A Closer Look at Millennials in the Workplace

Millennials are the most studied generation—yet many companies aren’t tuning in on what motivates this group. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, “by 2030 Millennials will make up 75% of the workforce.” As the number of Millennials entering the workforce continue to rise it is employers' responsibility to figure out what attracts them to jobs. The three main areas Millennials are differing compared to other generations are with their use of technology, personal values, and desire to grow. Let’s examine these motives a little more closely!

Utilizing Technology

Millennials grew up in a generation of change and technological evolution. Their ability to navigate the most advanced technology produces a connected and well-versed generation. Many Millennials are drawn to positions that wouldn’t even exist without recent technological transformations, for example: computer science, computer engineering, cyber security, IT, and more. Even if your industry differs from these listed, technology is being utilized in almost every field. If we turn to the health care industry, physical copies of files are being converted to online databases. In marketing, advertising efforts have shifted from billboards and newspaper ads to interactive social media campaigns. Millennials are the ones innovating these changes and they aren’t afraid of the transformation the future may bring.

Additionally, these technological advances have formed the ability to work outside of a traditional office setting and to adopt a more flexible schedule. For a generation that grew up in unconventional household settings, this attribute is highly valued for many.

Sharing Similar Values

A change that has been detected among Millennials choice in work versus earlier generations is that salary is not their biggest motivator. In fact, Millennials gain greater satisfaction in knowing that the organization they work for holds the same values as them. In a highly competitive market both employees and consumers, for the most part, choose to devote their loyalty to the organization of their choice. Companies that donate to charitable causes, abide by environmentally friendly practices, and promote work-life balance are likely going to stand out in the eyes of employees and customers rather than businesses that do not place value on these values. Of course, values do vary on an individual basis and whichever ethical principles are of importance to you personally, you will likely seek out in the workplace.

Room to Grow

Millennials often ask questions during interviews such as—what are my chances for growth within this organization? This is a question many Generation Xers wouldn’t dare bring up to a hiring manager in past roles. The bottom line is Millennials are very cognizant of what they want and where they want to be in the future. Stability is no longer the number one motivator for this age cohort, rather they are more concerned about how much of an impact they’re making in the company and how quickly they can grow.

Millennials have somewhat of a bad reputation when it comes to the workforce. But as an employer it is important to leverage this generation's strengths and adapt your business practices accordingly. After all, they aren’t getting any younger!


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