Deloitte Millennial Survey 2017: A Lot Has Changed in a Year

By Holly Conti / Apr 05, 2017



Over the past several years I would often roll my eyes when I heard the term “millennial,” or I’d find ways to deny that I was one. But despite our dreamlike attitudes and constant need to be connected to social media, corporate enterprise has great stock in what happens to millennials. They are the largest growing section of the workforce and widely decide consumer trends. After reading this year’s annual millennial survey published by the global professional services firm, Deloitte, it’s clear that the times they are a changin’, as Bob Dylan would say.

I encourage you to read the full survey here, but below are some of the biggest takeaways from the survey. 

Meaningful work has always been high on the list of priorities for millennials, but this year they are putting even more trust in businesses to create positive social impact. As it turns out, millennials just might see the value in corporate enterprise after all.

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Millennials in the Workplace

Uncertainty Might Drive Decisions

It seems the optimism that millennials were once known for has been rattled by current events. According to the survey, only 34% of millennials in mature markets expect economic conditions to improve, and of the 30 countries surveyed, the U.S. was the only mature millennial market to say they think they will be better off than their parents were. Uncertain economies and anxiety about current affairs is making job security a priority for millennials. Nearly two-thirds report that they prefer full-time jobs over freelance positions. And although they are more willing than ever to trade the unaffiliated life for more security, there are two standards most won’t part with: flexibility in the workplace and purpose in the product.    

Flexibility Equals Loyalty

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  • In today’s world, businesses are starting to listen to the values of millennials as they create new workplace environments. This year, 84% of millennials report that they have some type of flexibility in the workplace. This increased freedom has expanded employee happiness and employer loyalty. In 2017, the difference between employees who want to leave their current company soon and those who plan to stay for more than five years is only seven points, a much smaller gap than reported on just one year ago.

    Purpose Matters More Than Ever

    While employee loyalty is growing, flexibility isn’t the only reason why. Millennials have consistently searched for meaning in their work and more and more businesses are responding to that desire.  In fact, 82% of millennials say that their employers are “directly involved in issues of personal concern or are supporting charities.” Millennials also report they are more likely to stay with an employer longer if that company "regularly engages in social issues." 

    From a consumer standpoint, 76% of millennials surveyed feel “business as a force for positive social change.” Millennials have asked businesses to pay attention to their social impact, and in many instances businesses are listening.

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    Oliver Russell Employees Volunteering at Toys for Tots

    Not So Different After All

    What impressed me about this year’s survey is that although the hard numbers might be changing, the values that have always resonated with millennials have not. Now more than ever, businesses and millennials are in a symbiotic relationship. Millennials have set a standard for change when it comes to work environments and social responsibility, but now they also recognize the value in the security of big (and small) business. As millennials and corporate enterprise continue to merge their values, the partnership seems fit for success just in time to welcome Gen Z into the mix. 

    If you ask us at Oliver Russell, our bottom line will always be purpose and we are ready to share it with all who ask.

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    Holly Conti

    Holly gets excited about a challenge. She started her career in the world of television where she learned how to execute several projects at once, a skill she uses daily as part of the Oliver Russell accounts team. Holly believes effective marketing starts with respect for the consumer. She is the Co-founder of Good Morning Guru, a wellness website dedicated to mindfulness and meditation. When she’s not in the office you can find her striking a pose on her yoga mat.