The millennial generation, comprised of those born between 1981 and 1997, are on the fast track to comprise the majority of today’s workforce. In fact, millennials are expected to constitute 75 percent of the workforce by 2025, giving businesses even more reason to learn the unique qualities and needs of millennials in order to attract and retain these quality employees.
Millennials are considered the most diverse generation in U.S. history with the most college degrees and the most debt. This may be why millennials consider compensation, flexible work schedules and the opportunity to make a difference high on their list of job priorities. 88 percent of millennials prefer a collaborative work environment instead of a competitive one. In fact, employee-management conflicts are the primary reason why millennials quit their jobs. Add this to the fact that more than 60 percent ages 22 to 32 have changed jobs one to four times in the last five years, and it becomes clear that millennials think the current corporate structure is inadequate.
Part of this generation’s yearning to change the traditional hierarchy of a company has led them to have certain requirements of their employers. The key to retaining this generation of employees is providing coaching and feedback in the workplace. 69 percent of millennials currently believe their corporate review process is flawed because they don’t receive feedback consistently throughout the year. They understand being judged and assessed, but they want to have clear and consistent job assessment criteria.
Millennials bring several traits to the workplace that previous generations have not acquired. Since they were born with early access to computers, they are tech-savvy. They are also socially conscious, civic minded and they want a job where they can make a difference. Millennials are innovators and they bring an entrepreneurial mind-set to the workplace. In fact, 29 percent of all entrepreneurs were millennials in 2011 and they created 160,000 start-ups each month! Innovation is a valuable trait in employees to keep your business competitive in today’s ever-changing market.
For companies to attract millennial candidates, they should tweak their recruiting process to emphasize more of the potential employees’ needs. Businesses should start by offering a competitive salary and provide opportunities for employees to rise up the corporate ladder. Companies should also create an open and friendly environment where business decisions are discussed among employees to create a trusting atmosphere. To retain these individuals, business will need to make work challenging, fun and exciting as well as create a sense of community among employees.
While this generation is still young, they have great potential to provide your company with the necessary ideas and skills to expand. To learn more about how millennials can help your business, check out the infographic below created by Pepperdine University’s Online Master of Business Administration Program.