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How millennials are shaping the future of work

Sarah K. White | Aug. 5, 2016
Millennials are a driving force in the future of the workplace, pushing companies to modernise in order to keep up with the competition.

Technology is moving the workplace along at lightning speed and not all businesses are ready to catch up. But that modernization is key to the future of work, according to a recent study commissioned by Dell and Intel.

Penn Schoen Berland (PSB) conducted 3,801 online interviews earlier this year, speaking with individuals working in nine different markets, including education, government, financial services, healthcare, manufacturing, media, and entertainment and retail. They focused on the future of work and what these workers expect from their employers moving forward. "Not only is technology impacting the future office, it's redefining the office and greatly influencing the way we all currently work," says Kelli Hodges, global manager, Mobility at Dell.

The study found that tech lies at the heart of the "future of work," but also discovered that there are some key differences -- and similarities -- between what millennials and those over 35 want from their employers.

All your employees want the latest tech

If your company is running on outdated technology -- it might be time to consider an upgrade. According to the research, workers are "generally happy in their jobs," but are frustrated dealing with analog equipment in the workplace -- everything from desktop computers to landlines. Workers of all ages are accustomed to using smartphones, tablets, wearables and apps to make their personal lives easier -- and they want the same from the technology provided at work.

David Politis, CEO and founder of BetterCloud says that the latest technology is important in hiring millennial workers (millennials are the largest living generation, which makes them one of the keys to a successful organization). Businesses need to keep up with the latest technology, he says, not just to be able to retain this new generation of workers, but to stay competitive.

"The next generation of workers wants a high-tech workplace, so the companies seeking the best employees need to offer the best technology. Millennials have seen the impact of technology their whole lives and moving into a work environment without technological benefits feels like a step back from how they are used to working and communicating at school and in their personal lives," he says.

The study also reveals a not-too-far-off future where the global workforce becomes more mobile, productive and capable as a result of technology. Improved technology, once businesses finally adopt it, will help increase productivity, making it easier for workers to do their jobs. The findings also reveal a future where employees will become more capable, meaning they will actually know how to use new technology -- such as AI. In fact, 62 percent of respondents said they felt their job could be made easier with the help of artificial intelligence.


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