What’s driving this preference for video as a business tool? Well, along with Generation Y’s familiarity with the technology, it’s that video is uniquely suited to creating or supporting four important characteristics Millennials often seek in their working environments.
Phonebook-sized handbooks, day-long in-person training sessions, four-page instructional emails, and hour-long meetings presented with no prior information… finding information in many modern organizations is the modern equivalent of finding a needle in a haystack — a haystack that’s only open from 9-5.
Millennials are used to the world of academia, where it’s a safe bet nearly all those information sources would be shared by video and available on-demand. A modern video platform can make any of these types of videos available and searchable, anytime, anywhere, and ready to play on any device. In a world where, according to IDC, knowledge workers spend 8 hours a week just searching for the information they need to do their jobs, on-demand information is critical for working productively.
Today’s college grads grew up online, with all the knowledge of the world readily available at their next search query. As they step out of the world of carefully sequenced curriculum, they’ve come to expect information right when it’s valuable, structured in simple, digestible chunks to ensure the message can be understood.
A single, massive product guide or intensive weeklong training session are an anathema to this group — they don’t want everything all at once, just the specifics they need at exactly the moment they need them.
That might be why “the face-to-face classroom is no longer the norm,” as writes Forrester Research. To better support today’s learners as Millennials enter the workforce, the firm recommends organizations instead adopt self-paced learning material accessed online, including discussion groups, wikis and resource centers, and of course, video from both the training team and internal subject matter experts. These kinds of resources let Millennials (and all your other employees, too) learn what they need, when they need it, while offering the opportunity to learn more on-demand.
Malcolm Gladwell has famously stated that millennials are more about ‘the network’ than ‘the hierarchy’. Forrester Research agrees, finding that Millennials prefer to learn from peers, contribute to employee networks, and find answers to their questions with a quick instant message to an expert colleague.
That’s good news for businesses, because collaboration isn’t just a more enjoyable way to get more done — it actually works better, too. Studies show that 70% to 80% of on-the-job learning comes from informal knowledge sharing rather than formal training, and that employee productivity and problem solving capabilities are improved more by social learning than by innovation.
Video is already becoming an essential collaboration tool in most organizations, as video conferencing and web conferencing technologies enhance our ability to trade ideas by allowing users to share screens and attend live events online. And more and more organizations are finding that internal video libraries can quickly become “corporate YouTubes,” filled with answers to questions from subject matter experts, advice from veteran employees, and other valuable institutional knowledge that would previously have gone unrecorded.
There may be no trait more quintessential of the members of Generation Y than their quest for fulfillment at work, right from day one at their very first job. Studies indicate Millennials will choose corporate culture and meaningful work above everything else, even a bigger paycheck. “They want to know that the work they are doing is having an impact on their co-workers, on their manager and on the company at large,” Forbes Magazine concludes. “They won’t stay at a company long if they are doing busy work the whole time.”
This quest for meaning is shared by many non-millennials, of course. High-level managers and leaders also desire greater fulfillment at work—for themselves, and for their employees. They want their voices to be heard on a regular basis and to contribute to the company in a meaningful way. The difference between the older and younger generations is that the younger generation doesn’t just desire this—they expect it. At home, social networks and other new communication technologies enable them to contribute ideas and seek out new information at any time. It should come as no surprise, then, that giving them the tools to accomplish the same at work increases their job satisfaction to a significant degree.
Video, of course, is one of these tools. As both an active medium, giving workers the ability to share knowledge and ideas, and an interactive medium, allowing for collaborative learning, video enables more meaningful workplace participation. Employees can use video to meet remotely, create their own best practice and FAQ videos and more. Best of all, the content they create can be placed in a secure, searchable video library or VCMS (video content management system), so that it is never lost or forgotten. This means that the videos employees create — no matter who they are on the corporate hierarchy — will be truly valuable contributions, ones that last for years to come.
Find out more!
Learn more in our latest free white paper, Motivating Millennials: How to Use Video to Help the Next Generation of Employees Succeed.
In this paper, you’ll learn how your organization can support video to help your next generation of employees succeed, including: