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Assessment of USAFs Hiring Potential of Civilian Scientists and Engineers of the Millennial Generation

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Technical Report

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Air War College, Air University Maxwell Air Force Base United States

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The Millennial Generation individuals born 1981-2000 is entering the workforce in large numbers and brings with them different views across a wide variety of areas. To be competitive in the hiring and retaining of talented, young individuals, particularly in the competitive fields of science and engineering, it is imperative to understand these differences. The United States Air Force USAF has acknowledged the critical nature of this issue and created initiatives to reduce hiring timelines and increase opportunities for continued development. However, several areas need addressed to ensure the USAF is able to compete with the private sector. Reviewing the overall characteristics of Millennials and what they view as important in their work and social lives revealed policy approaches that could ensure the USAF maximizes it ability to recruit and retain Millennials in the competitive fields of science and engineering. Additionally, these approaches could reduce as well as reducing conflict in the workplace among the different generations. These policy approaches are 1. Allow flexible hours of work and of alternate duty locations, 2. Change reward and feedback expectations, 3. Delineate clear path forward for leadership rotational assignments, 4. Clear the way for more use of technology, and 5. Increase awareness of reputation of work. Incorporating these changes and continuing with the initiatives already underway to reduce hiring timelines and increasing opportunities for professional development will improve the ability of the USAF to recruit and retain scientist and engineers of the Millennial generation.

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