New Tech Empowers Millennials To Ignite Modern Workforce

Malcolm Woodfield

It’s no secret – digital business is changing the world. One of the biggest advances in recent technology is the move into the digital world. New technology holds great opportunity in the field of education, not only for students and teachers, but to each educational institution and the workforce as a whole.

Millennials offer value to the workforce

The millennial generation is made up of avid readers. They’re reading text messages and social content on an almost constant basis. They begin learning networking concepts at a young age and they have come to expect a system to work as fluidly as they can think. This is why early adopters of rising technology are so successful. Millennials feel drawn to them, and they are disappointed with user experiences that come off as “clunky” or inefficient.

Technology solves many problems in the workforce, but it can work only if people use it. Giving millennials the digital skills they are already interested in doesn’t only benefit the next generation of workers. It will help bring the current workforce up to speed with new processes. When a digital-savvy college student begins a job or internship, the new employee will begin to change the attitudes of the other workers. It is natural to this generation of social media users to share their experiences with others, especially when it adds efficiency to their lives.

For this to happen, universities must shift education business models to implement a learning process that is not only made better by these new technologies, but gives students first-hand experience with what they are learning. Students are gaining valuable experience with digital platforms while they pursue their educations. They’re using them to learn.

Emerging technology can aid in student progress

A smart interface means a lot more to a millennial than a sleek-looking app. Processes must interact with one another to create harmony. At the same time, too much information at once can become overwhelming, and so a balance is needed. A well-designed system allows the linked information that isn’t necessary to the function at hand to fade into the background.

Today’s students also crave performance feedback in real time. The days of taking an exam and finding out the results the following week are over; universities should embrace this.

Students also need software that can help them shape their paths going forward. They can be empowered by student-directed learning. The same system can be utilized to connect them with employment and internship opportunities, guiding students down the paths they have created.

Technology can improve faculty performance and university success

This process of tracking and real-time results can have very positive perks to the faculty as well. With the same system, student engagement can be boiled down to a simple measurement. This allows an institution to reward the professors who do their jobs very well.

When employees feel that their success is recognized, productivity and overall performance improves. Additionally, employees who feel appreciated are likely to pass that gratitude forward. They treat their coworkers with the same appreciation. Essentially, positive reinforcement will go viral.

But this is only part of the benefit a simple, integrated system can provide a university. The same type of student engagement metrics that track instructor performance can reveal which subjects the students find the most appealing. With that information, administrators can increase sessions of popular courses. They can also add new subjects to educational programs based on student interest and the evolving needs of the professional world. This concept also applies to the research management. University research funding can be allocated for the areas that have the most impact upon students and prospective employers.

Agility: a requirement for success

The world is connected by new technology. Hyper-connectivity allows people to pool resources on a global level, which means that advances are made very quickly and on a constant basis. As industries adapt to emerging opportunities and challenges, new positions are created and old ones are left behind. An employee must be versatile to successfully navigate these kinds of rapid changes.

At the same time, employers must have some way of recognizing the talents of their workers to best utilize them. In the past, it was not uncommon for a person to work for the same company from the beginning to end of his or her working life. According to Psychology Today, many workers in their 20’s now hold jobs for an average of two years.

Yet millennials feel a sense of commitment to corporate culture. They want to give their loyalty to a purpose bigger than themselves, to which they can make a strong contribution. A young employee who feels valued is likely to excel. This can be very powerful for the companies that know how to empower and encourage them.

To learn more about digital transformation in higher education, click here.


Malcolm Woodfield

About Malcolm Woodfield

Malcolm Woodfield is the Global Vice President, Head of Industry Business Unit Education & Research, at SAP. He manages a global team accountable for the overall business, market, customer, and revenue success of the Higher Education / Public Services portfolio (including all Applications, Analytics, Mobile, HANA, and Cloud) globally.