The 2016 Gallup report “How Millennials Want to Work and Live” found that 79 percent of millennial workers are either not engaged or actively disengaged in their current roles. With the millennial generation making up more than a third of the country’s workforce — and projected to reach 75 percent by 2025 — this is a critical concern for employers. Not only are unengaged millennials more likely to seek other job opportunities, but a lack of engagement results in lowered productivity, higher accidents rates, and decreased profitability. In order to better connect with and motivate these employees, companies need to understand what millennials are looking for in a job and a workplace.  

Millennial Work Ideals

One of the key factors for engagement with employees of any generation is clear expectations. In order to feel connected with their work, employees need to have a precise understanding of their responsibilities and of how the organization measures their success. For millennial workers, these job expectations are even more important — and they prefer more performance clarity than a simple list of goals. This rising force of workers seeks further feedback on accomplishing tasks, including prioritized responsibilities and more real-time accountability to know that they are on the right track. Using leaderboards are an easy way to track KPIs and stay up-to-date on progress.  

The Value of Real-Time Feedback

The traditional feedback method used by many companies — annual or even quarterly performance reviews — is rarely timely enough to be helpful and often too generic to even be actionable. By contrast, real-time feedback provides ongoing insights that employees can use to ensure they are meeting expectations. In addition to feedback, instant recognition for your employees can also reinforce good habits and turn them into long-term behaviors. This is particularly crucial for a millennial workforce that is accustomed to having immediate access to information and feedback. In fact, 85 percent of this unique employee group indicated that more frequent communications around performance would give them more confidence.  

Technology for Real-Time Conversations

Modern technology offers the solution to making possible the kind of real-time feedback that millennial employees crave. The right tracking software can not only offer team members clear specific goals, but also a convenient, real-time method to view their progress toward those goals. This gives them the immediate feedback they want while also providing additional motivation to achieve performance standards. Digital leaderboards are the perfect compliment to this software, allowing businesses to recognize high-performing individuals and teams in real-time as well. Highlighting achievements in this manner will keep millennial employees and their colleagues motivated and engaged in their roles.  

Digital Dashboards and Engagement

6S Marketing is just one example of companies pairing real-time metrics and dashboard displays to boost team motivation and employee engagement. Displaying both company and individual analytics in real-time via Hoopla, the organization used the feed to offer “a visual representation of the effects of their hard work.” Sales leaderboards and a gong sound for each closed sale, along with Instagram photos and themed designs, kept the 6S Marketing engaged and excited about their work and about meeting company goals. Traditional review methods are not enough to engage and motivate employees in the digital age — especially millennial employees who are used to immediate feedback. Real-time metrics and prominently displayed leaderboards give companies a way to keep team members instantly updated on their performance and their progress toward individual and company goals. For more information on how gamification and these digital tools can boost your team performance, check out our eBooks and other resources on driving performance.