Facilities Managers are constantly faced with a barrage of difficult and tedious tasks to complete or tackle. They have a running list of numerous jobs and are often answering or discerning information to people at all levels in an organization, from the C-suite all the way down to the bottom tier workers. One of the most challenging details of the FM’s job is to engage and be relevant to their workforce. FMs are learning that previous methods of enticing and rewarding their workforce is different, when considering this new generation of talent. So, what is it, exactly, that the youngest generation wants and is looking for in an organization? Let’s start with some of their core values and then address their wants and desires.
1. Treat Me Right
All employees want to be treated with dignity and respect, but the Millennial worker looks for more of a fair treatment for themselves, as well as all the other employees. This kind of whole group approach may have been cultured through their formative schooling years and has remained a key to their culture.
2. Grouping Up
Being part of the team is also a critical aspect to happiness in the workplace. Millennials crave teamwork and being able to address work concerns as a collaborative effort. The mindset of conquering problems with a comprehensive approach, involving multiple opinions and agreement for the methods used, is of great importance for the younger generations entering our workforce.
3. Recognize My Efforts
Although group effort is of great importance, the Millennial worker also wants to receive specific praise and recognition for their efforts. This doesn’t always translate to financial compensation, though, as doing the right thing shouldn’t be about getting more money, but relates back to the ideal of fair treatment. Millennials are driven by what is right, not what they can get right now.
4. Secure My Financial Future
As mentioned above, Millennials want to be recognized for their hard work. And, as stated, this doesn’t mean immediate or short-term compensation. This doesn’t mean financial security and stability isn’t important, though. Instead, the focus of this workforce is more on the long term of their financial well-being. It is of less importance to see their current bank account swell as it is to know they will be taken care of in their later years. This pragmatic shift from the “greed is good” mindset of the 80s is refreshing and usually causes the workforce to be more focused on the task at hand, as opposed to completion and compensation.
“Over half believe they will earn enough in the future and end up where they want to be financially, and almost three quarters of them believe they will be able to save enough to have the lifestyle they hope for.”
5. Use of Technology
Generation Next is a tech savvy bunch. They have always known some form of technology and often assume it should be available for all aspects of their career and social lives. By showing that technology is vital to your organization, you are singing their tune. Furthermore, continued investment into technological hardware, software and related processes shows your commitment to forward thinking and Millennial desires.
6. Improve the Process
Because so many Millennials are integrated into technological processes, they see most problems or constraints as problems caused by processes which need to be improved upon. It’s not so much that they want easy tasks, but rather they want to take complex problems and find more simple, yet elegant, solutions. The necessity of making work processes easy, yet effective, falls right in line with the other core values of teamwork and collaboration. This is, fortunately, a great for FMs, as so many are looking for strong, self-reliant teams.
7. Flexibility in the Workplace
Much like improving processes, Millennials are looking to make work flow as smooth as possible. This means flexibility in the workplace is key. These workers are willing to share ideas, work alone or in groups, make changes and find the best possible solutions. Flexibility, therefore, is central to their quest. They see this kind of freedom as necessary to creativity and also as a vote of confidence for their decision-making processes.
“…forward-thinking organizations are working closely with employees to determine when and how work will be done to maximize on productivity.”
8. On the Move
Often, flexibility and technology go hand in hand, which is a great fit for this workforce. One of the most flexible options is that of a mobile workforce, which can access critical information, stay in contact with the team and report progress, all form any location and at any time. Work options, such as an IWMS with mobile device links, fits the needs of the Millennials in more than one way and is a great benefit for all members of your team, no matter their age or social grouping.
9. Social Media As A Tool
While some of us see social media as a nice distraction, from time to time, many Millennials have come to regularly employ its services and even rely on this connected community as a means to almost any end. Looking for a better process or a clearer answer? Turn to the online community and outsource your growing knowledge base. Continuing in the trend of community collaboration, social media for a workforce can add another dimension to problem solving in the 21st century.
10. Philanthropic Positioning
As mentioned earlier, Millennials are concerned about what is right and fair. Therefore, they hold their company or organization to similar standards. These workers are looking for a company which mirrors their concerns and is willing to put their money where their mouths are. Philanthropic outreach from a company can be highly attractive to current or potential Gen Y workers. Seeing that a company has more than the bottom line in their line of sight will strengthen employee/employer bonds and helps workers to feel they are helping out where they can.
11. Like-minded Millennials
Even if many of these points are in action in your organization, it can be extremely helpful to hear about the benefits of working for your organization from a similar voice; a voice which speaks their language. Millennials attracting Millennials may be the key to ultimately attracting the best talent as sometimes it’s not just the message, but how it is conveyed, which makes the most difference. Find a personable employee to represent your company for the group you are seeking to attract.
Millennials represent the future of the business world and, although they are not all alike, there does seem to be a large amount of cohesive similarities in their approach to the world. This group is often highly skilled and ready to work together to solve problems. They require some special care, but much of the wants and needs they possess tend to be benefits for the entire organization. Tap into this unique group for the future of your organization.