Most organizations will continue to need employees from all generations to find and maintain a balance within the workplace. However, evidence is arising that the millennial generation may be best positioned to help an organization remain agile, innovative and moving forward.
Although members of every generation can have great ideas it is often the younger generation who brings to the table fresh ideas as they lead the charge to understand new emerging trends and technology. In todays rapidly evolving technology world the cache of Millennials continues to grow with each passing technology and social trend.
Millennials are poised to soon become the largest generation in the workplace and a large number of Millennials already hold management level positions. The importance of Millennials does not negate the importance of other generations. It is often older generations who have the experience and knowledge to help assess and integrate new ideas, making them tangible and executable. Each generation brings strengths and perspective but as the generation poised to succeed in the new business economy the Millennials are an important part of every workplace.
A recent survey of over 1,000 US Millennials, conducted by Elance-oDesk, (21-32 year olds with a post-secondary university degree) and 200 hiring managers (over the age of 33 with responsibilities for recruitment and HR) revealed some interesting data.
Hiring Managers See Millennials Having Skills Other Generations Do not
Millennials are often seen as technology savvy and having vital technical skills. In the survey 82% of hiring managers reported that they believe Millennials are more technologically adept and 68% said they felt Millennials had skills prior generations simply do not.
Most Millennials see the job landscape differently than the generations before them; 58% expect to stay in any given job for less than 3 years compared to 5 and 7 years for Gen X and Boomers. 53% of hiring managers reported that they are having difficulty finding and retaining millennial employees. Interestingly, 41% of hiring managers indicated they are favoring hire a new type of worker, the freelancer. The advantages of hiring freelancers included the just-in-time hiring allowing the ability to scale employees up and down and the ability to hire for very specific skills when the needed them. According to the survey 79% of Millennials were interested in the freelance career option saying that they ‘would consider quitting a full time job to work for themselves’.
Millennials Have The Hard Skills Edge
Hiring in the job market continues to remain tepid in many areas. Frequently many hiring managers have cited a need for soft skills in the workplace and often suggest that Millennials lack many of the soft skills they want. Yet, there is a very new trend emerging. In the survey 55% of hiring managers reported that they are prioritizing hiring for hard skills today and 45% said they expect even more skill-focused hiring over the next 10 years. This represented a turn in the research compared to the past few years when soft skills were the mantra. There is a perceived need for hard skills in the market place and now hiring managers are turning to Millennials to meet this need.
Although hiring managers felt that Millennials were narcissistic they also found them more open to change, creative and entrepreneurial, all traits that lends themselves to the adaptability and innovation required to survive and thrive in an ever evolving competitive business landscape.
Hiring Millennials can offer an important business edge. It is important to learn more about the perks and benefits you need to offer to attract and retain this highly useful and adaptive generation.