Is your meal service digitally prepared for the millennials workforce?

Millennials aged care catering

A weekend visit to the Digital Futures Lab at the State Library of Queensland reminded me that in 3 years time – 202050% of the global workforce will be millennials. This will rise to 75% by 2025.

Technology dominates every aspect of millennials lives. They will want EaaA (Everything as an App) and to have their smartphone at hand every minute of their working day as they expect instant access to information. They use their own technology to enhance that provided at work, to make their job more effective. Do your staff have better personal digital tools than you offer at work?

They will be drawn to organisations that offer an engaging, comfortable, and stimulating atmosphere that creatively blends work and life. They want to feel valued and that their work is worthwhile. Because they are used to instant, they want fast moving companies otherwise they will get bored. This matters, so millennial churn will be inevitable. Build this into your workforce planning.

Provide a place that they WANT to work in as it is good for retention – and good for business because engaged employees are more productive. An expected top benefit of the workplace is one where staff spend a high proportion of their time gaining new experiences and absorbing new information. Personal learning is important to millennials. While competitive compensation is important, they are motivated by much more than money. Reward for results, rather than number of hours worked.

Alternative skillsets such as EQ (emotional quotient) will become increasingly important. Simon Sinek recently talked about how they are used to “filtering” their lives and presenting only their best “self” at the expense of reality. When they enter the workforce, they’re dealt a sharp shock when they realise they cant put a filter on their career.

How might this look in the kitchen?

Staff will check their roster electronically and sign up for shifts online. They will digitally sign on and off each shift. Duties, location, movement, reporting to meet compliance will be digital and automated wherever possible, via sensors, wearables, RFID, auto trackers, auto logging.

Rosters will work to schedules that reflect best practice, efficiency, just-in-time and skill sets. It will ensure the right person doing the right task in the right place at the right time for the right duration.

Manual changes to resident preferences will be by exception, with residents given tools to update their preferences themselves or with help from others. AI (artificial intelligence) will intuitively understand resident profiles and preferences and develop their personalised profile. Food and hydration NQ (nutritional quotient) is measured on a continual basis and alerts are automatically sent when the NQ falls outside individualised parameters.

Ordering of supplies and deliveries will be automated, tapping into AI and BI (business intelligence) from menus, pantry inventory, par levels, production schedules and waste measurement. Equipment gives staff real time feedback and alerts.

Schedules are agile as they reflect changing resident wants and needs in real time. Staff receive alerts as their priorities are updated. Tasks are reallocated to the most appropriate person at the time. 

Staff are deeply involved in developing digital solutions and work collaboratively with functional stakeholders within and outside the organisation.

Management receives dynamic reporting of time, movement, cost, risk, productivity, waste, constraints, performance, resident touchpoints.

The future is now. How digitally prepared is your workplace to meet your millennial workforce? 

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