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How Millennials and Gen Z are Reshaping the Future of Work: The Future Workforce Report

The future of workforce report

Millennials and Gen Z are the future, so it’s no wonder that they’re shaping how work gets done. By 2028, these generations will make up 58 percent of the workforce. And they’re thinking ahead: Millennials and Gen Z managers are three times more likely than prior generations to prioritize future workforce planning.

The third annual Future Workforce Report from Upwork explored these generational impacts on the workforce—and more.

“We know already that the most in-demand professionals place high value on flexibility,” said Stephane Kasriel, CEO of Upwork. “For example, the youngest generations are most likely to freelance. And professionals craving flexibility will increasingly have managers who not only understand this priority but will themselves expect it.”

Millennial and Gen Z managers are reshaping the workforce in a multitude of ways. The Future Workforce Report also found they

  • Support remote work: 69 percent of Millennial and Gen Z managers have team members that are allowed to work remotely.
  • Recognize the need for reskilling: They’re nearly three times more likely to say that individuals should be responsible for their own reskilling as compared to Baby Boomers.
  • Embrace an agile future: Millennials and Gen Z managers are nearly two times more likely than Baby Boomers to have made significant progress in developing a flexible talent strategy as well as in investing in technology to support a remote workforce.
  • Utilize freelancers for strategic projects: They are more than twice as likely as Baby Boomers to engage freelancers for ongoing, strategic partnerships across multiple projects vs. one-time, one-off projects.

“With the various opportunities this generation has at their fingertips—freelancing, remote work, entrepreneurship—companies can no longer assume this generation will settle for the status quo,” said Matthew Mottola, Future of Work and On-Demand Talent Program Manager at Microsoft. “The good news for companies is that if they embrace this agility and flexibility they can drive innovation and change with their organization.”


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For a more detailed look at results, check out the press release or view the results deck here.

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