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Generation Touchscreen: How the right technology can help you attract and retain young talent.

Ana Perez

Can we guess your age by whether you clicked or tapped on this article? Probably. The line that separates Gen Z from previous generations becomes clear when it comes to their choice of technology – so much so, it has earned them the nickname of “Generation Touchscreen”. Is your company ready to welcome this new generation into the workforce?


What makes Gen Z tick?

Gen Z is often defined as the first generation of digital natives. They’ve grown up surrounded by technology that’s rapidly evolving and easily accessible. The “Generation Touchscreen” nickname is no joke – the average Gen Zer got their first smartphone for their 12th birthday. As early as 2014, 70% of UK schools were using touchscreen tablets, meaning this preference for touchscreens over traditional desktop setups has carried on through their lives. To attract this talent to your creative team you will need to take issues like portability and user-friendly features into account in your tech offering.

Gen Z is a very diverse generation that knows its worth and will not settle for jobs that make them unhappy. Having grown up during the Great Recession of the late 2000s, they are used to job insecurity and the increased mobility it brings. Gen Z is leading the Great Resignation, with up to 77% of those surveyed saying they are thinking about quitting their jobs. To improve employee retention rates with this younger generation, it is crucial to position yourself as a caring employer that values talent, for example by offering remote work and employee choice programmes – both supported by the latest technology.


The future is mobile

Being the first generation of smartphone natives, Gen Z spends a lot of time on their mobile devices, and will probably be using them to access your resources at work. You will need to ensure everything works seamlessly on mobile and adapt to make sure your content stands out on small screens, as well as implementing strong security settings to ensure this doesn’t cause issues down the line.

In fact, 78% of Gen Zers consider their mobile devices the most important way to go online (, meaning that providing their favourite mobile device should be the focus of any employee choice programmes and tech refreshes you have in the pipeline.


One brand reigns supreme

When it comes to their device preferences, there is no contest: It’s always Apple. iPhone is actually the favourite smartphone of 70% of Gen Zers. In fact, Apple is Gen Z’s favourite brand – we don’t just mean in tech, but their favourite overall brand, both at the UK level and globally.

It doesn’t just stop at iPhone, either – after all, when we discuss touchscreen devices, we couldn’t go without mentioning iPad. A favourite across schools and homes, iPad is another crucial tool you can benefit from. It can really supercharge your creative team in the workplace – and the new iPad brings you more powerful features than ever before. The new all-screen display is perfect for drawing directly with Apple Pencil or accessing the apps you need side by side. It’s ideal for working on the go as well, whether you’re part of a team that works remotely or just want to add more flexibility to your workflows.

Their reasons for preferring Apple devices vary, but many cite better multimedia capabilities, hardware quality and the presence of technologies like face recognition and 5G. Overall, Apple devices are known for their astonishing graphics, fast processing capabilities and their high resell value, making them a perfect choice for any creative team.

We cannot overstate how crucial offering Apple devices is to attract the attention of Gen Z talent. Their preference for Apple is so pervasive that most members of this generation would rather have an Apple Watch than a Rolex. This anecdote is representative of Gen Z’s disruptive power over the market – their relationship with technology means that big changes are coming, and you need to ensure your company is ready to make the most of it.


From the classroom to the workplace

Gen Z’s relationship with technology doesn’t end at home – it’s also strengthened during their education. Gone are the days where an IT class would consist of a handful of students taking turns to use an outdated desktop computer: the UK is at the forefront of embedding technology in the curriculum, with 64% of schools using technology in the classroom daily. This isn’t just a pandemic stat, either. As of 2022, 39% of schools continue to develop curriculum content for remote learning specifically.

The benefits of technology echo through the entire system. 96% of teachers say that tech has a positive impact on education, and a majority of them also report that it allows them to plan more varied and exciting lessons, that it keeps pupils more engaged and makes the classroom more vibrant and fun. Tech curriculums are very diverse too – for example, Adobe Express is currently being used by over 43 million pupils and teachers globally and is rated as a top creativity tool for education.

This instant access to the latest technology developments means that the workforce of tomorrow will have a very varied and developed skillset. The productivity ready to be unlocked by your business is staggering – but you will need the right tools.


How you can get there

Are you preparing your infrastructure to welcome Generation Touchscreen into your team? As we saw before, your choice of tech is key to attract and retain younger talent and it could be the difference between successful recruitment and a high staff turnover rate. How can you implement touchscreen technology in your creative team?

As we’ve discussed before, iPad is the most obvious way to do this. But did you know you can actually use iPad as a touchscreen controller for other Apple devices? The latest iMac range is a great option to try this out. With a 24” display, it’s powered by the M1 chip, which brings you the best performance yet on iMac – faster workflows, sharper graphics, and more efficiency. Its 4.5K Retina display with a P3 colour gamut and True Tone technology make it perfect for creatives that need accurate colour representation on their display, and its variety of ports and connection options make it perfect for any workstation. Apple devices are built for collaboration, after all, and their exclusive features allow your workflow to be seamless across the entire estate. For example, you can copy and paste content or transfer a call instantly across devices.

Another interesting option is to install touchscreen displays in your meeting rooms. These audiovisual tools allow you to work openly and offer an interactive whiteboard feeling that’s perfect to foster creative work and collaboration.

We recommend Eizo displays – some of their series like FlexScan and DuraVision have touchscreen capabilities, and their products are always highly precise and colour-accurate, offering your creatives a perfect canvas for audiovisual work.

Speaking of creative tools, you can create really engaging set-ups when you add touchscreen tools into the mix. For example, you can use the apps of the Adobe Creative Cloud suite on the Wacom Cintiq or any devices of the Microsoft Surface series. The touchscreen interactivity is perfect both to replicate the feel of pen on paper and to offer a more intuitive way to control the software. Adobe Creative Cloud is optimised to work on mobile – from Photoshop Express to Lightroom, allowing you to enhance your content directly from the palm of your hand. We recommend exploring Capture, which allows you to extract colour palettes, brushes, patterns and fonts directly from your phone camera, making it a perfect tool to work spontaneously and capture inspiration when it strikes.

If you think you might not be able to afford new devices, think again: we offer several options that will help make new tech more accessible for your team. We have a number of bundles designed specifically for creatives, so your team can get everything they need conveniently and at a discounted overall price. We also offer services that can lessen the cost of a tech refresh, from a device-as-a-service subscription that allows you to spread out payments in an opex-friendly model to a recycling service that will give you credit towards newer purchases.

When you deploy your new devices, you want to make sure everything is compatible and properly embedded into your existing infrastructure. This can be challenging, especially if your IT department focuses on Microsoft products and you’re adding Apple into the mix. Our design and consultancy services ensure that your infrastructure is assessed by Apple-qualified experts to ensure your deployment is as smooth as possible. We can also look into your management system and design a solution that works for your team’s needs.


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