The 2020 Deloitte Millennial Survey 

Press release

Indian millennials and Gen Zs show resilience and optimism during the COVID-19 pandemic

Millennial Survey 2020 highlights (please refer to the annexure for a definition of millennials and Gen Zs)

  • Both millennials and GenZ are looking forward to sustained opportunities to work from home.

  • The urge to make a positive impact on the environment and society came across clearly.

  • Indian respondents are pleased with employers prioritising people over profits. This reflects in increased employer loyalty numbers.

  • A high proportion of Indian respondents are confident about policymakers’ speed of response and steps to safeguard workers during the crisis.

Mumbai – 25 June 2020 — The Deloitte Global Millennial Survey, now in its ninth year, reveals millennials and Gen Z to be resilient in the face of adversity, determined to drive positive change in their communities and around the world.

This year’s survey consisted of two parts: a “primary” survey of 18,426 millennials and Gen Zs across 43 countries conducted between November 2019 and early January 2020, and a “pulse” survey of 9,100 individuals over 13 countries taken between April and May of 2020 in the midst of the worldwide pandemic. Indian respondents were a part of both surveys. Many questions from the first study were repeated to gauge the effect of the pandemic on opinions.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has radically shifted our way of life—how we work, socialise, shop, and more—and young generations were especially impacted,” says Michele Parmelee, Deloitte Global Chief People and Purpose Officer. “However, despite uncertain and discouraging conditions, millennials and Gen Zs express impressive resiliency and a resolve to improve the world. As we rebuild our economies and society, young people will be critical in shaping the world that emerges.”

One of the stand-out findings was that the survey recorded a drop of more than 20 percentage points vis-à-vis the previous one, of millennials and Gen Zs who wanted to leave the organisation within two years. There was also a rise in those who wanted to stay beyond five years. Actions taken by employers to support employees, especially the focus on people before profits during the pandemic, has contributed to these high scores.

“For businesses, the increased confidence that millennials and Gen Zs have shown towards them should serve as a catalyst for further measures to help people grow and thrive. It’s clear that purpose-driven organisations will have an upper hand in the post-COVID world,” said S.V. Nathan, Chief Talent Officer, Deloitte India.

Stress and mental wellness—often amplified by work and financial concerns—remain critical issues

In the primary survey, 54% of Gen Zs and 57% of millennials in India said they were stressed all or most of the time. Respondents cited family welfare, long-term finances, and job prospects as primary sources of stress.

Despite the slight declines seen in the pulse survey, stress and mental wellness remain critical issues for young generations and these issues are manifested in work settings. Approximately 69% of millennials and 67% Gen Zs took time off work due to stress before the pandemic, though some of them told their employers it was for a different reason. Encouragingly, flexible working arrangements—which were widely implemented as a result of the pandemic—may present one solution. 86% of millennials and 83% of Gen Zs agreed having the option to work from home in the future would relieve stress.

“While organisations focus on upskilling and reskilling, there is a need to encourage a culture in which it’s okay to ask for help, to care for each other, and to address emotional distress in an environment free of judgement and misconceptions,” said Nathan. “Millennials and Gen Zs have been delivering results over the past few months in spite of a way of working that’s new to most. So it’s only justified that organisations should do their part to alleviate people’s stress levels,” he added.

The report also highlights how the consequences of the pandemic have drastically affected the careers of young workers. Compared to the countries included in the pulse survey, a higher than average proportion of Indian respondents reported reduction in their income/bonus, withdrawal or deferment of job offers or promotions, working longer hours, being placed on unpaid leave, or losing a source of income altogether. The persistent positive outlook towards employers presents an interesting juxtaposition to these numbers.

Determination to improve the world—and expecting others to follow suit

Younger generations take the issue of social purpose as a personal calling. In the pulse survey, respondents indicated they were taking “socially conscious” actions to benefit the planet and society. The COVID-19 crisis may have reinforced these inclinations, as nearly three-fourths globally said the pandemic has made them more sympathetic to the needs of others, and that they will take action to positively impact their communities. 89% of millennials and 84% of Gen Zs in India said that they will continue changing their personal behaviours to limit their own impact on the environment.

Millennials and Gen Zs’ focus on doing good is reflected in their purchasing habits as well. About 60% across surveyed geographies said they plan to buy more products and services from large businesses that have taken care of their workforces and positively impacted society during the pandemic. Around three-quarters will make an extra effort to buy products and services from smaller, local businesses.

View of businesses and policymakers positive in India

In both the primary and pulse surveys, millennials and Gen Zs in India were much more positive about the impact of business in society than the global average. The numbers did go down in India between the primary and pulse survey, which is consistent with the pulse survey trend. However, 90% of millennials and 81% of Gen Zs think business has a positive impact on society. Moreover, three out of four were pleased that businesses prioritised people over profits and showed genuine commitment to society, which is significantly higher than the pulse average.

While the COVID-19 crisis has been unprecented, 85% millennials and 74% Gen Z agreed that policymakers had taken the appropriate actions to support workers during the pandemic. Even more resounding was the confidence in the speed of response to the crisis.


Click to access: The 2020 Deloitte Millennial Survey 

Media contact:
Rohan Sharma
Deloitte India
+91 9819874948

Editorial Note: The data and opinions in this press release include the collective insights of both generations and, in some cases, are independent of each other and have been cited accordingly.

Methodology: The 2020 report is based on two sets of surveys. The first began prior to the COVID-19 outbreak using an online, self-complete-style interview; fieldwork was completed between 21 November 2019 and 8 January 2020. A second survey was conducted in similar fashion between 28 April 2020 and 17 May 2020, in the midst of the worldwide pandemic.

The initial survey solicited the views of 13,715 millennials across 43 countries and 4,711 Generation Z respondents from 20 countries. The subsequent survey questioned 5,501 millennials and 3,601 Gen Zs in 13 large markets that were affected by the pandemic to different degrees. No respondents in the former survey were queried in the latter.

Millennials included in the study were born between January 1983 and December 1994. Generation Z respondents were born between January 1995 and December 2003.

The report represents a broad range of respondents, from those with executive positions in large organizations to others who are participating in the gig economy, doing unpaid work or are unemployed. Additionally, the Gen Z group includes students who have completed or are pursuing degrees, those who have completed or plan to complete vocational studies, and others who are in secondary school and may or may not pursue higher education.

This press release has been issued by Deloitte Shared Services India LLP.

Deloitte refers to one or more of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited, a UK private company limited by guarantee (“DTTL”), its network of member firms, and their related entities. DTTL and each of its member firms are legally separate and independent entities. DTTL (also referred to as “Deloitte Global”) does not provide services to clients. Please see for a more detailed description of DTTL and its member firms.

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