Millennial Work Force Offers Challenges to Employers

Millenials are offering challenges to business executives, a study by German software firm SAP SE and British consulting agency Oxford Economics Ltd. (OEL) revealed.

“Millennies” are now forming the work force of today and, like other generations, have their own requirements, SAP SE Chief Human Resources Officer Stefan Ries said in a news briefing.

Citing the OEL survey, Ries said millennial workers impact the workforce strategy of any company today (51 percent of executives polled). The other two trends that do so are: globalization of labor supply and difficulty in recruiting employees with base-level skills.

However, fewer than a third of the total 2,700 executives polled by the OEL said “they are giving special attention to millennials’ particular wants and needs.”

This is primarily because executives do not understand how they think, the study said.

“Much has been written about how millennials are different in their use of technology and their attitudes toward work than past generations of workers; however, the Workforce 2020 study shows that they are surprisingly similar to their non-millennial coworkers when it comes to workplace priorities,” according to a statement provided by SAP SE.

The study revealed compensation as on the top of their priorities.

“Millennials and nonmillennials alike cite compensation as the most important benefit.”

The study discovered that 41 percent of millennials and 38 percent of nonmillennials said higher compensation would increase their loyalty and engagement with the company.

However, “contrary to popular thinking, millennials are no more likely than nonmillennials to leave their jobs in the next six months.”

Likewise, the study revealed that millennials and nonmillennials have similar priorities in areas such as meeting career and income goals and meeting goals for advancement. The two groups have similar views on the importance of corporate values and achieving work/life balance.

“Millennials are a major challenge for companies. As the single largest and most tech-savvy workgroup, they also represent a significant opportunity,” a statement quoted SAP SE executive Mike Ettling as saying.

“Companies that can excite millennials about work, train them to fill in gaps on experience and adapt to their style of working can build a work force that can successfully execute on the objectives of today and adapt to drive advantage for the business of tomorrow,” Ettling added.

Few companies, however, are properly supporting their workers, including millennials, the study revealed.

Less than half of employees surveyed said their company provides ample training on the technology they need. Less than a third of those polled said their company makes the latest technology available to them.

However, Ries, a member of the Global Managing Board of SAP SE with global responsibility for HR, said that businesses “need to address specific needs for every generation.”

(Reported by Dennis Estopace for Business Mirror.)

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