If you want to attract millennials, then you need to embrace flexible working…

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Although I have a slight issue with the term millennial, (I’m not really sure how such a diverse group of people with differing wants and needs can be grouped together under a single term) you can’t argue with the fact that endless pieces of research, including this latest piece by Totaljobs, all confirm the same thing…  Those classed as millennials (aged between 18 and 34) want a more flexible workplace.

The ability to work remotely/from home is such a sought-after benefit that 25% of workers would change jobs to have the option to work from home, this increases to 54% for millennial workers. It doesn’t stop there, when looking for a new role remote working is a key factor and is in the top 5 most important benefits, coming above those such as enhanced parental leave, travel allowances and L&D. 20% say that they would chose a job with remote working over one that didn’t offer it.

These facts just go to show that those organisations that are able to, need to start embracing flexibility if they want to attract and retain the most talented individuals.  Anyone that has read a few of our blogs will know there we are strong advocates of flexible working and have a totally remote workforce.  Over the past 2 years we’ve recruited 4 key roles and this flexible approach has allowed us to recruit from a wider selection of candidates.  We’re not limited to those within commuting distance of an office.

With technology improving daily, the barriers of working remotely, ie being unreachable, unable to access files or systems are now easily surmountable. So, it’s no surprise that nearly 40% of the UK workforce prefer to work from home, this figure rises to 46% for those aged 18-34 (millennials) but drops to 31% for those aged 55 and over.  Showing the popularity of remote working for millennial workers.  The greater level of flexibility, reduced commuting times and better integration of work and home life that remote working offers is most appreciated by women with 25% preferring to work from home compared to just 16% of men.

However, it does appear that those in charge aren’t as keen as workers on remote working. 12% do not offer remote working options due to difficulty in managing their workforce remotely, and of those that allow it, 15% admitted to using software to track how long employees have spent on certain tasks. This lack of trust and perception that working from home is just a way to skive for the day is one of the biggest barriers to flexible working.  Despite workers saying they’re more productive at home, 16% of those questioned still believe that their colleagues don’t work hard enough when working from home!

Obviously, it’s not possible for every profession to do their job from home. technology is a few years away from being able to offer remote haircuts, or have droids serving in restaurants or bars, but doctors can see patients via video conferencing and surgeons can now control mechanical hands from different countries. 2018 marks an important milestone – it is the first time that those born in this century will enter the workforce as adults.  How will the working world for those that have no memory of a life before the internet, email or mobile phones differ from that of their parents and grandparents?

‘If you want to attract millennials, then you need to embrace flexible working……’ was written by Verity Morrish, Marketing Manager, Chiumento Ltd. If you like what you’ve read why not follow us on LinkedIn and Twitter and read all our future careers advice and musings on the world of work.

 

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