Top 4 things that millennials want from their workplace

Posted 29-Jul -2019

India has the highest population of millennials in the world, which also constitute the larger part of the Indian workforce. According to a recent study by SHRM, by 2020, millennials are projected to be 50% of the workforce and by 2025, this number is expected to reach by 75%.
As millennials’ presence gets stronger in the workplace, it becomes vital for businesses to understand their preferences which are different from their predecessors. Here’s a look at the top 4 expectations of millennials that employers should know in order to build a future-ready workplace.

1. Flexibility: A fat paycheck is no more a motivating factor for this freedom-seeking generation that strives to strike a perfect work-life balance. With the mantra of “You Only Live Once”, millennials want seamless integration of their careers into their lives, instead of their lives revolving around their work. Over three-quarters of Indian respondents in a job portal, Shine.com survey said they should have a work-from-home option. A good work-life balance (leveraged for sports, hobbies, fitness, travel, socialising, freelancing, entrepreneurship) is the top reason millennials do not want a 9 to 5 routine out of a cubicle.

2. Noble Employers: Apart from a good work profile, millennials intend to work for good companies. Brand culture, values and intent matter a lot to millennials who want to contribute to the society and the environment. Priorities and aspirations of millennials have evolved with 75% of millennials ready take a pay cut to work for a socially responsible company and 76% of millennials consider a company’s social and environmental commitments before deciding where to work, according to a study by Cone Communications. Millennials look forward to making a difference through their employers’ vision.

3. Flat Hierarchy: Millennials prefer a flat management structure where people are approachable as they dislike the idea of navigation through multiple levels to get things done. With the desire to learn and grow, millennials want to work in a collaborative environment with managers and executives who are open to ideas and experiments in exchange of experience and guidance. With an entrepreneurial mindset, 66% of millennials want to have a greater say in the running of their workplace, according to a study by City & Guild group. They do not want to be a victim of micromanagement and wish to know the relevance of the work they are given rather than accepting it at the face value. At the 2012 SHRM Annual Conference, Malcolm Gladwell said that millennials are more about “the network” than “the hierarchy”. They care less about titles, status and salaries. They are more drawn to projects that connect with their strengths and abilities, which is a good sign for companies to compete comprehensively in this fast-paced business environment.

4. Technology: Since millennials are the first generation to be born in a digital era, they are tech-savvy and consume technology in a different way to previous generations. Millennials, more than any other generation in the workforce, are adept enough to quickly pick up new technology and master it. They can adapt to new business tools much quicker than senior employees, which is a huge advantage for companies in a fast-paced environment with continuously changing technology. When communicating, they favour social networking and text messages as an instant, quick form of communication. They are less likely to embrace formal communication like telephone and face-to-face interactions and would rather prefer FaceTime. SurveyMonkey and Microsoft reported that 93% of millennial workers say that a business having up-to-date technology is an important factor when choosing a workplace. Therefore, investing in the latest technology is critical for companies to attract and retain millennial talent.

Millennials own the future and many employers have now realised their growing need of working flexibly by allowing them to work from home or co-working spaces and also started hiring millennials as gig workers on project-basis. As per the research by Noble House, 70% of firms including MNCs and startups hired freelancers in 2018 and companies like Intel, SAP, Xerox, UHG are offering remote working for mid-level to highly skilled roles as per Flexjobs. IT and Business Consultants like Accenture, EY and Wipro are heavily investing in automation, upskilling their workforce, building a network of expert gig workers and encouraging free-spirited start-up culture to hire and engage the millennial workforce.

It’s high time for every organisation to understand and embrace this dynamic generation of millennials and build a future-ready workplace.

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