Over the last decade, workplace flexibility has become an important topic, particularly among millennials, who make up the largest generation in today’s workforce. Millennials demand workplace flexibility in order to achieve a better work-life balance. The following are ways in which they are shaping workplace trends.
Unlike previous generations, millennials place less emphasis on the hours they spend working and more focus on the work performed. On the other hand, their older bosses often equate more face time with higher productivity.
Millennials gravitate toward remote work because they are tech savvy and value the flexibility that remote working offers. They realize that technology allows them to work from anywhere. Millennials are more likely to take a pay cut or give up a promotion in exchange for the ability to work remotely.
A survey by the Intelligence Group found that 64% of millennials say it’s a priority for them to make the world a better place. The future of the workplace will rely on the ability of companies to inspire millennial workers with innovation, compassion, and sustainability.
Flexible work doesn’t stop at remote working. Other alternative working arrangements that millennials enjoy include part-time schedules, flexible schedules, alternative schedules, and freelancing. Alternative schedules involve working outside of the typical 9 to 5 schedule. Flexible schedules can be either full-time or part-time, and employees can work at different times throughout the day.
Millennials prefer collaborative work cultures more so than competitive ones. Collaborative work environments foster teamwork. Planning and decision-making are done openly and cooperatively rather than behind closed doors. Collaborative work environments also value people with different backgrounds, ideas, and experiences.
Millennials don’t want to work for companies that are harming the planet. Millennials want to work for companies that are making a difference by helping to solve social and environmental issues. In order to recruit top talent, companies have to focus on making an impact.
Millennials feel valued when they have the opportunity to work alongside and learn from older, more experienced members of their team. Senior employees have a lot to teach their millennial counterparts, but younger employees may also have a lot to share with their mentors in areas like design, marketing, and customer experience.
New, innovative companies have done away with the traditional, hierarchical structure and are embracing organizational and management systems that spread decision-making responsibilities to various roles and teams. When the structure of a company is more fluid in nature, it empowers staff to take initiative and spearhead solutions.
Having entered the workforce in the wake of the recession, many millennials are risk averse. They are conditioned to expect economic instability, so they are often unwilling to put all of their eggs into one basket. That’s why millennials frequently explore different sources of flexible work.
Open office plans have overtaken cubicles as the typical workplace layout. They are back in vogue, despite the fact that they fell out of style for a while because older workers were frustrated with the noise and lack of privacy. Millennials prefer to share desk space in a central area so they can bond with their co-workers. Several large companies, like Cisco and Microsoft, have established “free address” workplaces that have no assigned seating.
In order to remain impactful and competitive, companies must embrace the changes that the millennial generation has brought forth and accommodate their preferences. Add-On Products’ productivity tools for Microsoft Outlook® and Exchange can help you build a more flexible, collaborative workforce. We offer team calendar software that facilitates collaboration among a distributed workforce, and meeting and resource booking software that allows you to build a flexible workplace. Contact us today to set up a free trial!