It’s no secret that the biggest challenge to growth is skills shortages, and with millennials making up the largest generational group in today’s workforce, understanding what makes them tick and their motivations for work is crucial.

Many businesses are already investing in emerging talent and developing Apprenticeship and graduate schemes that incorporate the specific training and development needs that the business is missing. But how much do we really know and understand about millennials, and more importantly do your succession plans meet the expectations of this audience?

What do we know about millennials? 

  • 58% of millennials define success as finding a good work/life balance
  • 62% say success is enjoying the work they do
  • They’re confident multi-taskers
  • Technology experts
  • Corporate social responsibility, sustainability and diversity are key when considering a role
  • Continued learning and training opportunities are highly valued

*Stats from 2019 Total Jobs Survey 

Millennials are sceptical of business’s motives

Millennials’ opinions about business have been diminishing (according to the recent Deloitte Global Millennial Survey 2019) , in part due to views that businesses focus solely on their own agendas rather than considering the consequences for society. 55% said business has a positive impact on society, down from 61% in 2018. In addition, millennials support companies that align with their values and younger generations are putting their money where their mouths are when it comes to supporting businesses that make a positive impact on society. Many say they will not hesitate to lessen or end a consumer relationship when they disagree with a company’s business practices, values or political leanings, so investing time into your Corporate Social Responsibility plan could be a great place to start.

Infographic of Deloitte Millennial Survey 2019

So how should we approach succession planning with millennials in mind? 

We need to re-think the traditional approach to succession planning and evolve our methods to provide the right growth opportunities and support to millennial employees. Success in one area doesn’t mean a worker will thrive in a leadership position. When we know that millennials are more likely than any other generation to leave a successful position to move onto a more satisfying lifestyle, it’s vital to understand exactly what motivates these employees.

Embracing honest conversations and listening to your employees will enable you to be open to change. The basic principles below provide a good starting point for creating a succession plan for millennials in your company:

  • Learn what matters the most to your employees
  • Provide frequent feedback and reward quality work 
  • Make your succession planning strategy transparent 

Some companies avoid the responsibilities of succession planning assuming potential leaders will naturally rise to the top. In this buyer’s market, skilled professionals are receiving multiple offers and our millennials are looking for more than just a competitive remuneration package, favouring company culture, development and flexibility. What’s more, this audience, and in fact most professionals are forming their opinions on a role from the very beginning of the application process, so if you want to hire the best talent you need to ensure you deliver a positive recruitment experience.

Employer branding and succession planning strategies are becoming more and more important for our clients and we have specific tools available to help businesses identify their unique skills gaps and map out their future talent pools.

Millennials have the opportunity to challenge old ways of doing things and can strengthen a company in many ways. Don’t leave the future of your business to chance, implement a strategy that will push the most qualified employees into positions that can drive success.

For support or advice on building a succession planning strategy in your business, or an informal chat about how to strengthen your employer branding, call us on 01604 758 857, or email 

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