- Deseret News - Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Millennials are breaking tradition by purchasing fewer homes and finishing more school, but their end goals aren’t all that different from their parents’.

Internet trends are short-lived and iPhones change yearly, but millennials are staying at their first jobs longer than their parents did. According to a recent White House report, “Millennials are less likely to have been with their employer for less than a year than Generation X workers were at the same age, and they are more likely to have been with their employer for a fairly long period, like three to six years.”

Millennials make up roughly a third of the American workforce, according to the council, and over half of U.S. executives report depending upon them for entry-level jobs, according to recent research by Oxford Economics.

Employers, however, are a bit off-base when it comes to judging the preferences of their new workforce. “Sixty-two percent of executives say millennials will consider leaving their jobs due to lack of learning and development, but 31 percent of millennials say they have considered this,” Oxford Economics reported. Only 18 percent of millennials are frustrated by the caliber of their managers, but 60 percent of executives think that they are; and just 30 percent of executives pay attention to millennials specifically to find out what they need.

Millennials are really not that much different than their predecessors when it comes to work preferences though. Almost half of both millennial and non-millennial Americans told Oxford Economics that quality of life is more important to them than their career trajectory. Sixty-eight percent of millennials reported that compensation was important to them, not much more than the 64 percent of non-millennials.

Where millennials do differ from their elders, however, is how they get to their career and handle their home finances.

The amount of adults in their 20s with student loan debt increased dramatically from 2005 to 2014 — from about 13 percent to 37 percent — while the percentage of 20-somethings with mortgages decreased, according to a recent TransUnion study. There are now fewer renters in this generation as well, according to the White House report, along with 3 percent more 18- to 34-year-olds living with their parents since 2007.

The increased student debt isn’t solely a reflection of the nation’s financial state though — there are just more young people going to college. Which, of course, is probably a response to our nation’s economic state. About 30 percent of adults 25 to 34 years of age had a postsecondary degree in 1992. Now, according to the White House report, nearly 50 percent of adults mid-20s to mid-30s have a degree.

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