Millennials are forecast to make up 35% of the global workforce by 20201. This figure is predicted to increase to 75% by 20252.
Such a sea change is scheduled to shake up the way in which businesses function. As a result, smart organisations are modernising their processes and policies between now and 2020 to meet demand from this powerful demographic. Key areas being reviewed include company culture and values, recruitment, induction and onboarding, and learning and development.
Applying flexible methods of working – less “office-based” and more “office anywhere” – positively contributes to re-defining company culture. Technical and IT teams are providing remote server access to shared drives and implementing virtual workspaces such as Slack to aid collaboration. This set-up, or similar, is becoming standard for most small to medium organisations, with in-house bespoke systems meeting larger companies’ needs.
An agile approach to the outdated 9-5 means Millennials (and their older colleagues) are entrusted to work online, from the office, their home and/or the local coffee shop. They can work independently and at times asynchronously to their team and the wider company.
Millennials expect nothing less given they’ve known no different. Throughout their life they’ve proactively used e-communication with fellow students, friends, lecturing staff and family. From FaceTime to instant messaging apps and a variety of social media channels thrown into the mix, it is their “norm”.
Recruitment and retention
Now, 2020 and beyond, advertising and attracting suitable candidates to fill a vacant position demands time and an integrated marketing approach – a visible employer brand via social media, organic and paid online advertising via LinkedIn, as well as client and employee advocacy etc.
With this in mind, and as we’ve explored in a previous post, Millennials’ brand loyalty is minimal. Recruiting again 12-18 months after a start date is a hard cost to swallow3. With swift progression high on Millennials’ agenda, employers are sharpening their retention strategies to ensure their employees remain engaged. From induction and onboarding, to delivering company-wide L&D, forward-thinking organisations are offering a modern alternative to traditional workplace training and internal communication.
L&D and internal comms
Virtual classrooms are being implemented in organisations to offer staff a live and interactive digital environment for L&D delivery. The online space provides for:
- individual L&D (professional pathways, upskilling and improvement)
- essential courses (compliance, health and safety for example)
- and team-based training (introducing new systems, management training).
It also allows for on-demand access to workplace training – Millennials expect opportunity for self-directed learning, particularly to hone soft skills.
Platforms like GoToMeeting, Skype for Business or Zoom, and a structured learning program facilitated by an online trainer, bring all the benefits of face-to-face training online. They also allow companies to disseminate internal communication (monthly updates, announcements) company-wide and hold team meetings to aid engagement. In addition, virtual classrooms offer the option of interviewing across locations to aid flexible and cost-effective recruitment, with induction and onboarding delivered online thereafter.
Ideal for remote-workers and businesses with multiple offices, virtual classrooms empower flexible working, and deliver effective L&D. Second to this, they can heighten employee advocacy and contribute to a positive company culture.
Drop us a line for more information on how virtual classrooms can contribute to modernising your workplace processes, now, 2020 and beyond.