Millennials currently make up 37% of the workforce. By 2025, this number will grow to 75%.
Millennials have a lot to offer employers. They are the most highly educated generation in western history, with 34% of 25 to 29 year-olds holding a bachelor’s, master’s, professional or doctoral degree. They are also entrepreneurial, team players, tech-savvy, creative, fast learners and good at multitasking. These skills are essential in today’s fast-moving business landscape.
However, employers have a hard time finding and retaining Millennials. Ninety-one percent of Millennials stay in a job for less than three years. This is because many companies promote out-dated and rigid working styles that are at odds with Millennials’ values.
According to a PWC study on Millennials at Work, this generation craves a management style and corporate culture that is different from anything that has gone before.
The study states, “The companies that have already been the most successful in attracting talented millennials – Google and Apple among them – are naturally innovative employers who are never restrained by ‘how things used to be done’. These companies are not specifically targeting millennials, but their culture, management style and approach to recruitment and retention naturally appeal to the millennial generation. And because of that, they are able to take their pick of the best younger talent around.”
Here are five things that can set your company apart, so you can find and retain the top Millennial talent:
MobilityMillennials don’t need to sit in a cubicle from nine to five to get their work done. Their office is on the road, in coffee shops and at home.
To be productive, Millennials require mobility. According to a CEO.com study, 22% of Millennials say they would be less likely to accept a job at a company in which mobile technology is not part of the standard working environment. Being able to submit their expenses while riding in the backseat of an Uber or filling out online timesheets while working from home gives Millennials the freedom to work from any location and at any time.
According to a study by Red Brick Research, 92% of Millennials want technology that they can access whenever and wherever they need it. When you offer this technology, you will be able to effectively attract and retain top talent.
Professional developmentMillennials value personal growth. In their free time, they watch educational videos on YouTube and take classes to learn new skills. A 2015 study found that Millennials rank “training and development” as the most important working benefit. This outweighed financial perks, such as cash bonuses and wage increases. Millennials aren’t motivated to work for someone for years if they never advance. In fact, the #1 reason why Millennials leave jobs is a lack of career opportunities.
Giving Millennials professional development opportunities allows them to learn new skills, feel more valued and advance in their careers. It’s also great for your business, as you’ll have more skilled employees. For example, you can send Millennials to industry conferences, provide them with on-the-job training or pay their tuition for a night course. You can also develop a mentorship program in your company, where your senior leaders mentor new hires.
When you purchase new applications, look for vendors who offer included support and training. By doing so, Millennials can take advantage of your apps and learn skills that will help them do their jobs better and more efficiently. Meanwhile your team can focus on what matters the most – not on training employees on how to use applications.
Interesting projects … not boring adminMillennials are a creative and plugged-in generation. Forcing them to adhere to out-dated administrative processes when they know that automated solutions are out there will frustrate them. Rigid processes also slow Millennials down and prevent them from making the most valuable use of their time.
Would you rather have your top developer create code or figure out where he put his timesheet?
Providing streamlined tools to handle administrative tasks (such as timesheets and expense reports) that, let's be honest, no one likes to do, can give you an advantage when attracting Millennial talent. The less time they spend on these tasks, the more time they can spend innovating for your business.
Social mediaMany companies still ban social media. While sites such as Facebook can distract employees and prevent them from getting their work done, social media has too many benefits to ignore.
According to McKinsey Global Institute, social media could add between $900 billion to $1.3 trillion to the economy. It does this by improving communications and collaboration. When used correctly, it can even boost workplace productivity. For example, your HR manager will use LinkedIn to connect with potential hires. Your developers rely on forums to grab code and learn new skills. Social media is also an essential marketing and sales tool – allowing you to promote your brand and connect with customers.
Social media is an integral part of Millennials’ lives. One minute, they’re tweeting your company’s latest blog post and the next they’re jumping to your timesheet app to submit their payroll. As masters of multitasking, they often use multiple apps and social networks simultaneously.
For many Millennials, social media is non-negotiable. A Cisco survey found that 56% of Millennials won’t work for companies that ban social media. And 33% of Millennials would choose social media freedom and device flexibility over a higher salary.
Work-life balanceMillennials are willing to work hard, but in return they want to balance their work commitments with their personal ones.
According to an EY study, Millennials are almost twice as likely as Baby Boomers to have a spouse or partner who works full time. This means that older workers are more likely to have a spouse or partner who can run the home, while Millennials need to manage both their jobs and homes. It’s not surprising that “Finding time for me” is the top challenge faced by Millennials who are both parents and managers. Another significant challenge is managing their personal and professional lives.
The EY study also found that Millennials would be willing to take a pay cut, forgo a promotion or move to manage work-life demands better. However, these drastic measures shouldn’t be necessary.
One way that Millennials can balance their work and family lives is through technology. For example, AP managers may want accounts payable software that lets them do the company expenses from home, so they can also look after a sick child. However, their boss may see an empty desk and think that they’re slacking.
To attract and retain Millennials, senior management must embrace new styles of working. They must let Millennials use technologies such as mobile devices, social media and business productivity apps so they can work from any location and at any time. Mobility increases Millennials’ job satisfaction and it will also boost employee productivity and the value that Millennials bring to your company.
Next StepsBy leveraging mobile solutions, such as Nexonia Expenses and Nexonia Timesheets, you can give employees the freedom to work remotely. These apps make it quick and easy to do administrative tasks, such as expense reporting and time tracking, which appeals to a Millennial workforce.
Related Reading: For the Road Warriors: Mobile Mileage
- professional development
- social media
- tech careers
- work-life balance
- young workforce