- Millennials and Gen Z have the highest expectations for the technology they use at work, according to a report published Tuesday by software company Riverbed. The company surveyed 1,800 IT leaders.
- Nearly all — 91% — decision-makers say they will need to provide more advanced digital experiences to meet the needs of millennials and Gen Z employees, which together account for roughly half of the workforce.
- Failing to meet the technology needs of younger employee generations would lead to attrition, more than two-thirds of IT leaders said in the survey. Another 63% say the mismatch between tech and expectations would impact a company's productivity or its reputation.
The balance for enterprise technology leaders is a complicated one to strike. They must infuse work experiences with technology to appease employee expectations while avoiding a saturation of digital tools.
Another obstacle is the gap in system modernization. Companies looking to plug in new digital technologies often find they have pending tasks in upgrading core systems or applications before they can fully modernize.
As needs for digital tools rise, AI, cloud and automation were listed by respondents as crucial for remaining a competitive employer in the current marketplace.
The pressure to outfit workers with tech speaks to the need for efficiency and in-house digital capabilities. But it's also a talent play, too; people want to work somewhere with appealing tech tools.
"CIOs need to be responsive to the technology needs of younger workers as fulfilling those requirements ensures a more engaged, productive workforce,” said Fernando Castanheira, global CIO at Riverbed, in an email.
IT talent continues to be in high demand for businesses across industries, as unemployment in technology positions trails behind the national average.
Despite the need for tech tools, CIOs must be careful of technology overload, according to Castanheira. "While it varies by industry, IT should prioritize business critical tools and SaaS apps that are integral to getting the most important work accomplished within their organization," he said.