and professional development opportunities.
In addition to these personal and professional development opportunities, Millennials crave and require feedback and communication. This generation has experienced the accelerated evolution of communication through technology. Immediate response time of text messages, instant messengers, and group chat applications are not just for personal matters, but are now an employee demand (Paycom).
Millennials and technology are undoubtedly changing the workforce. In this era of rapid changes, it is important to understand how technology has become an integral part of Millennials’ goals to impact this world of change. Do not wait – give your workforce the technology they need to innovate and change the world in ways previous generations would not even dream of.