Three people collaborating and looking at a computer

Going Micro: How Companies Can Meet Millennials’ Desire for Continual Learning

Millennials value continual development in the workplace. See how microlearning can help to meet the expectations of this generation.

Millennials have a different set of workplace values than previous generations. They desire a work-life balance, appreciation from management, and a chance to grow and learn in their company. Millennials expect that their company will provide them with the tools to continue development throughout their careers.

Continual learning is a major selling point for many millennials. In Gallup’s report How Millennials Want to Work and Live, 87 percent of millennials responded that professional development is “very important” to them at work. [ii]

According to this report: “Millennials are not pursuing job satisfaction — they are pursuing development. Giving out toys and entitlements is a leadership mistake, and worse, it’s condescending. Purpose and development drive this generation.” [iii]

To recruit and retain this young workforce, organizations would be best served to invest in continual learning programs.

Adjusting to the Millennial Mindset

Although millennials value workplace development, don’t expect them to be excited about sitting in a three-day-long training session. Millennials want a program that they can spend just a few minutes on a day. This generation moves fast, and they don’t want to waste too much time on one single task.

When developing a training program for millennials, remember:

  • Millennials learn best in “short, digestible chunks that they can quickly absorb.”
  • Millennials respond better to “animations, videos and other moving images.” These teaching tactics are especially important when trying to highlight key points.
  • Millennials were raised using mobile devices, and expect that they can take everything on the go, including their lessons. [iv]

Millennials and Microlearning

Microlearning is an ideal corporate learning solution for younger employees. Microlearning allows any employee to learn and refine critical competencies in just minutes a day — allowing them to improve as an employee, team member, coach and supervisor.

With an overload of information available for millennials, it is important to make your microlearning program stand out. The most effective microlearning programs are offered in rich media formats, including videos and short tutorials. Millennials will respond well to this familiar and informal method.

Additionally, most microlearning programs offer a mobile component, so that employees can take their lessons anywhere. This level of accessibility is very attractive to millennials (as well as your other generations), as multi-tasking is an important aspect of their life.

The most important thing to remember, however, is that millennials genuinely want to learn and grow as employees. Provide relevant, exclusive information that they can put into practice immediately to see the best results.

A specified corporate learning solution that utilizes microlearning best practices, such as EBSCO’s Accel5, can provide the framework necessary to leverage continual development at your company. This program features unique videos, articles and business book summaries from the top minds in business.

Learn how Accel5 can accelerate your millennial outreach with microlearning.


  • [ii] How Millennials Want to Work and Live. Gallup, Inc., 2016, pp. 1–21, How Millennials Want to Work and Live.
  • [iii] How Millennials Want to Work and Live. Gallup, Inc., 2016, pp. 1–21, How Millennials Want to Work and Live.
  • [iv] Hackel E. Let’s Take the Mystery Out of Training Millennials. Professional Safety [serial online]. May 2016;61(5):28. Available from: Business Source Complete, Ipswich, MA. Accessed July 31, 2017.

Interested to see what Accel5 has to offer?

Start your Free Trial