Human Resources Blog - Spark Hire

3 Ways Millennials Are Improving the Workplace

Millennials in the workplace get a pretty bad rap. Their coworkers complain that they’re entitled. Managers say they’re lazy. And news headlines report that unemployment rates for Gen Y are higher than any other age group.

Granted, some of these things may be true about millennials; but by demanding a little more, they are actually changing the workplace for the better. So before you count their age against them, ask yourself what these new hires might be able to contribute.

#3.  Clear career paths.

If you ask a millennial what their five-year plan is, they almost always have an answer. They may act entitled, but that’s in large part because they’re driven. Millennials in the workplace want to know the next step, and what they need to do to get there.

Millennials aren’t necessarily curious about their career paths because of promotions and salary increases. For them, it’s about the experience. Questions that go through a millennial’s mind as they’re considering a job offer might be: How does this fit into my plan for my career as a whole? Will it benefit me or hold me back?

Essentially, they want something out of this job, and it’s not just a paycheck. It’s a stepping stone to something better. And you can be the type of company that either offers that next step or the tools to get there.

#2.  Investment in professional growth.

Which brings us to the next point. Millennials in the workplace require training and instruction from human resources, coworkers and managers. Though they’ve been equipped with an education, they need some guidance on how to do the actual job. When that instruction is lacking, so are the new hires.

Training millennials in the workplace lets them know that the company is invested in them as employees. Not to mention, it equips them with the know-how to transition seamlessly into the organization. And more often than not, training is the key to new hire retention, according to a recent WorkTrends™ study.

#1.  Work/life balance.

Finally, millennials appreciate a work/life balance. Sure, that can come off as entitled and lazy to some people, but more and more companies across the United States are investing in work/life balance opportunities. In doing so, they’re creating organizations that don’t just value work; they value their employees.

Millennials in the workplace are asking for benefits that include discounted gym memberships, flexible working hours and opportunities to engage in philanthropic opportunities during working hours. These requests are changing companies across the country from the inside out. Employees are happy, more engaged and therefore more productive and successful.

Are there complaints to be made against millennials? Yes. But if you asked them about their older coworkers, you’d probably find that they had some opinions of their own. Regardless, don’t shrug off millennials and their so-called “demands.” Listening to them and implementing their suggestions can attract some top-notch talent, and more importantly, keep it at your company.

Do you think millennials are changing the workplace for the better? Spark a conversation below.

IMAGE: Courtesy of Flickr by itupictures

Kathryn Randolph

Kathryn is a freelance writer currently living in Chicago, Illinois. She holds a B.A. in English Writing from DePauw University and has five years experience writing for major job search and higher education websites. When she's not writing for the web, Kathryn is hanging out with her new baby girl, traveling, cooking, reading and running. She believes that the perfect job is out there for everyone and hopes to help Spark Hire job seekers discover their career passion and pursue it.