What millennials want

Employer advice

Millennials, the hotly debated and arguably berated generation, are taking over your workforce. With Deloitte's forecast that by 2025 75% of the global workplace will be dominated by Generation Y, it's time for organisations to find out what they want from their employer. You might be surprised by the results.

What are millennials asking for?

The 2017 Deloitte Millennial Survey revealed what was important to this generation in terms of the type of organisation and career they want. The key findings show a different side to millennials, one that isn't as narcissistic or full of self worth as may be believed.

Job security over job hopping

The assumption that millennials are the generation pushing flexible working and independent freelance positions does not quite ring true. Nearly two-thirds of millennials surveyed by Deloitte have opted for full-time employment over part-time or contract roles. And a quarter were concerned with unemployment. The reasons behind the answers were job security and fixed income. Millennials are becoming more loyal to their employers, opting for a safe position in a company than jumping into the unknown.

An organisation that supports causes

Millennials feel that as a generation they are responsible for a number of issues including social equality, protection of the environment and even the behaviour and actions of large businesses. They do not expect to tackle these on their own though. Millennials are looking to their employers in supporting and driving solutions to such matters.

Honest, cohesive and direct management

Millennials grew up to witness the Great Recession, where family members potentially lost their jobs and the future of employment seemed uncertain. They also watched the extremely controversial and suspicious governmental decision to join the Iraq War. These factors are two likely reasons why millennials want an employer who is transparent; open with their decision making and embrace a liberal approach to management compared to the traditional authoritarian style.

An attractive company doesn't depend on financial status

86% of Deloittes 2017 millennial survey respondents felt that a businesss success cannot be judged solely on financial performance. To be a favourable organisation in a millennial's eyes an organisation must actively support charity; invest in employee training and education and tackle the issues facing wider society, such as workplace equal opportunity.

IBM's Myths, Exaggerations and Uncomfortable Truths: The Real Story Behind Millennials in the Workplace report shed light on what managers need to provide in order to attract millennials. The top traits millennials, Generation X and Baby Boomers look for an employer - to make a positive impact on an organisation, help to solve social and environmental challenges and work within a diverse organisation were the same. Millennials are not as demanding or different as originally perceived.

Interestingly, whether a company was amongst the best in their market and achieving a work-life balance was the 1st and 2nd wants from Generation X workers. Posing the question that maybe the most demanding and hardest generation to satisfy is already in your workplace?

Are you looking at your former self?

Millennials are not a generation to be wary of or disregarded but is the reason why managers are doing so because they are looking at their former selves? Elspeth Reeve, a contributor to the US magazine publication, The Atlantic, commented that,

"It's not that people born after 1980 are narcissists, it's that young people are narcissists, and they get over themselves as they get older".

Senior members of an organisation may be facing the uncomfortable truth of how they once were when first entering the workforce, or they may have forgotten how they too were keen, confident and eager to succeed with a set of employer expectations. That can only be answered by the people in question yet it is clear that millennials are not wildly different from former generations who are already in the workplace.

Millennials want to make a positive impact, work in a diverse organisation and help to improve social and ecological issues through their company, which is no different to Generation X and Baby Boomers. The main difference is that millennials want to be heard and taken notice of, they are not going away without a fight and companies should embrace their independent spirit and belief, utilising this in the workplace.

Take note of what your employees want and make sure they don't look elsewhere for the opportunities and benefits you could have offered them find out what the key reasons are for employees looking elsewhere and how you stop them before it's too late with our blog on why staff leave.