Millennials: Workforce of the future

By 2020, Millennials are predicted to make up half of the American workforce, and by 2025, a massive 75% of the global workforce.

Why is this important? Because compared to Baby Boomers, Millennials expect more from their employers and if you want to retain the best talent in your business, you need to learn to adapt. 

“More” doesn’t mean higher pay, more holidays or a better pension, what Millennials truly desire are things like personal growth and flexibility. These might sound like a hassle to employers used to traditional hiring, but there’s actually a mutual benefit to Millennials demands. A recent Udemy report conducted with more than 1,000 US adults aged between 21 and 37 found 42% noted learning and development as the single most important benefit when deciding where to work.

“Millennials are eager to enhance their skill sets, and employers must provide learning resources if they want to bring millennials on board and, more importantly, keep them there,” said Shelley Osborne, head of learning and development at Udemy. By supporting Millennials desire to learn, companies actually benefit because they’re more likely to retain their employees and see increased productivity thanks to their newly acquired skills – it’s a win-win all round! 

Millennials want to learn

Another area Millennials want improvements in, is work-life balance. America is officially the most overworked country in the world. As well as working long hours and often multiple jobs, Americans rarely take a break. This culture has led to an incredibly stressed society that is missing out on the fruits of their labour. Millennials want to grow and develop in their job roles but also have the time to relax.

Tied into this point is Millennials desire to be able to work flexibly. According to a Deloitte study, nearly 75% of Millennials believe that a “work from home” or “work remotely” policy is important. This huge figure shows how the traditional office set up will soon no longer be a part of the working landscape. Millennials want flexibility – it gets rid of long commutes, cuts costs and actually increases productivity! Businesses need to consider modernising their current practices if they want to succeed. If you aren’t offering flexibility, the stats show your future Millennial employees probably won’t stick around for long. 

The final area the future Millennial workforce crave is increased emotional intelligence. More and more companies are already leaving behind the traditional attitude of “leave your personal life at home” and for good reason. Soft skills have long been ignored in business but their benefit is substantial. When employees feel valued, they’re much more likely to be focused, productive and less likely to leave. Mindfulness training is something many companies now offer to help employees decrease their stress and improve their communication. When you have an open team who aren’t afraid to share their thoughts and concerns, you’ll have a stronger relationship that will lead to greater retention, motivation and productivity. 

Work/life balance is extremely important

With the workforce soon being overrun with Millennials, it’s never been more vital for businesses to modernise. By providing the flexibility, education and emotional intelligence that Millennials need, companies will massively improve their retention, output and communication. Don’t let your business suffer by being too slow to adapt. You need to be able to appeal to Millennials if you want your business to thrive, otherwise you risk losing talent and putting your business in unnecessary danger.

Take the time to compare what your business currently offers employees and the key things Millennials look for above. Then, make a plan for how you can introduce these things into your business if you don’t already offer them.

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