The first digitally-native generation is dominating the workplace more and more each day. Millennials are projected to comprise 75 percent of the global workforce by 2025. Although all generations face challenges as they enter the labour force, this generation is different from its predecessors since they grew up in a time when the digital revolution was starting to become the new norm.
Compared with baby boomers, who were happy and content with working for a pay check and semi-occasional recognition from their work accomplishments, millennials are after something more. They expect and set entirely new standards of employment experience from their employers.
Though boomers and generation X-ers might roll their eyes at millennials for wanting the best of both worlds, millennials have proved they are essential in the workforce, driving every employer to adapt to these demands to enjoy the full millennial productivity.
The biggest misconception about millennials is they prefer remote work than an in-person office. That is not entirely true. To guide employers on how to recruit and eventually retain members of this generation, here are eight research-backed insights about what millennials want from their work.
Flexible Work Pattern
Millennials do not necessarily want to work from home, but what this generation of employees want is the flexibility of their work schedule ━ they can work at convenient hours and be able to do it where they want. According to a FlexJobs survey, a flexible working arrangement is the number one reason why 70 percent of millennials consider moving jobs.
Millennial job seekers are noted for prioritizing a healthy work-life balance when looking for employment. The traditional nine to five workplace practice no longer works for millennials. This generation prefers to maximize the use of their time. They want to earn while doing other creative and productive tasks, such as doing a side hustle or taking care of their family.
Millennial employees find it challenging to be productive in a traditional office setting where isolation is encouraged. Gone are the days when cubicles and corner offices are the trends. Millennials prefer a more modern office interior design that nurtures collaboration, flexibility, and sustainability. Open floor plans, ergonomic workspaces, and natural lighting are what millennials expect in an office.
Apart from having modern office facilities, millennials expect their work environment to be tech-savvy. Being the first generation to grow up with the Internet, it is not surprising that this generation understands the importance of technology and the need to maximize its use in every aspect of their life.
It is a must for companies to incorporate digital technological advancements in their workplace since millennial employees value communal workspaces, remote working, and telecommuting to work. Employers who readily provide these technological advances to their millennial employees will indeed thrive.
A Teamwork Culture
The majority of millennials agree that it is essential to work in an organization that has a fun office culture. The biggest factor that would make a millennial employee quit a job is toxicity in the work environment. Unlike previous generations who prefer separating their work life from their private one, millennials value interaction with their co-workers and enjoyment of their workplace.
Apart from providing strong leadership and guidance, millennial employees expect their employers to provide timely and regular recognition of their accomplishments. Acknowledging millennial employees during meetings for their contributions makes them further motivated to put more effort into their work. Besides, it lessens the likelihood of millennial employees quitting their job.
Other than office recognition, another great way of showing appreciation to millennial employees for their productivity is by developing a rewards system. Millennials enjoy receiving incentives for a job well done. Rewards can be a spa day, free lunch, event tickets, a headphone, paid Uber rides, or just any office perks.
No Typical Company Hierarchy
The traditional top-down management style does not work for the majority of millennials. Since this generation is used to team activities and group projects, encouraging collaboration in the office environment is crucial. Millennial employees want their opinions and ideas to be heard and considered. Open communication in the workplace not only harnesses new and innovative ideas but also motivates employees to give their best.
Work with a Purpose
Contrary to stereotypes that millennials are self-entitled and lazy, this generation is composed of individuals who wanted to make a positive impact on the environment and society. Accordingly, millennials wanted to work in an organization that serves for some meaningful purpose rather than just gain profit. To retain your millennial employees in your workforce, highlight how your company gives back to society.
Salary and Benefits
Millennials want an excellent salary and benefits package, but it does not mean they work solely for money. Apart from professional growth, millennial employees want to work in companies that help them grow professionally. While traditional employee benefits are a must, millennials are more attracted to companies that offer non-traditional benefits, such as napping rooms, in-house gyms, and cafeterias with organic and vegan food options.
Hiring millennial employees is no longer a new trend since this generation are now at the prime of their life. These insights are valuable for companies that genuinely want to maintain an active workforce composed of millennial and gen Z employees and reduce the attrition rate.