Research Study: Millenials Ask for More Assistance with IT Support

Millennials ask for more assistance than baby boomers when it comes to resolving IT problems at work.

Despite the widespread belief that IT issues are only associated with older, c-suite members of the workforce, research today reveals that two thirds (66 percent) of IT decision makers claim that Generation X or millennials ask for the most assistance when presenting.

The global research, commissioned by Barco ClickShare, and conducted by Vanson Bourne of 1,250 IT decision makers, shows that the reason for the heightened need for IT support is due to a lack of digital skills across businesses. Almost six in 10 (58 percent) IT respondents report that employees ask for assistance because they are not digitally savvy enough to resolve IT problems themselves.

Most common IT problems

The study identifies that employees ask for the most assistance with presentation technology problems (67 percent). This is closely followed by internet connection issues (59 percent), printer issues (55 percent), mobile device problems (47 percent) and software bugs/problems (41 percent). 

Inma Martinez, technology pioneer and data scientist said:  “Millennials, Centennials and some Generation X employees excel at being digitally social, yet they are 100 percent mobile driven, lacking the necessary skills for interoperability, that is, to understand how desktop computers connect to other devices or, furthermore, how network infrastructure really works. This explains why they represent the largest employee group requiring I.T. support around presentation technologies in the workplace.”

“The very nature of Millennials and Centennials is short-term oriented, spoiled by the instant gratification of e-commerce, the widespread availability of WiFi and the seamless user experience that mobile apps present today. Generation X, because they weren’t born digital, feel even more alienated. Outside of this digital environment, when confronted by desktop interoperability issues – connecting to other machines, or understanding basic network infrastructure, they experience “digital frustration”. They are not only at odds, but require stronger support from I.T. teams beyond what other generations need in the workplace because patience is not their forte.”

As a way of overcoming presentation IT issues with such younger employees, six in 10 (60 percent) IT decision makers believe that the deployment of technology that is quick and easy to set up is essential. In addition, over five in 10 believe that devices that are wireless (54 percent), and compatible with any device (51 percent), will ensure presentations run smoothly.

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The majority (91 percent) of IT decision makers see presentation technology problems as a high or moderate priority. These issues are mostly commonly reported due to external business hardware e.g. laptops, tablets, and mobile phones (46 percent) being brought into meeting rooms, and problems experienced with meeting room business hardware such as screens, computers, and phones (40 percent) according to those whose IT department get asked for assistance. 

Lieven Bertier, head of product management, ClickShare said: “Issues around technology remains a major hurdle for businesses to overcome.”

The research shows that presentation issues are the most common of all technology problems for businesses, which take up a lot of employee’s time and can have a large impact on the reputation of the company and workforce productivity. “Business leaders and IT decision makers can address presentation problems with the deployment of easy to use wireless technology, removing the need for training and minimising disruption caused in meetings.”

Having ineffective presentation technology, that Generation X and millennials struggle with, can have a detrimental impact on businesses, with 5 in 10 respondents reporting that these issues were associated to a loss of business (54 percent) and damage to business reputation (53 percent). In addition, over two-thirds claim that presentation technology issues caused important meetings to be postponed (72 percent), and create disputes between colleagues (73 percent).

About the study: 1,250 IT decision makers from across the US (500) UK, France and Germany (250 per country) who work across IT & telecoms, retail, financial services, business and professional services, transport and travel, private education, utilities, media leisure and entertainment, manufacturing and production and private healthcare, were interviewed in March 2017 by independent research agency Vanson Bourne. A good spread of interviews were obtained across age ranges, gender and organization size.