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Millennial’s Expectations in the Workplace

Natalie Harris-Briggs  

Known all too well for being the generation who favour purchasing avocado on toast over their own house, ‘millennial’ is a broad term used to define anyone who was born between the early 1980s to the mid 1990s.

Metro claims millennials to be the generation that is completely comfortable with technology, that was most affected by the great recession, and that generally have liberal views by political and social standards.

Of course, these characteristics all affect what the millennial employee expects – and in many cases, needs – in the workplace. Some of the different expectations that millennials have, when compared to Generation X, are:

  • More technology in the workplace
  • Equal wages between sexes
  • More communication via social media and other platforms
  • Flexibility
  • Collaboration
  • Customisation
  • Zero casual racism, sexism or homophobia

We’re going to look at a few of these in some more detail, to find out what the millennial really needs in the workplace in 2020.

But first, where do millennials work? Forbes put together a list of the best companies for millennials. This includes:

  • Northrop Grumman – benefits include a great work life balance and compensation
  • Discover Financial Services – qualified employees receive a full bachelor’s degree
  • Delta – this company offers travel to all of the worldwide destinations that they service – completely free for employees!
  • Apple – they offer an in-house healthcare programme
  • Microsoft – they are keen to contribute to charity, matching employee’s donations of up to $15,000 per calendar year
  • Upwork – supporting the rise of freelance work, this platform is considered to be the future of work

So, we can see where millennials work, and what kind of businesses would draw them in – ones offering good work/ life balance, good healthcare and a company that favours charity. This reflects millennials ethos’ and needs: that they want to help charity, to be able to enjoy their life while working hard and to have access to great healthcare.

So what are the overall themes of these? Let’s have a glance!


Probably the biggest expectation that millennials have in the workplace is the rise of technology. They want to be using more and more technology, from smartphones to laptops to artificial intelligence. They are also the generation who knows the best about computers, the internet and other – more whacky – technological inventions like robot waiters and Camilla the rubber chicken, who lives 124,800 feet above California.

Forbes state that “millennials want technology that contributes to their personal growth” and that impacts the workplace in positive ways. Forbes also claims that professional development is an important part of their job. This leads to technology like creative ways to train using video and tools to do their jobs efficiently.

Forbes states that millennials do expect cutting-edge technology – but because of the rising role of technology in the workplace, they know that they can get their work done a lot more efficiently with this correct technology – so it’s beneficial to both them and the companies that they work for.

Technologies like interactive whiteboards or alternatives such as displays are great for millennials’ needs as they encourage use of technology, collaboration and remote work! We’ve got some great options for all sorts of displays that are perfect for any workplace.

Click here to learn more.

Social Media

Millennials are nowadays expecting to use social media in the workplace more and more. This can come under the category of using Facebook groups for employees, Twitter chats between industry experts or LinkedIn profiles.

So what is social media used for? It’s great for anything – it can be used to spread messages about donating to charities (something that millennials are very interested in), to update people on industry news, or to collaborate with people in the same industries.

Flexible working days

Due to business technology for millennials, they are now expected to be flexible about everything. Gone are the days where work ends at 5pm – younger people nowadays are expected to be constantly online. Even on holidays, people are expected to be able to answer emails and instant messages. This is great for customer services, but not so great for the work/ life balance.

Interestingly, even though millennials do favour a work/ life balance, they’re also generally happy to answer emails and instant messages on the go. Millennials and Gen Z’ers are the generations of multi-tasking; whether or not this is a good thing is subjective! Due to this constant necessity of being online, some people state that the work/ life balance may even be unattainable.

Collaboration in the Workplace

Millennials are enjoying the use of collaborative tools, such as Slack and Trello, as ways to increase productivity. They’re even called ‘the collaboration generation’. They wish for tools that help them work the way that they want, rather than matching themselves to suit the tools.

Examples of effective collaboration in the workplace include huddle rooms, software like mentioned above and interactive displays, which can communicate with people elsewhere in the office and even remote workers.

Flexible Location

Many millennials don’t want to work in the office at all; they would rather have a remote lifestyle. These opportunities are more desired by younger workers, as more and more are wishing to be able to travel and work. Some companies are finding that they have to offer remote work as otherwise, their employee base may decide to become self-employed or work elsewhere.

Business technology for millennials means that they are generally able to work from home, from co-working spaces or even cafes! Using time tracker apps like Upwork, payment technology like PayPal and calling programmes like Skype and Google Hangouts makes it very feasible to work on a flexible basis.

Equality and Diversity

It goes without saying that, in 2020, all workplaces should be equal and embrace diversity. Nobody should be discriminated for their gender, race, religion, sexuality or identity.

Millennials won’t stand for discrimination on any grounds; their liberal views mean that they know that everyone is equal and understand that workplace discrimination is wrong.

Females should be paid the same as males, and there are equal pay laws that advocate this.

However, there still are some ways industries manage to find loopholes to pay males more than women.

But millennials aren’t  being quiet about it – this is shown as the BBC protests for equal pay.

Younger generations won’t rest until there is complete equality between the sexes, and women and men getting the same rate is something that millennials expect in the workplace.

It’s also very important to stop making crude jokes that target a minority – no matter what the minority is. Casual racism needs to be completely stamped out and it’s just not appropriate in the modern workplace.

In this day and age, where mental health is something that’s such a talked-about topic, millennials will not stand for anyone or any group being out casted.

This is a fantastic way that millennials are bringing real change to both the workplace and the world.


Millennials have a lot of expectations in the modern workplace; not all of them unreasonable!

They want a lot more technology and a (seemingly growingly unattainable) work/ life balance, equality and a great deal more flexibility.

Millennials generally represent the change of the workplace in recent years, and as they go through the system and Gen Zers begin to find their way in the modern office, this will only evolve further.

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