The Deloitte Global Millennial Survey, now in its ninth year, reveals millennials and Gen Z to be resilient in the face of adversity, determined to drive positive change in their communities and around the world.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has radically shifted our way of life—how we work, socialize, shop, and more—and young generations were especially impacted,” says Michele Parmelee, Deloitte Global Chief People and Purpose Officer. “However, despite uncertain and discouraging conditions, millennials and Gen Zs express impressive resiliency and a resolve to improve the world. As we rebuild our economies and society, young people will be critical in shaping the world that emerges.”
One of the stand-out findings was that the survey recorded a drop of more than 20 percentage points vis-à-vis the previous one, of millennials and Gen Zs who wanted to leave the organization within two years. There was also a rise in those who wanted to stay beyond five years. Actions taken by employers to support employees, especially the focus on people before profits during the pandemic, has contributed to these high scores.
Here are some major highlights of the survey:
- Both millennials and GenZ are looking forward to sustained opportunities to work from home.
- The urge to make a positive impact on the environment and society came across clearly.
- Indian respondents are pleased with employers prioritising people over profits. This reflects in increased employer loyalty numbers.
- A high proportion of Indian respondents are confident about policymakers’ speed of response and steps to safeguard workers during the crisis.
“For businesses, the increased confidence that millennials and Gen Zs have shown towards them should serve as a catalyst for further measures to help people grow and thrive. It’s clear that purpose-driven organizations will have an upper hand in the post-COVID world,” said S.V. Nathan, Chief Talent Officer, Deloitte India.
Stress and mental wellness—often amplified by work and financial concerns—remain critical issues
In the primary survey, 54% of Gen Zs and 57% of millennials in India said they were stressed all or most of the time. Respondents cited family welfare, long-term finances, and job prospects as primary sources of stress. Despite the slight declines seen in the pulse survey, stress and mental wellness remain critical issues for young generations and these issues are manifested in work settings. Approximately 69% of millennials and 67% Gen Zs took time off work due to stress before the pandemic, though some of them told their employers it was for a different reason. Encouragingly, flexible working arrangements—which were widely implemented as a result of the pandemic—may present one solution. 86% of millennials and 83% of Gen Zs agreed having the option to work from home in the future would relieve stress.
“While organisations focus on upskilling and reskilling, there is a need to encourage a culture in which it’s okay to ask for help, to care for each other, and to address emotional distress in an environment free of judgement and misconceptions,” said Nathan. “Millennials and Gen Zs have been delivering results over the past few months in spite of a way of working that’s new to most.
So it’s only justified that organizations should do their part to alleviate people’s stress levels,” he added.
The report also highlights how the consequences of the pandemic have dramatically affected the careers of young workers. Compared to the countries included in the pulse survey, a higher than average proportion of Indian respondents reported reduction in their income/bonus, withdrawal or deferment of job offers or promotions, working longer hours, being placed on unpaid leave, or losing a source of income altogether. The persistent positive outlook towards employers presents an interesting juxtaposition to these numbers.
The survey consisted of two parts: a “primary” survey of 18,426 millennials and Gen Zs across 43 countries conducted between November 2019 and early January 2020, and a “pulse” survey of 9,100 individuals over 13 countries taken between April and May of 2020 in the midst of the worldwide pandemic.