Comprising a quarter of the US population, Millennials equate to approximately 83.1 million people. It is projected that by 2025, Millennials will comprise 75% of the global workforce. As the largest and most diverse generation to date, it is important to understand their motivations and predispositions in order to create desirable workplaces with proper cybersecurity to protect a businesses’ intellectual capital and data.
Millennials have had lifelong exposure to the internet and are the first generations to be continuously connected. They are comfortable with, and naturally embrace, cutting edge technology such as cloud computing, mobile technology and other applications. Technology is woven into their being and they rely on it as an essential element in their life. Millennials simply know no other way.
To this point, a Nielsen study reported that more than 85% of Millennials have smartphones and use them approximately 45 times a day. It has also been noted that 87% use 2 to 3 tech devices at least once a day. They make efficient use of mobile devices and internet and believe these tools make them work smarter.
Millennials are “digital natives” being some of the first to adopt social media, smartphones and mobile apps. With a lifelong reliance on technology, they expect immediate access to resources whenever and wherever they want them. Instant answers to questions, easy access to data, and the seamless flow of information makes increased collaboration possible, improving performance of individuals and teams. Millennials tend to be always on the move, with the need of anytime, anywhere access on multiple devices. Millennials often telecommute, replacing office desks with virtual offices at home and really from anywhere. Cloud based communication and collaboration enable easy access to files and documents so remote employees can work on the same projects, meet and stay in touch.
With “no technology fear” and a more tech savvy, “self-serve” mentality, they have transformed the nature of the corporate IT infrastructure. Millennials like and trust the convenience provided by the cloud and have no fear of relying on it to store and share confidential information despite the fact that this can pose a business risk if platforms are not secured or managed by reputable providers. Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) policies permit workers to shift seamless between personal and business tasks. Millennials tend to ignore corporate IT rules with one study conducted by TrackVia revealing that 70% admitted to bringing outside applications into the enterprise, and reporting 60% were unconcerned about corporate security when using personal apps instead of corporate apps. In contrast, Millennials are 71% more likely than co-workers to use basic data back-up, but are more careless with passwords, with only 33% using secure passwords as opposed to 53% of their Baby Boomer peers.
While companies have experienced the upside of fantastic productivity and efficiency as well as the reduced need and expense of buying devices, they are now faced with the new security issues related to sensitive data being on a multitude of devices. Corporate leadership needs to adjust and ensure that company data and applications are hosted in highly secure environments that provide round the clock access for this new class of workers. As firms move to the cloud to optimize efficiency, reduce and control costs, they need to purposefully establish processes to ensure seamless and robust security for business operations.
Author: Amy Humphreys
Comtel Communications, a telecom/technology consulting agency based in Richmond, Virginia since 1991, provides best-in-class solutions and unbiased counsel to a diverse group of small, medium, and enterprise-level businesses, totaling more than $18.2M in annual billings. Leveraging unique access to 350+ national and international providers, Comtel benefits its clients through competitive quotes from multiple sources, to ensure their business goals are met with current and dynamic telecom and technology services. Acting as a partner, long after contracts are signed and services are deployed, Comtel offers superb back-office support to manage upgrades, track orders, and provide training to clients.