Four ways to engage and retain millennials in the workplace

Millennials make up nearly a third of the labor market today and are estimated to reach 75 percent of the global workforce

team members having a meeting

Millennials make up nearly a third of the labor market today and are estimated to reach 75 percent of the global workforce by 2025. Gallup reports millennials also are the generation most likely to switch jobs, costing the economy and businesses more than $30 billion annually. As the number of millennial employees in your company grows, it’s becoming more and more important to create a workplace that meets their preferences.

So how can employers appeal to millennials in hopes of increasing retention? It’s simple – keep them engaged and make them feel valued. Here are four tips for keeping millennials engaged and increasing retention.

Consider millennial feedback when defining company culture.

Millennials want a career in a workplace that makes them feel fulfilled, not just a paycheck. According to a study by Fidelity, millennials are willing to take an average pay cut of $7,600 in exchange for working for a company that offers meaningful work and an overall better company culture.

What defines “better” company culture and meaningful work to millennials? Ask them. Spend resources on research to learn what matters to millennials: What they look for in a company when job searching and what defines a great company culture. Also, be sure to involve your current millennial employees in leadership and decision making. Let them have an influence in your company’s culture as it continues to grow and evolve.

Offer career development and encourage community involvement.

Gallop reports 87 percent of millennials say job development is important in a job. Offer opportunities that will help your millennial employees learn and grow personally and professionally. Set aside a budget for employees to participate in professional organizations, attend conferences and take online courses. Help them build their networks by providing recommendations of local opportunities in which they can participate, like monthly industry luncheons or non-profit boards. You can help them stay focused by working with them to set quarterly and annual goals for developing new skills and technology.

Connect and engage millennials with veteran employees.

While the millennial generation is on its way to representing the majority of the work force, Gen Xers and Baby Boomers are still the most tenured. Consider adopting a mentorship program for new millennial hires. Mentorship programs are becoming more standard in the workplace with more than 71 percent of Fortune 500 companies offering them. Mentors can play a major role in keeping employee turnover rates low and serve as an engaging resource to millennial employees.

Schedule regular face-to-face meetings with millennial employees.

Millennials want consistent feedback and recognition for their work, but employee engagement among older bosses and younger employees is often lacking. Try meeting with millennial employees more often than just during an annual review. Schedule quarterly or even monthly meetings to catch up, acknowledge their work and both collect and provide constructive feedback.

As millennials continue to dominate the global workforce, make every effort to engage them and prepare them for a future in your company!