Note: This article was filed by a paid contributor to Xerox Corporation.

With millennials finally overtaking the Baby Boomers as the largest generation, it is difficult for small business owners to ignore the 75.4 million people making a tremendous impact on the U.S. workforce.

As this generation starts to comprise a larger part of your workforce, how are you preparing your business for them? Millennials are known for being highly educated, easily distracted, and obsessed with technology, among other things—and this is something that many business owners have not taken into account yet.

There’s also the reputation Millennials have garnered for being job hoppers. While it is not fair to classify them all in that category, the statistics do prove that it is somewhat difficult to wrangle down and gain the loyalty of Millennials. Roughly 20% of millennials reported leaving a job within the last two years. That number jumps to 60% when you ask how many millennials would be willing to leave a job where they felt unfulfilled.

Is this something your business can afford to compensate for? Millennials may be an incredibly talented and intelligent bunch, but they come with a high price tag, especially if your business cannot retain them long enough to tap into their full potential. That is why things like transparency, employee loyalty initiatives, regularly reviews, and growth opportunities are all a must.

Every company handles internal policies and employee engagements differently, so it is hard to provide tips that will universally work for every company. However, focusing on the technology aspect is indeed something we can take a look at. Most millennials grew up surrounded by heavy technological influences, so this is something you should get on board with (if you have not already). It is this piece that will be critical in how well you are able to attract, hire, and retain millennial employees.

Here are some ways you can use technology to support this goal:

5 Business Technology Investments that Attract Millennials

1. Invest in next-generation technology.

If there’s one thing we actually understand about Millennials, it is the value they put on technology, especially when it is used effectively within the workplace.

They do not want to work with outdated hardware or software, and it might be fair to say they only want to work with cutting-dge, next-generation technology. It is not about an unwillingness to work with old machinery or a snobbery about their preferences being better than yours; it is about making smart decisions. If you make smart choices as a business owner about the technology you use to run it, they will correlate that with you being a smart company for them to invest in.

To impress your incoming millennial talent, be sure you have the right kinds of hardware on your side. A multifunction printer is an excellent place to start as it can be used for a variety of purposes and comes chock-full of functionality they will appreciate.

2. Encourage more efficient workflows.

Tied into this need to work with the latest and greatest technology to maintain a millennial-friendly environment comes the idea of using technology to work more efficiently. That is one of the reasons why Millennials gravitate towards next-gen tech so much; they understand the power it holds to cut down on waste and enhance productivity.

If you do not already have a smarter document workflow in place, this is something you should adopt soon. Better yet, ask your millennial employees for help. They love to feel like their insights and help are needed, and this would be an excellent opportunity to get their assistance.

3. Enable Millennials to work from wherever they want.

Medium-sized companies and large corporations are not the only ones who can afford to utilize a mobile workforce or give employees the freedom and flexibility to work from home. Small businesses can do this too; it is simply a matter of using the right tools to keep them productive and accountable even when they are not in the office.

What you will need to do is put a focus on the mobile device: What exactly would employees need to use it for? How can you make it integrate with your systems? Is there a way to make your in-house hardware and software systems more mobile user-friendly?

There are a variety of ways you can do this, but if we are looking at your copy, scan, and print environment to start, ConnectKey is the best way to give them what they want. In addition to providing users with an intuitive user interface, ConnectKey also:

  • Enables employees to print, scan, or share documents while they are out of the office.
  • Helps employees connect their mobile devices to the company’s multifunction printers using Wi-Fi.
  • Allows businesses to personalize the apps that are included within their print environment’s workflow for more streamlined processes.
  • And more.

4. Give Millennials an assurance of your integrity.

There are a plethora of ways you can show employees that you are a legit company to work for. An excellent way to do this when you are using next-gen technology to power your business is to keep it secure. Millennials will understand that those security measures—like Xerox’s partnership with McAfee—are in place not only to protect the longevity and reputation of your company but to protect them as well.

5. Stand for something.

Millennials love to work for businesses that have other goals besides making a lot of money. They want to know that you care about the community and the world outside of that small bubble, too. When it comes to technology, you can do this by going green. Work with a partner like Xerox who cares about the environment as much as you do, get your team involved in recycling, and reinforce good energy efficiency practices.

Millennials are a much different demographic from any that we have worked with in years past. Thankfully, because of their strong preference for and reliance on technology, it is becoming easier for small business owners to create a work environment that’s not only appealing for them to join but one in which they want to invest in for the long-term.

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