Choose your own working hours. Choose where you work. Choose going to the gym in the middle of the day. Choose working at a cafeteria. Choose replying emails around midnight. Choose taking a conference call right before scuba diving during vacation. Born between 1982 and 1996, millennials at work are becoming the majority rather than the office newbie, and they are changing the working environment with a very different set of rules and ethics. Cubicles and the traditional 9 to 5 are not for them.
Flexibility for millennials at work
Millennials do not feel anchored to their desk or to a strict schedule. Flexibility, such as remote working possibilities, is highly appreciated. Constantly connected, they can set up their office anywhere and answer late phones calls or reply to emails while sitting on their couches or preparing dinner.
Work to live and not live to work. Millennials want to accommodate their work schedule around their personal life. For example, they might be in the office in the mornings and work a few hours from home in the evening after working out in the gym or running a few errands. In fact, when choosing a job, millennials place work-life balance over opportunities to progress.
Down with the walls. That fancy corner office is no longer a reward. Nor the privacy of a cubicle is wanted. Millennials appreciate open spaces to boost collaboration and transparency. Companies need to balance this noisier environment with additional spaces for brainstorming, creative work or to simply relax and discuss.
The right kind of technology
Millennials grew up having technology in their homes and their hands as soon as they were born. They are avid users of social networks and apps to handle anything from their to-do list to their communication. Companies must embrace the latest gadgets and offer their young employees the desired technology. As a result, business applications and processes are adopting consumer trends. Many companies go as far as considering a ‘bring your own device’ policy to boost productivity.
When traveling for work, millennials are opting for bleisure, combining business and leisure in the same trip. Their business trips are extended with a one or two days of holidays, and vacation might include conference calls.
The job-hopping generation
Millennials do not expect a luxury wristwatch as a long service award. Also called the job-hopping generation, millennials are the group most likely to switch jobs. A recent Gallup report reveals six in ten millennials are open to new job opportunities, and 21% of them changed jobs within the past year, which is more than three times the number of non-millennials who report the same.
Keeping your millennials at work happy
Millennials in your workplace offer a vast range of benefis. They’re future thinkers, tech savy, and offer opportunity to keep your business as up to date as it needs to be to sell to a changing and evolving customer-base. Here’s a few ideas on how to attract and keep your new workforce.
- Allow flexible working hours – Businesses operate globally and suppliers are located anywhere in the world. Having staff ready to work after hours can help your company function 24/7. Allowing flexibility on a 9am start may encourage more commitment to that 11pm US call.
- Encourage millennials to be as tech-savvy as they want – With their natural inclination to technology, millennials know their preferred working setup. They might prefer Snapchat over email, but don’t limit their efficiency with antiquated environments. Assess them on their performance and ability to deliver – not the tools they choose to use.
- Embrace their innovative thinking skills – Growing up in the internet era, the millennial generation thinks differently. Pick their brains to discover new ideas for your business.
- Strive to give them ownership – Millennials are eager to learn and lead. Give them opportunity and freedom to develop new ideas.