The Millennials: How Business Can Benefit to the Emerging Workforce
Some people think that there have been several IT-led upheavals in the world since World War Two, It is undoubtedly true that the convergence of personal computing, including smart devices, digital communications and the Internet has brought tremendous sea-changes in society.
The biggest changes have occurred in the first part of the new millennium, led by increasing digital availability and literacy. They are based around connectivity and affect everyone from cradle to grave from education to business to the way people interact socially.
Things move a lot faster nowadays. The age of instant gratification is here. Products change rapidly, and there is seemingly a desire to always be in contact. A new condition, Fear of Missing Out (FOMO) happens when someone has no connectivity to Social Media.
Most businesses must now embrace the new realities of the digital world and using Millenials can help them make the transition to a new environment.
How can business best use the skills of millennials to their benefit?
There are several key ways:
Millennials can help businesses understand the new markets
Traditional methods of analysing market trends, advertising goods and services and dealing with potential and current customers are no longer wholly viable. While the original market still exists, it is being overtaken in importance by the digital marketplace.
New marketing theories particular to the digital world arise daily and customer expectations are continually evolving.
Businesses need to use Millenials, who after all are embedded in this market to identify how best they need to modify their business strategies to meet the new environment.
This is likely to need generalist Millenials who can identify trends and specialist Millenials who can translate these observations into costed plans for incorporation into the corporate strategy.
This will be an ongoing process.
Millennials can help with developing products appropriate to the new market
If we thought planned obsolescence reduced product lifespan, then today’s market means many products are outdated before they hit the shops. A new media sensation, often also of limited duration can mean a planned product either hits the mark for a limited time or misses its market completely.
Either way, new and updated products are continuously needed.
Millennials can help with product design and placement.
Millennials can help adjust business policies and procedures for the new market
As well as helping the business respond to external events and pressures, Millenials can also assist with helping a business adjust internally.
All businesses have policies and procedures that have probably evolved over the lifetime of the business and are unlikely to have changed in any meaningful way in that time.
Many studies have shown that in general they are not aligned with the requirements of the new digital age, are not reactive enough and too slow to cope. In many cases, they can be a positive hindrance (if that’s not a contradiction in terms).
CNN became the leading news agency of its time by the owner, Ted Turner, scrapping the rule that required the approval of expenditure, saying that if that was what you needed to do to get to the news first, just do it, it would be approved.
Millennials can help review existing policies and procedures to bring them to a form more appropriate to current times.
Millennials can help enhance business reputation
If we look at the way people interact with the business nowadays, it is becoming increasingly on a digital basis. They search for potential suppliers of goods and services using internet search engines and blogs, interrogate others about suppliers and products on social media and make their purchases online. The availability of free or very cheap WiFi connectivity in public spaces has accelerated this trend.
For existing customers, they look online for support, both self-help and from chatbots and human assistants. They look for service improvements through VoIP system features like hunting and calling groups, voicemail and ubiquitous personal access.
Any business that does not have an Internet presence and does not obviously use digital techniques internally will be seen as a dinosaur and preference given to others.
In addition to customers, this perception also applies to staff. Millennials are more likely to work for a digitally aware organisation that will enhance their personal and job skills. A business needs to use Millenials to attract other Millenials that will ensure staff continuity into the future.
To ensure current business viability and to position a business for the future, using the skills and experience of Millenials is vital.