While older generations think of millennials as spoiled and entitled, the truth is that they are anything but. This is particularly true when it comes to the workplace. Although millennials do not follow the prescribed rules in any facet of life, they are certainly shakings things up when it comes to work. More than any other generation before them, millennials have seen the real effects of technology on workplace productivity. This means that they have a skillset that other workers of older generations do not. As such, millennial workers are a lot more useful than just being asked to open a PDF or fix an internet browser. With that in mind, here are the advantages that millennials bring to the workplace and how workplaces can do more to integrate these advantages.
Efficiency with Technology
If there’s one thing millennials love, it’s technology. Being the most studied generation in history, it is estimated that between 92%-93% of millennials own smartphones, and also are the leaders in adopting technology in other ways. Because of this, millennials are much more likely than their older colleagues to bring technology to the workplace, and use it for their own advantage. As such, millennial worker should be encouraged to help workplaces adopt technology-friendly policies, and help to integrate technology more fully into the workflow of various projects. For example, a project management tool might be a better fit for a project’s workflow than doing everything in Excel sheets. If that might be the case, encourage a millennial to take charge here; there’s a reason that millennials were able to change project management altogether through the use of technology.
Need for Flexibility
If there’s one thing that millennials in the workforce can agree on, it’s that they want a more flexible schedule. That’s not to say that millennials aren’t willing to work hard. They’re happy to put in the hours and even answer emails and text messages from their bosses and coworkers after business hours. But as a result of millennials’ efforts to value their time and achieve a better work-life balance, LinkedIn has reported that 70% of hiring managers offer some kind of work from home opportunities. This is great boon to workers of all generations, and integrates well with millennial’s efficient use of technology. Many millennials are able to complete their work-related tasks in a timelier manner, and as a result want to take advantage of the flexibility that that should provide.
Overall, millennials have changed the workplace for the better, and have forced companies to move forward and treat their employees with more autonomy and respect. Because millennials do not expect to work at the same company for the majority of their career, businesses need to do more to appeal to millennials and make good use of their skills. If they do not, companies will find that millennials who have highly sought-after talents will strive to work elsewhere. After all, millennials aren’t looking for foosball tables and other pointless amenities. They are looking to take charge and use the knowledge that they have to innovate and change workplace culture as we know it, both for the benefit of themselves and the companies that they work for.