The Generations React During Our Teleconference On “Gen Y And The Future Of The Workplace”

Claire Schooley

Claire-Schooley by Claire Schooley

TJ Keitt, Heidi Lo and I presented a Forrester Teleconference about the Millennial or GenY on September 2, 2009. The multi-generational chat was by far the most active I’ve seen during a Teleconference with over 100 entries in an hour. TJ and I presented for a half hour and then opened the phone lines for voice questions. Heidi handled the tweets. Having two co-presenters helped us to participate in the chat. Because the pace of chat was so fast with so many conversations, participants were reacting to comments of others rather than just responding to a presenter comment or question. It was dynamic and truly community generated.

The premise of the teleconference was that the youngest generation in the workforce (Gen Y or Millennials) is neither revolutionizing the workforce (yet) nor acting as entitled employees. Some of the highlights of the participant interaction follow:

  • “It’s hard to get a job because as a new grad we can’t meet the ‘years of experience’ requirement.” Recommendation: Apply anyway. Be tenacious and prove that you can do the job.  One Baby Boomer participant is about to start a company that mentors new employees at corporate customers to address this “experience” requirement. Another GenYer suggested using your social network to reach the hiring manager. Another said that that GenXers in an organization can be excellent mentors for the GenYers.
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Application Development Professionals Must Take The User Experience Bull By The Horns

Mike Gualtieri

Developers can write efficient and elegant code.

  • Architects can choose cost effective and flexible platforms.
  • Quality assurance and testing pros can make sure it works bug free.
  • Business analysts can uncover and document key requirements.
  • Project managers can craft a plan to get the app written on-time.
  • Managers can make sure that it is all done within the budget.
  • CIO's can find talent and put together teams.

This Prowess Is All For Naught If You Don't Get The User Experience Right!

But, this technical, process, and management prowess is all for naught if you cannot design a compelling user experience (UX) that is useful, usable, and desirable.

Ux_definition

Application Development Pros Are No Less Capable Of Learning UX Design Than Anyone Else.

Unfortunately, many application development professionals are unlearned when it comes to knowing how to design user experiences that makes users say "Wow!". It is not that they don't want to design great user experiences. They do. It is just that no one ever taught them how.

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A Day In The Life Of An Information Worker

Ted Schadler

Ted-Schadler by Ted Schadler

How do information workers -- people that use computers or smartphones in their job -- spend their days?

We set out to answer that question using our new Workforce Technographics(R) data. In our launch survey to understand how regular people use computers, smartphones, and applications to get their work done, we surveyed 2,001 people in the US with jobs in which they use a computer. We asked about all kinds of things, including how much time they spend with their computers and phones, which applications they use daily or even hourly, what applications they find indispensable, whether they work mostly with other employees or with customers or partners, and much more.

Our first report is a quick snapshot of a day in the life of an information worker (iWorker). (We'll be sharing a lot more data at a Webinar on Thursday at 11 AM ET; register here.) For example, did you know that:

  • Gen X (not Gen Y) is the most likely to use Web 2.0 technology to get their job done?

  • Smartphones are available to only 11% of US information workers?

  • Email is still the only application used on an hourly basis by most iWorkers?

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Analysis from Microsoft TechEd 2009 - Take 1

Gen Y and the Future of the Workplace: Recapping Our Discussion With Forrester Clients

TJ Keitt

Followers of my posts on this blog have seen a consistent theme: what does the influx of young workers mean for the present and future business world? Yesterday afternoon my colleagues Clarie Schooley and Heidi Shey joined me in hosting 82 Forrester clients for an open and frank discussion on this topic. The conversation, which included participants across the age spectrum, was spirited and landed on a few broad concepts:

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Consumer Market Research Techniques: A Primer For IT Professionals

Ted Schadler

Ted-Schadler by Ted Schadler

Employees are people, too.They just don't look like you. At least most of them don't. To understand what your workforce needs from technology and from you, you have to walk a mile in their shoes.

