Illustration of Gen Z and millennial workers talking to each other.
Image: © artbesouro/

Which technologies do Gen Z and millennial workers want?

29 Apr 2021

Gen Z and millennial workers prefer greater mobility, tech autonomy and software diversity. And companies need to take note.

It might seem as though we’ve only just gotten to grips with a slew of new technologies while working remotely, but companies need to stay on their toes when it comes to employee requirements and expectations.

In a recent report, research and advisory company Forrester outlined the importance of choosing the right types of technology for younger generations of workers.

“Businesses preparing for the future of work must understand the changing technology preferences among four workforce generations,” it says. “Each generation comes with its unique needs to ensure an optimal technology experience, but tech leaders must be wary of over-reliance on generational data.”

The report explains some of the differences in technology preferences across generations. It says that in 2020, Gen X and millennials made up roughly 80pc of the workforce. But by 2030, the majority (74pc) will be Gen Z and millennials, as Gen X and baby boomers retire.

Forrester looked at how Gen Z and millennial preferences differ from older generations in five key areas: mobility, hardware, software diversity, security and privacy.

In terms of mobility, for example, it says that younger workers have tended to work in more locations than older workers, whether that’s at home, during their commute, in a co-working space or at a client site.

Younger workers might also might expect more computing options and more autonomy when it comes to choosing the devices, apps and services they use for work. Younger workers are also more likely than Gen X and baby boomers to deal with their own device security and choose their own security software.

Traditional productivity tools, such as email and spreadsheets, are still used by younger workers, according to Forrester, but not as much their older colleagues. In terms of email, 42pc of Gen Z said they use it weekly, compared to 76pc of baby boomers.

Gen Z and millennials, meanwhile, are much more likely to use applications such as voice recognition, virtual assistants, design and drawing tools, and augmented and virtual reality.

Lisa Ardill
By Lisa Ardill

Lisa Ardill joined Silicon Republic as senior careers reporter in July 2019. She has a BA in neuroscience and a master’s degree in science communication. She is also a semi-published poet and a big fan of doggos. Lisa briefly served as Careers Editor at Silicon Republic before leaving the company in June 2021.

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