Warc Blog

Millennials urge firms to innovate

24 January 2014
DAVOS: Young people around the world are generally positive about digital technology, but many believe that companies should do more to tackle societal problems, a new study has shown.

These and other findings are disclosed in the third annual Millennial Survey from Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Ltd (DTTL), the international consultancy, which questioned more than 7,800 degree-educated millennials across 28 countries.

The report found that seven in ten millennials would prefer to work independently through digital means in the future. But a similar proportion, while believing business has a positive impact on society, think it can do much more to address society's challenges.

The majority also believe employers could do more to improve innovative thinking and a full 78% say a company's reputation for innovation influences whether they would want to work there.

It found that Generation Y – expected to comprise 75% of the global workforce by 2025 – wants to work for organisations that foster innovative thinking, develop their skills and make a positive contribution to society.

Almost three-quarters (74%) believe businesses have a positive impact on society, but want companies to do more to address pressing issues, such as resource scarcity (68%), climate change (65%) and income inequality (64%).

Millennials also want governments to do more and almost half believe governments are having a negative impact on areas identified as among the top challenges, such as unemployment (47%) and resource scarcity (43%).

In addition to addressing their concerns about innovation, organisations should also do more to develop Gen-Y's future leadership skills, the survey revealed.

A full 75% believe their organisations could do more to nurture leadership skills while 63% believe management attitude is the biggest barrier to innovation.

"To attract and retain talent, business needs to show millennials it is innovative and in tune with their world view," said Barry Salzberg, DTTL's CEO.

"By working together and combining their different skills, business, governments and non-governmental organisations have an opportunity to reignite the millennial generation and make real progress in solving society's problems," he added.

Elsewhere, the survey established that 63% of millennials donate to charities, 43% are willing to volunteer and 52% have signed petitions in the past.

Data sourced from PR Newswire, Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu; additional content by Warc staff

 
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