What is a millennial looking for in their work environment?

December 2021
Work environment VodafoneZiggo
Work environment Ritchie Bros.
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The entry of a new generation into the professional labor market has brought about major changes in recent years in the way of working and the requirements we set for a modern working environment. Traditional working environments are slowly disappearing and are being taken over by millennials who set completely different demands on a working environment. Millennials have the characteristic that they have a greater desire to learn, develop themselves professionally and to be able to communicate freely with each other regardless of position or rank within an organization.
The entry of a new generation into the professional labor market has brought about major changes in recent years in the way of working and the requirements we set for a modern working environment. Traditional working environments are slowly disappearing and are being taken over by millennials who set completely different demands on a working environment. Millennials have the characteristic that they have a greater desire to learn, develop themselves professionally and to be able to communicate freely with each other regardless of position or rank within an organization.

A survey conducted by Mindspace in conjunction with Onepoll among 2,000 office workers in the UK reveals some interesting insights. For example, it appears that more than 30% of employees are not motivating in the existing work environment, 28% indicate that their workplace is ‘outdated and ‘boring’.

New ways of working therefore also mean a new perspective on the design of a work environment. It should therefore come as no surprise that ‘Generation Y’ is more looking for smart and innovative techniques in the places where they work. Because millennials switch jobs more often and more easily, organizations are expected to put more effort into attracting talent. Offering a dynamic and modern working environment can help with this.

On the other hand, it can be difficult for the older Generation X employees to accept or understand these new insights and ways of working. They are used to the traditional approach and breaking this approach can be discouraging and sometimes feel like a danger to their own position within the organization. It is therefore important to put Generation X and Generation Y together in order to merge them together as a team. In this way one can create a working environment where the positive aspects of existing processes are preserved, but where a natural evolution takes place to attract new talent.

 

What do millennials expect from a modern work environment?

 

–      21% of 18-24 year olds have turned down a potential employer because of poor office appearance or lack of amenities.

–      16% of 18-24 year olds have left a job because of a bad working environment.

–      34% of 18-24 year olds would work an extra hour for an office that meets their requirements.

 

But what are the features that a millennial has so high on his list of priorities? According to the results of Mindspace’s report:

More than 82% of the surveyed population works from the same office for five days a week and 80% of them also sit at the same desk every day. That’s why it’s important that organizations not only deliver the standard requirements, but also deliver benefits that attract millennials. Daylight, air conditioning and good lighting in the work environment are seen as popular factors among employees, according to Mindspace’s report. However, we have some other ideas about the needs of millenians in a work environment…

 

Spaces to collaborate

Almost half of respondents indicate that there is no, or almost no, collaboration within teams and departments. This is at odds with the fact that, according to research by Intelligence Group, millennials find it very important that there is good cooperation within an organization. The research showed that 88% of millennials would rather work in a collaborative environment than in a purely competitive environment. It is therefore high time that organizations look for a way of working where these two factors come together.

 

An open way of communicating

Spaces where people can work together stimulate creativity and efficiency, but are also responsible for removing clear boundaries. The office seems a lot less intimidating this way and communication is easier. According to a survey by Intelligence Group, 79% of millennials prefer a boss who takes on less of a managerial role and more of a coach or mentor. This shows a clear change in the dynamics of a working environment. Shared social spaces such as a bar, WorkCafe or lounge environment provide exactly the platforms needed to deal with this changing way of communicating.

 

Investing in local charities

About 64% of millennials say in the Intelligence Group survey that they want to make the world a better place. Investing in local charities is therefore a perfect way to fulfill this wish of a new group of employees. It is also fantastic to do a little more as an organization than just carrying out your normal activities.

 

A comfortable (integrated) work-life balance

88% of the survey participants indicated that they want a better and more integrated work-life balance. Organizations will have to consider the personal life of an employee to discover how they can attract talent. Gone are the days when a job was only between 9 and 5 and work and private life were strictly separated. Several companies are already working to implement this integration within their own organization. However, this requires support among employees. Examples of such an integration are, for example, a pet-friendly working environment, flexible working hours and a free sports subscription.

Creating an inspiring environment for your employees

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Offers choice and control

Give your employees the freedom to work wherever they want. By offering a wide range of spaces with different resources and atmospheres, they can perfectly adapt to the wishes and needs that they have at that moment.

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Make it authentic

Create places where a person can and dares to be themselves completely. Light, material, informal places and natural elements are powerful influences on the behavior and communication of the brand and the culture of an organization.

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Cherish your people

Also, don't forget about a person's physical and emotional needs. Good coffee and a range of healthy food indicate that you as an organization prioritize the well-being of an employee. WorkCafés and a bar give people the opportunity to meet each other in an informal way and get to know each other better. It's no secret that stronger relationships can lead to better ideas and increase synergy and creativity within a team.

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Give space to the best technology

Today it is very frustrating for an employee when technology fails them. It creates frustration and distraction because the work often depends to a large extent on the technology within a company. Therefore, make sure you have good quality equipment that makes it easy to share information and ideas with each other.

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