Practical Strategies for Recruiting (and Retaining) Millennials & Generation Z

Recruiting Millennials and GenerationZ

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Why are we talking today?

Because you want to reliably recruit, hire, and retain Millenial (a.k.a. Generation Y) and Generation Z workers, and we want you to know that you can trust us to show you the way.

Why is this so important?

According to a recent piece by Snagajob, “By 2025, Millenials will make up 75% of the total U.S. workforce.” We already know that companies are struggling to find, and retain, Gen Y (those born between 1978 and 1989) and Gen Z (those born between 1990 and 1999) employees (age ranges identified by Robert Half).

Why is that?

Because your strategies for recruiting, and yes, your retention, has to change. These employees have different needs when it comes to recruiting, how they search for jobs, and what they expect from you.

What does this mean?

This means that you need to adapt to meet the needs of a younger workforce. But fear not, you can, successfully, and we can help. We’re passionate about recruiting, and as your partner, we’re here to support you. All we ask, is that you become a recruiting BEAST.

And what is that?

It’s a focus on:

Being Social (social media that is)

Over 80 percent of Millennials use LinkedIn for their job search, which is a jump of 700 percent from just a few years ago, according to Forbes. During interviews, encourage candidates to connect with you on LinkedIn and add your LinkedIn account on your email signature. Not only will you grow your Millennial online network, but they will share your job openings with their peers.

But using social is more than utilizing LinkedIn... 

About two-thirds of 2015 grads used a mobile app to search for a job. According to that same article by Snagajob, however, while “90% of Millennials search for jobs on a phone… only around half of job applications are mobile friendly.”

You need to address this.

But even as you do, you cannot forget, that as LinkedIn reports, the average member of Gen Z has an attention span of only 8 seconds, as compared to a whole 12 seconds for Gen Y.

Think about that for a moment, 8 seconds, and now focus on keeping your job descriptions brief, and visual, utilizing videos, animation, and emojis, when and where, possible.

Environment

But also, be social...

Almost 60 percent of new graduates report they would trade a higher salary for a more social, fun atmosphere, according to a recent Accenture study. Highlight employee sport teams, volunteer days and small teams when speaking with Gen Y and Gen Z candidates.

Advancement

As per a recent employee survey by PayScale, Generation Y candidates value career growth, training and advancement opportunities more than older generations. Around 72 percent of Gen Y candidates and 62 percent of Gen X candidates said the opportunity for career advancement was important, compared with only 48 percent of baby boomers.

Generation Z wants to be developed into leaders rather than serve as a cog in a machine.

What this calls for, is showing potential recruits the path available to them for reaching the next level. But once you do... you also have to buy into career development as a viable strategy for recruiting/retention, and you have to put your money where your mouth is.

For example, investing in an “in-house mentorship program.”

(thinking) Small

According to that recent Accenture study, only 15 percent of new graduates want to work for a large company, Even if you are a larger company, emphasize incentives that resemble a start-up culture: flexible schedule, a collaborative environment and non-traditional on-site perks such as game rooms, massages or yoga classes.

Again though, you cannot pay lip service to these incentives, you need to invest in them, market them, and ensure they are implemented.

Also, while thinking small, let’s spend an additional beat on crafting collaborative environments. Your challenge is not only creating these opportunities, but establishing your culture to work in teams throughout your company.


One way to do so? Highlight the importance of teams to your success on your social media channels.

Tradition 

Even as you make the adaptations discussed throughout this post, it’s important to note, that according to the PayScale survey discussed earlier, Gen Y still values work/life balance, friendly co-workers and benefits as much as previous generations. Hence, while younger candidates may approach their careers with a slightly different perspective, it is a mistake to assume traditional perks do not matter.

So, what did we learn? Or, what does it mean to be a recruiting BEAST?

Be Social, you must pay attention to social media, which must include a focus on mobile, and you must be brief when you do so. But also…

Pay attention to Environment, and being well, social.

Clearly define Advancement for those you’re recruiting and the pathway to career development.

And think Small, such as collaborative teams... just don’t forget about Tradition. Traditional benefits that is.

In a nutshell, it’s not just about compensation for young American workers. Gen Y and Gen Z candidates are attracted to a career path, work/life balance, and a positive work environment.

Which means, you have to highlight those perks in job descriptions, but you need to do so briefly, while meeting Gen Y and Gen Z where they’re at... which is online, and on the most current platforms, though most importantly, on their phone.

You also have to be passionate about your company, flexible, and willing to adapt, and if you’re willing to tackle all of these challenges, you will connect with the candidates in no time.

Be passionate, be flexible, be online, and become a recruiting BEAST:

Focus on being Social, pay attention to social media, which must include mobile (and brief), but also…
 

Environment and being well, social.

Define Advancement for those you’re recruiting and the pathway to career opportunity.

And think Small, such as collaborative teams, but don’t forget… think Tradition too, traditional benefits that is.

 

Want more advice on how to recruit millennials and generation Z talent. We're here to help.

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