Millennials Weigh In on Tech and the Future of Work

1 - Millennials Weigh In on Tech and the Future of Work
2 - Young Workers Are Aware of Future Challenges in the Workplace
3 - Strong Optimism About Future Job Prospects, Despite Challenges
4 - Education Fails to Prepare Many Young People for Working Life
5 - Employers Fall Short of Employees' Training Expectations
6 - Many Need to Learn New Skills After Entering the Workforce
7 - Skills Gap Is More Evident in Developed Markets
8 - Young People Will Choose Stability and Progression Over Startups
9 - What's Driving Change in Young Workers' Lives?
10 - Young People Compare Their Generation's and Their Parents' Prospects
11 - Gender divide is more pronounced in developed markets
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Millennials Weigh In on Tech and the Future of Work

A new study reveals how Millennials and other young workers perceive the role technology plays in their lives and how this affects the future of work.

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Young Workers Are Aware of Future Challenges in the Workplace

Across all markets, an average of four in 10 young people can envision their current jobs being replaced by a robot or artificial intelligence machine over the next decade. In the United State alone, 41 percent of young people believe their jobs could be replaced by a robot or computer within the next 10 years.

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Strong Optimism About Future Job Prospects, Despite Challenges

In general, young people today are optimistic about the future of their careers. On average, almost two-thirds across global markets feel positive about their job prospects. However, optimism is more widespread in emerging markets, especially when considering those who are "very optimistic." In Brazil, three-quarters are positive about their futures. In India and China, a third of respondents reported feeling "very optimistic." In developed markets, particularly Australia, less than half feel the same way although the younger respondents (ages 16 to 19) are more positive.

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Education Fails to Prepare Many Young People for Working Life

Despite a broadly positive view toward their education, significant numbers of young people across all markets question how well their academic experiences equipped them for their careers. Across all markets, an average of 42 percent report that their education did not prepare them for what to expect from working life, and 45 percent believe traditional academic education is old-fashioned.

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Employers Fall Short of Employees' Training Expectations

Young people have high expectations of employer commitment in relation to their personal development. In all markets, at least seven in 10 agree that employers should be prepared to train employees throughout their careers. However, at the early stage in their working life, there is already a gap between young people's training expectations and the reality of what employers have delivered.

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Many Need to Learn New Skills After Entering the Workforce

Over two-thirds of young workers in all markets claim they have had to learn new skills for their current jobs, rising to almost 80 percent in the United Kingdom, United States and Australia. They report that innovators are generating new technologies and companies are on-boarding new technologies far faster than corporate learning functions are uplifting employee skills or updating corporate curricula.

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Skills Gap Is More Evident in Developed Markets

Across all markets, young people are largely united in their view that those who are not skilled in technology will find it increasingly difficult to secure a job in the future. On average, two-thirds agree with this position—particularly in China, Brazil, Australia, the United Kingdom and the United States.

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Young People Will Choose Stability and Progression Over Startups

Only 5 percent in the United States said they would prefer working at a startup over a larger, more stable company. Young people today are often perceived as being attracted to more entrepreneurial career paths, and the idea of being a self-starter is certainly attractive to this generation: At least half in all markets say they would like to start their own business one day.

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What's Driving Change in Young Workers' Lives?

Mobile Internet, the cloud, AI and machine learning ranked as the top four drivers of change that will impact young workers' work lives until 2020. Given the relatively short time horizons and the conceptual nature of many of these drivers, the fact that more than 20 percent ranked most drivers in their top three shows a firm grasp of future challenges.

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Young People Compare Their Generation's and Their Parents' Prospects

Overall, 55 percent of men and 69 percent of women in the United States said their job prospects are worse than they were for their parents' generation. This sentiment is particularly strong in developed markets, suggesting greater confidence and optimism among young people in emerging markets.

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Gender divide is more pronounced in developed markets

In all markets, male respondents are more likely than their female counterparts to possess and be interested in technological and digital skills. The United States has less of a gender divide than other developed markets—51 percent of men and 42 percent of women rated themselves as "tech gurus" or "helping hands."

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