Millennials want to work for organizations that foster creativity and innovation, yet most aren’t expecting to find those opportunities at government agencies.
That’s according to Deloitte’s third annual survey of nearly 7,800 Millennials (those born 1983 or later) from 28 countries about business, government and innovation. More than three-quarters (78 percent) of Millennials said they were influenced by how innovative a company was when deciding if they wanted to work there, yet just 22 percent believe the most innovative solutions are most likely to come from government. More Millennials favored business (44 percent) and academia (23 percent) as providing the most innovative solutions.
That could be problematic for federal agencies faced with looming Baby Boomer retirements over the coming years. Deloitte’s report projected that Millennials will make up roughly 75 percent of the global workforce by 2025, and the majority will want to work for organizations that foster innovative thinking, develop their skills and make positive contribution to society.
The good news for federal agencies competing with the private sector for key Millennial talent is that businesses also are falling short when it comes to providing these opportunities to Millennials, with most saying their current employer does not encourage them to think creatively. Many cited the biggest barriers to innovation as management attitudes (63 percent), operational structures and procedures (61 percent) and employee skills, attitudes and diversity (39 percent).
In addition, most Millennials agree that the government is not doing enough to address society’s biggest issues, despite it having the greatest potential to do so. Nearly half felt government is having a negative impact in areas like unemployment (47 percent), resource scarcity (43 percent) and income inequality (56 percent).
Organizations overall are not doing enough to nurture emerging leaders, as cited by 75 percent of respondents. One in four Millennials also want the chance to prove their leadership skills to their organization, Deloitte found.
And despite wanting the ability to be creative, innovative and serve the public good in their jobs, many Millennials said they would work independently by digital means if these opportunities were not provided. Roughly 70 percent see themselves working independently at some point, rather than being employed within a traditional organizational structure.
“Millennials want to leave their mark on the world by working for organizations that benefit society, encourage innovation and provide them the opportunity to expand their skills,” the report states. “More than previous generations, they are ready to work independently if their needs are not being met by a traditional organization.”
Is your agency prepared not only to recruit Millennials but also keep them interested and engaged? Moreover, what does the study reveal about the future leadership of your agency?