In the rapidly evolving and dynamic workplace of today, organizations are tirelessly exploring strategies to recruit and sustain their best employees.

One of the most significant shifts in the workforce has been the rise of remote work and the demand for more flexibility in the workplace. This trend is particularly evident among Millennials and Gen Z, who are now the largest generations in the workforce. In this blog post, we’ll delve into why younger generations are advocating for increased flexibility in remote work, more options for devices and laptops, and a willingness to embrace new technologies, and examine how these attitudes contrast with those of Gen X and Baby Boomers and the impact it could have on tech, and innovation in the future.

The Rise of Remote Work and Flexible Schedules

The traditional 9-5 office job is becoming a thing of the past, as more and more companies are embracing remote work and flexible schedules. In the past, employees had to go into an office to get the equipment and technology they needed to do their jobs. That’s no longer the case. 

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In large part, this shift has been driven by the younger generations who are digital natives – meaning they grew up with technology, smartphones, social media and digital communication from an early age. They value work-life balance and the ability to work from anywhere. According to a survey by FlexJobs, 84% of millennials and 74% of Gen Z want more remote work options, compared to only 49% of Gen X and 32% of Baby Boomers.Image courtesy of Nathana Rebouças

But, the desire for remote work and flexible schedules isn’t just about convenience; it also has a significant impact on employee satisfaction and productivity. A study by Owl Labs found that remote workers are 22% happier in their jobs and 91% feel more productive when working remotely. This is likely because remote work allows employees to have more control over their schedules and eliminates the stress of commuting, resulting in a better work-life balance.

The Great Resignation and RTO Backlash

The Great Resignation also had an impact on remote work trends. The Great Resignation refers to the significant number of employees voluntarily leaving their jobs during the COVID-19 pandemic. This phenomenon led to a reevaluation of work priorities with many employees seeking more flexibility to work from home, better work-life balance, and remote work options.

And now, the companies that are demanding their remote workforce come back to the office are facing backlash. During the pandemic, not only did people embrace work/life balance but many people relocated to take advantage of work from home roles so that they could live in locations that better suited them. This was especially true for young families who moved to have more space for their growing families. So, for many, the Return to Office (RTO) mandates have greatly impacted their commute times and family responsibilities making it much more difficult for employees to get back into the office. 

This has forced many companies to adapt to these changing preferences by shifting their RTO strategies or by offering more remote work opportunities to attract and retain talent.

The Need for More Device and Laptop Choices

Another emerging trend in the workplace is the demand for more device and laptop choices. This is particularly true for younger generations, who are used to having a wide range of options when it comes to technology. According to a survey by Dell, 82% of Millennials and 75% of Gen Z believe that technology makes them more productive at work, and 42% of them say that having the latest technology is essential to their job satisfaction. With Gen Z having grown up with technology, they are sensitive to friction and have low tolerance for legacy tech issues. 

Having a choice in devices and laptops not only allows employees to work more efficiently, but it also gives them a sense of control over their work environment. This is especially important for remote workers, who rely on their devices to stay connected and productive. By providing a variety of device and laptop options, companies can attract and retain top talent from the younger generations.

Millennials and Gen Z also care more about sustainability compared to older generations. This concern for sustainability is another reason why they support having one laptop – vs one for work and one for personal –  as it aligns with their values of reducing waste and environmental i

mpact by minimizing the number of electronic devices they use.

Adaptability: The Openness to Trying New Technologies

Millennials and Gen Z are known for being early adopters of new tech, and this is also true for them in the workplace. These generations are open to trying new technologies and are quick to embrace tools that can make their work more efficient and productive. Not only do they expect change, they make change happen. According to a survey by Adobe, 70% of millennials and 67% of Gen Z say that technology makes them more productive at work, compared to only 53% of Gen X and 38% of Baby Boomers.

The younger generations are also more likely to use technology for collaboration and communication. They are comfortable with tools like video conferencing, instant messaging, and project management software, which allow them to work seamlessly with their remote colleagues. This openness to trying new technologies not only improves productivity but also creates a more innovative and dynamic work environment.

Gen X and Baby Boomers – Is Gen X the Bridge?

While Millennials and Gen Z are pushing for more remote work flexibility, device and laptop choices, and new technologies, Gen X and Baby Boomers have a different perspective. These generations grew up in a time when the traditional office job was the norm, and they are more accustomed to a structured work environment. 

These generations may see remote work as a perk, but not a necessity, and may prefer to have a designated office space rather than working from home. They may also be more hesitant to try new technologies, as they may not be as comfortable with technology as the younger generations who grew up with it. Technology can be seen as a distraction rather than a productivity tool. 

However, this does not mean that they are not open to change. It’s worth noting that Gen X is often seen as the most flexible generation in the workplace. They are known for their ability to adapt to change and their willingness to embrace new technologies and adapt to new workstyles. This makes them a valuable asset to companies looking to bridge the gap between the traditional and modern workplace. Baby Boomers, on the other hand, may be perceived as more set in their ways due to their experience with more traditional work environments and technologies.

What will Happen When Generation Alpha Enters the Workforce?

What will happen once Generation Alpha enters the workforce? This generation is expected to be even more tech-savvy and digitally native compared to previous generations. They are likely to expect even more advanced technologies, seamless integration of digital tools, increased flexibility in work arrangements, and a strong focus on sustainability and social responsibility from their employers.  They’re set to disrupt culture, the economy, and our workplaces. 

The Importance of Meeting the Demands of Younger Generations

Gen Z employees, those workers born between 1997 and 2012, are entering your organization and will account for 27% of the workforce by 2025. So, as Millennials and Gen Z dominate the workforce, it’s essential for companies to meet their demands for remote work flexibility, device and laptop choices, and new technologies. Not only does this attract and retain top talent, but it also creates a more productive and innovative work environment. Companies that fail to adapt to the changing demands of the younger generations risk falling behind their competitors and losing out on top talent.

In conclusion, millennials and Gen Z are driving the demand for more remote work flexibility, device and laptop choices, and new technologies in the workplace.

This trend is not just about convenience; it has a significant impact on employee satisfaction and productivity. While Gen X and Baby Boomers may have different attitudes towards these changes, it’s essential for companies to meet the demands of the younger generations to stay competitive in today’s fast-paced work environment. By embracing remote work and providing a variety of device and laptop options, companies can attract and retain top talent and create a more productive and innovative work culture.

Venn: Embracing Work+Life and BYO-PC Flexibility

At Venn we have a Work + Life Purpose. We want to help people in all generations thrive – to be at their best, every day. We are technologists committed to a more human concept of how better lives get lived and better work gets done. We support every individual’s pursuit for a renewed sense of passion, potential, control and contentment. We empower people with the tools they need and the trust they deserve to work at their own pace, in their own space. 

We developed the first purpose-built technology for Secure BYO-PC. Venn secures remote work on any unmanaged or BYOD computer with a radically simplified and less costly solution than virtual desktops or having to lock down every PC. Security and compliance-driven companies gain protection for what counts and employees enjoy more freedom in device choice, flexibility and privacy. 

Learn more about Venn.


Heather Howland

Heather Howland

SVP Marketing

Responsible for championing the Venn brand, building awareness, and accelerating growth. With 20+ years of marketing experience and various marketing leadership roles, I'm passionate about bringing new technologies to market.