That's hard to do -- not to mention darn uncomfortable at times! But it is possible to get to know your workforce by grouping them by who they are and what they need from you. There are three techniques that consumer market researchers have developed over the last 40 years to do just that:

  1. Surveys to analyze and segment the workforce. This is step one and something that we'll drill into more detail on over the next few blog posts. Asking good questions, making sure everybody's represented, doing analysis that helps you answer your key questions, this is where the best analysis begins. You'll come up with segments like "technology enthusiasts" and "road warriors."

  2. Focus groups to bring the segments to life. Once the segments are identified, you can invite 5 or 6 people to come in and talk about what they do and what they need from technology. This gives you the "why" and the "how" to go along with the "what" that the survey and segmentation provide. With focus groups, a road warrior starts to look like a real person.

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Gen Y’s Effect On Business Social Technology Isn’t As Big As Some Have Said

TJ Keitt

Here’s a funny finding: The youngest members of the workforce aren’t the drivers of social technology use in business. How can this be? Haven’t we been told that the generation that made MySpace and Facebook popular would be the one that dragged stodgy, old companies kicking and screaming into a 21st century where corporate hierarchy is flattened through Web 2.0? Don’t companies need to adopt wikis and blogs in order to recruit and retain Gen Yers? Well, the early returns say the answer is, “no.”

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The Millennials, The Next Power Generation in the Workforce

Claire Schooley

Claire, in her podcast, discusses the rise of the millenial in  the workforce - and strategies for most effectively using their skills.

http://a964.g.akamaitech.net/f/964/714/1h/www.forrester.com/role_based/images/author/imported/forresterDotCom/Podcasts/BPA/ClaireSchooley_Millenials.mp3

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How Tech Vendors Should Approach Green IT

Chris Mines

Christopher Mines [Posted by Christopher Mines]

My colleague Doug Washburn and I did a Forrester Webinar yesterday for tech vendor clients & prospects. We closed with 6 takeaways for tech vendors seeking to capitalize on the mega-trend of sustainability adoption by their corporate customers:

  1. Corporate sustainability is here to stay; green IT is not a fad or a fashion.
  2. Energy efficiency is important for all IT assets, not just the data center.

  3. Enterprises implementing green IT need process change and consulting support, not just new hardware and software.

  4. Vendors must market their green solutions with a holistic vision and a tactical implementation path.
  5. Green IT has many customer stakeholders, each with a different view of its priority and benefits. VEndors must be multi-lingual in developing conversations with these stakeholders.

  6. Be clear about the cost-benefit arithmetic. Help customers build their business case with ROI numbers that are clear, simple, and complete.

Survey Your Workforce To Understand Their Technology Needs

Ted Schadler

Ted-Schadler by Ted Schadler

Go to a baseball game and look around. Do the fans all look like you? Do they want what you want or think how you think or feel the way you feel about stuff? Nope. Baseball fans are diverse, unique, different, special. They have only one thing in common: They like baseball.

It's the same at work. Your workforce is just as diverse, unique, different, special. They have only one thing in common: They work for the same organization.

It's a simple but profound observation: Most people aren't like you. You can't apply your own thinking or feeling to them. For example, they don't necessarily like technology. They might avoid technology because it scares or mystifies them. They could stick with what they know until someone forces them to switch.

Need proof? Half of all information workers are pessimistic about technology. Only 1 in 4 uses instant messaging. 62% aren't fully satisfied with their word processor.

On the other hand, the other half of information workers are optimistic about technology. And some employees are wildly enthusiastic about technology. They bring their own smartphones to work -- and use them to work from every location. They use social network sites for work. They spends hours each day in love with their work devices and tools.

But which employees are enthusiastic and which are reluctant users of technology? After all, they aren't all in one job function or business group. The list of questions goes on:

  • How can you be sure your software licenses aren't money wasted?

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