What are Millennials Saying About PTO?

In _Home, Millennial Thoughts by Shaun Hall2 Comments

Typically, I write articles geared towards helping Millennials become the leaders they were meant to be. Now and then, I like to shed light on the Millennial mindset. I believe the apprehension millennials feel is often birthed from misinformation and cultural differences. I want to remind people that we are not a broken group, we’re just……….different.

I had the privilege to get my hands on a 2017 study conducted by TSheets.com. For those of you not familiar with TSheets, they developed an industry leading time tracking software aimed at small businesses. If you get a chance, check out their site. It’s very well done.

TSheets surveyed hundreds of employees on how they spent time. The study spanned all age groups and specifically targeted how employees valued their paid time off (PTO) and other time-based benefits.

The study revealed so much interesting information that I need to spread the data over a few posts. Nevertheless, the first result I would like to highlight is the findings of Millennial vs. Boomer, and how each generation views time off.


If you search millennials and time off, you will see the following result.

It’s comical how many varying opinions there are when it comes to what millennials want. Do we demand time off, or are we less likely to take it? Are we all about the money or will we refuse a pay raise in place of more vacation time? Well, it’s time to stop the guess work. The survey results answer many of these questions for us.

According to the data, Millennials are less likely to turn down a job due to a lack of PTO. More so than any other generation. In fact, 34% of employees ages 18 – 24 reported that they get no paid time off at all. Far surpassing the boomer generation who reported at 11%.

Overall, boomers seem to be the most likely to turn down a job because it doesn’t offer enough PTO. Out of age group 54+, 70% said they would turn down a job. This is above the average of 60% and much higher than the millennial numbers at 44%

This is not to say that millennials don’t value time off. It just seems that it’s in a different way. Where the Boomer generation prefers sick leave and personal days, Millennials are in favor of better maternity/paternity leave and flexible work hours.

88% of millennials said employers should provide maternity leave while 73% were also in favor of paternity leave. Boomers were much lower on this coming in at 64% and 49% respectively. As for flexible hours, 87% of millennials said employers should provide flexible work time.

What about pay? Do we prefer time over pay? According to the data, no. 60% of the age group 18 – 44 said they would rather get more money than more flexibility. This is just barely lower than the boomer numbers of 65%. More than the majority still value pay over time.

Wrap up

So what did we learn? The majority of Millennials value maternity/paternity leave more than other forms of time off. We value flexible hours and feel that pay is still more important than time off. However, so does everyone else. The reality is that the majority of every generation believes in these. It’s simply a matter of how much more of the majority.

These are all true statements: The majority of every generation feel they get enough time off, the majority of every generation believe employers should offer maternity/paternity leave, the majority of every generation think flexible work time is necessary, and the majority of every generation would take higher pay over PTO.

We sometimes get so wrapped up in the differences that we simply forget about how similar we are. This can manifest itself into finger pointing and alienate one another. When it comes down to it, the majority typically agrees with other majorities so the dissidence that gets created is nothing but wasted energy, and would be better served somewhere else. Together, we are going to do great things; we just need to keep finding ways to understand each other.

I hope you enjoyed the article and if you would like to add to the conversation, please leave your comments in the box below. Special thanks again to TSheets.com for providing me with their survey results. Content like this is worth its weight in gold and I look forward to publishing a few more time-related articles from the data over the coming weeks.


  1. Interesting. Our company did some studies on Millennials, we’ll have to sit down and discuss our results some time. Can’t be anytime soon… I’m leaving tomorrow for two weeks of PTO at the beach (non-millennial).

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