In recent years, as the newer generations have been entering the workforce, changes have also been made to ensure retention and employee satisfaction. The younger generations have been entering adulthood with different values and different needs than prior generations. While some of the older professionals are seeing the younger generations as unreliable and disloyal in their positions (60 percent leaving within three years of being hired), what it really is, is that younger generations are not willing to settle for a job that makes them unhappy. The younger generations believe that to have a good life, it is necessary to achieve success and recognition in a career, have a good balance between work and life, enjoy enough quality time with family and friends, and achieve personal goals and dreams. They believe these statements at a much higher rate than older generations.
The days of the traditional 9-5 in-office schedule are in the past. Younger generations grew up watching their parents work long days, deal with a bad commute, and come home irritable and missing out on events. They grew up with a model that they don’t want to mirror. Flexibility doesn’t only refer to hours, it also refers to their ability to work from home when needed/wanted. Being able to work remotely when life gets crazy, or when they need to get away from the office, or simply because it’s a convenient and awesome offer, is a very important thing for them. Younger generations value traveling and spending time with family and friends, both which are made easier by having the flexibility to work remotely. Another aspect of flexibility is in terms of project opportunities – specifically growth in their role. They don’t want to be doing to same mundane thing every single day, they want to have the flexibility and freedom to help with other departments and projects and learn new things within their position.
It’s not true that younger generations don’t want to stay with companies, but it is true that they are picky! If they are going to stay with a company for a long time, they want to know that there will be room for growth within their position and within their career in general. One things the younger generations hate is standing still. They don’t just want growth in their position and growth in their career, they want to have the opportunity to have growth with continued education and training in the workplace. Effectively onboarding and providing Millennials with opportunities to learn and develop will further help you retain Millennial employees. Offering opportunities such as learning programs, continued education, or tuition reimbursement. Feeling like an employer cares about an employees continued education and skill set is a huge winner in the book.
Culture in the Workplace
Culture is important to younger generations. When it comes to the workplace, younger generations are the happiest when they feel cared about, and connected to their coworkers and business associates. 70% of millennials specifically say that they want the people they work with to function as a sort of second family. Having this type of “family” or community at work, also comes along with having an appreciation and value for workers and their diversity. A lot of younger people look for companies that offer programs such as donation matching, or different events and inclusions within their community. Social responsibility is an important factor, and volunteer opportunities can be a huge deciding factor when job hunting. Young people want to know their company cares about the community, because a lot of younger people feel that where they work and how their place of work interacts with the community reflects their own values and views as well.