Four Things Young Employees Really Want - Fr James Grant Foundation

The Four Things Young Employees Really Want

In a time of high youth unemployment and global uncertainty young employees are prepared to offer greater loyalty to their employers while seeking out businesses with a community commitment, according to the Millennial Survey 2017.

The annual global study by financial consultancy firm Deloitte notes this generation of employees feels their financial prospects and future wellbeing are less certain than generations of the past, and they’re prepared to step up and put in the hard yards as a result.

Here are four things the study notes young employees seek out and are prepared to offer in a new age of automation and international upheaval.


Millennials have had a bad wrap in recent years, presented in the media as feeling entitled, residing with their parents too long and switching jobs on a whim. But that’s not necessarily the case, according to Deloitte.

The study notes many feel pessimistic about their future, believing it offers less financial security than it did for their parents. As a result, they’re more loyal to their employers than in the past, seeking out job stability in a period of uncertainty.

The data finds the length of time millennials are looking to commit to a company has lengthened, with 31 percent anticipating they will stay beyond five years, this is a four per cent rise on the previous year.

Conversely, only 38 percent indicated they would leave within two years, (down six percent on the year prior) and only seven percent noted they would “leave soon” a reduction of 10 per cent on 2016.

Full-time / permanent employment

Full-time employment on a permanent basis is also more appealing now than a year ago, Deloitte says, with a drop in young employees preferring freelance or consulting work.

Seventy percent of millennials in developed countries would prefer full-time/permanent employment.

“The reasons most often given for preferring a permanent role are that it offers ‘job security’ and ‘a fixed income’.”

Positive change

But this generation isn’t seeking to just work for ‘anyone’ they’re expecting more social commitment from big business, with the view corporates can be agents for real and positive social change.

“Since 2013, when we first asked millennials about the impact business has on wider society, they have given overwhelmingly positive responses. This continues to be the case, with 76 per cent now regarding business as a force for positive impact,” the study says.

In particular, they believe business can contribute to education, skills, and training; economic stability; cybersecurity; health care and disease prevention; unemployment; climate change; and unemployment, but are not yet realising their full potential.

The report continues that when business offers young people the opportunity to engage with social causes, they feel empowered and more loyal to their organisation.

“Business involvement in social causes goes beyond the tangible impact and reputational benefit that might result…employees who feel their jobs have meaning, or that they are able to make a difference, exhibit greater levels of loyalty.”


While millennials seek stability and social commitment from their employer, they are looking for flexibility in their workplace – whether through the ability to work remotely or set their own hours,

Deloitte notes technology has driven this trend, with employers increasingly comfortable with offering this level of trust.

“Such arrangements are not simply nice to have but are strongly linked to improved performance and employee retention,” the survey notes.

“For example, those in organizations that offer a high degree of flexibility in working arrangements seem to reward their employers with higher levels of loyalty. In highly flexible working environments, the difference between those who see themselves leaving within two years (35 percent) is just two points above those anticipating to stay beyond over years (33 percent)— among those in the least- flexible organizations, there is an 18 point gap (45 percent versus 27 percent). The difference is significant.”

The roundup

For a business seeking to tap into the young talent pool, the rewards are very real. It’s clear if offered an opportunity and afforded trust, millennials are prepared to stay the course and commit to their employer.

With this generation seeking employer attributes like social commitment, stability, and flexibility, their expectations benefit employers, themselves and society as a whole.

Mission Engage

The Father James Grant Foundation’s Mission Engage believes government, business, and individuals all have a role to play in providing positive prospects for Australia’s youth, especially when it comes to employment.

Our programs arm young people with the skills and experience they require to obtain meaningful employment, but we do not do it alone.

We actively work with job seekers and business to provide training, real world workplace exposure, confidence and the necessary skills to address youth unemployment.

To become involved or learn more about our successful initiative and ethos, see here.

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