They are the buzz generation and throughout 2006 the young adults that fall into the Gen Y category have earned themselves a bad wrap as lazy, free agents that refuse to grow up.
In terms of recruitment and workplace issues, those born between 1980 and 1994 are touted as the hardest staff to retain and the most difficult to mould.
A recent Australian Bureau of Statistics report highlighting the issue of labour mobility in Australia showed that of 9.9 million people surveyed those in younger age groups changed their employer more frequently than older workers. Of those surveyed aged between 20 - 24 years of age who were employed in February 2006, 22 per cent had changed their place of work within the last 12 months.
Peter Fullbrook, Managing Director of performance improvement consultancy Prosell, says these statistics do not take into consideration the factors that can drive a Gen Y employee to seek a new employer.
These can include but are not limited to a lack of constructive guidance from management figures, no room for creativity or scope to express ideas, restrictions on flexibility and not providing a vision for progression within the company.
He firmly believes managers need to step away from the stereotype that surrounds Gen Y employees to see their real potential in an organisation and take the necessary steps to learn how best to manage their Gen Y workers to ensure they reach their potential.
Fullbrook believes that the types of roles in which Gen Y employees will shine are those with a sales focus.
"Despite the media round up, Gen Y workers are perhaps the best asset for a company," he said. "A sales driven role, for example, essentially provides Gen Y with day to day activities that ensure they retain their interest in the role," he said.
"Gen Y employees thrive on being allowed to be creative and not be restricted to the traditional confines of work," Fullbrook explains.
"Sales roles in particular, allow in some instances, the chance to travel and dont necessarily tie the employee to their desk and this adds variety to keep Gen Y employees active and enthused," he said.
Whilst Fullbrook understands the drawbacks of having a workforce largely made up of employees who live in a world of instant gratification he believes with the right mindset from managers Generation Y are worth the effort.
"Generation Y employees are beneficial to a company," he said. "They are walking technology experts and are comfortable moving forward with these developments; they are innovative and entrepreneurial and thrive on challenging the status quo to improve services and company effectiveness."