Training In The Office: What Do Millennials Want?

Millennials are those who are roughly between the ages of around 20-35—and they’re already swarming the workforce. More than one-in-three American workers today are Millennials, and in 2015 they surpassed Generation X to become the largest share of the American workforce, according to new Pew Research Center analysis of U.S. Census Bureau data. In order to retain this new generation long term for your workforce, your company should learn about preferences for training, communication and even employment best practices. By staying up-to-date, you can begin to learn what Millennials want when it comes to training in the office.

Tell Them What They Need to Know
The training Millennials are likely to want to consume has to be brief and to-the-point. In this day and age they constantly use technology that’s simple, intuitive, and flawlessly designed, so their training should be the same way. If the training content doesn’t appear to mirror what Millennials would naturally consume on a regular basis, they will be less likely to engage and more likely to become disinterested.

Because Millennials grew up in a time where technology is right at their fingertips at any given time, they think and act differently than older generations. They approach problems differently, so they require an up-to-date learning approach.

Microlearning provides training differently by use of short-term learning activities delivered in a convenient and accessible way. Content is distributed in short but impactful bursts that are typically 5-15 minutes in length. This method of training makes information easier to absorb, retain and recall for later use. It matches human brain processing capabilities which makes it a perfect fit for our fast-moving and hyperconnected lives.

Let Them Be Innovative in How They Execute Work
The 21st-century employee appreciates freedom and independence. They are able to learn and work from almost anywhere they choose, bringing their own phone and computer with them and finding new ways to execute work and plan out their day. Consider training using digitally native and mobile accessible programs in order to be most effective for this generation.

Provide Useful and Easily Accessible Tips

Millennials will turn to their phone to find answers to any question they have. This way of learning is much different than it has been in the past, as the information is being accessed instantaneously. Sending your Millennial employees intelligent learning materials via articles, videos, or interactive infographics, where they can quickly and easily view the content, is useful and effective. This can be done via email, texting or an app.

Provide a Collaborative Work Environment

On the job training is almost essential for any new hire, and the majority of that training happens via interactions with coworkers and managers. Creating communities where Millennials can learn and bounce ideas off of others can contribute to an impactful and empowering experience.

When microlearning is paired with a communal work environment, it aids in building healthy relationships, employee retention and sharing.

Commit to Continuous Learning
The accelerated change happening in business means that everyone needs to commit to learning new things in order to remain relevant. This also means that training has to be progressive enough to keep up with the specific challenges Millennials face at work. If content isn’t relevant and relatable, your company could suffer due to a lack of ease when Millennials try to recall information.

Creating a training program that addresses a relevant need and provides a relatable and effective solution are key for engagement. And remember, never stop learning and improving.

Merge Digital Training With Real-Life Activities

For the digitally dependent Millennial generation, it’s important that their training programs merge digital with real-world activities. Employee training that utilizes interactive video and simulations are becoming more popular in the workplace; not only is it fun to watch and participate in, but you’re also aiding in memory and information retention. By prompting, encouraging and rewarding Millennial learners for real-world interaction and application, you are binding their learning in an effective way.

In order to promote development, engagement, transformation and retention, use progressive approaches that match your progressive employees.