Securing the top talent can be tricky, and employers are competing strongly against each other, as job vacancies in the UK exceed job seekers. In high demand are the younger generations, considered by many to be more confident and tech-savvy. In particular, Millennials and Gen Z candidates fit into this demographic and, together, form more than two-thirds of the available workforce.
Any company looking to target the best talent will need to understand what is important to Millennials and Gen Z candidates if they are to have an effective job advertising, employee search, and hiring process.
This article looks at who Millennials and Generation Z are, their values and employment desires, and how to attract and retain them.
What Are Gen Z Candidates?
Anyone born between 1981 to 1996 is considered part of the Millennial workforce (25-40-year-olds). Anyone born from 1997 onwards is part of the new generation, known as Generation Z or simply Gen Z (18-24-year-olds).
What Gen Z Talent Wants
The events of the past two years have reshaped the current and future workforce, affecting the attitudes and values of qualified talent, and changing the meaning of job flexibility:
Millennials And Gen Z Attitudes
In the 2022 Randstad Workmonitor survey, a new era in the #howwework revolution, there are concerning revelations for companies with open positions and existing Gen Z workers. Many Millennial and Gen Z employees ‘would not accept a job that doesn’t meet their expectations.’ Furthermore, they are also ‘willing to walk away from one if it interferes with how they want to lead their lives.’
Referenced as the ‘Great Resignation,’ in 2021, 40% of Millennial and Gen Z employees say they have quit a job because it didn’t fit within their personal lives. The same percentage said they would not accept a job offer from employers who were not invested in social causes and committed to improving their diversity and equity record.
Read Presenting A Job Offer.
Gen Z workers have suffered most from isolation as they were forced to work remotely, with one in four suffering from depression and anxiety. These employees have become acutely aware that happiness holds the key to success in work and life. The job security and financial security desired by previous generations and those in the latter stages of their career simply isn’t a factor for young people.
Those running their own businesses must recognise the importance of well being because the newest generation working in a gig economy ‘would rather be unemployed than unhappy.’
Gen Z Values
You may think that benefits and pay are the most critical factors when advertising jobs and attracting potential candidates. However, more than one-third of the next generation of workers say they would be happy to earn less if their job contributed something to society.
Gen Z and Millennials are looking to work for a company with values aligned with theirs. Candidates feel passionate about social justice, corporate responsibility, workplace diversity, inclusion, and climate change. Gen Z and Millennials are clearly seeking to work for a company that is focused on sustainability and tackling environmental issues.
While a fair salary will always be a vital part of the recruiting process, meaningful work and creating a positive impact on society will help you attract and retain Gen Z workers.
Having experienced flexible working options facilitated by information technology, Millennials and Generation Z have become digital natives adept at working remotely using mobile devices. The pandemic transformed the work environment, with many employers and employees experiencing remote working for the first time. Even though restrictions are largely lifted, it is unlikely that the old norms will fully return.
Almost two-thirds of available talent say they don’t prefer the traditional Monday to Friday 9-5 work schedule. Candidates seek a better work-life balance, adopting schedules such as a four-day workweek or hybrid work schedules with only a partial return to the office.
More than 40% of job seekers making a job search say they ‘would not accept a job that did not offer flexibility around working hours and where they work.’
Attracting Job Seekers And Your Company Culture
Introducing an effective recruitment process means focusing on your employer brand and candidate experience. College students, Millennials, and Generation Z are internet research and social media savvy, and embark on employer discovery before ever submitting job applications.
You will need to revisit your employer branding, career site, and job descriptions, bringing them to life by considering important factors from development opportunities to benefits and flexibility. To grab the attention of a healthy mix of talent, you should:
1. Ensure Your Job Description And Career Site Reflects The Attitude Of Gen Z And Millennials
Gen Z candidates seek a sense of purpose and meaning from their jobs. Ensure your career content has a job satisfaction focus by highlighting how the candidate will make an impact and contribution, how employees are recognised, and the career advancement and career growth opportunities, such as mentorship programs.
Recruitment tip: Grab your job description framework from our job description library and leverage flat fee recruitment to advertise across multiple job boards and social media platforms in just a few clicks.
2. Align Your Values
Review your mission, values, and company culture and ensure they align with those of your employees, candidates, and society. Take the time to evaluate whether your company has inclusive policies that promote an ethnically diverse workforce and how your company is working towards a greener economy. Ask your existing staff about their own experiences to discover their mindset and how your company performs on social and environmental issues.
3. Promote Job Flexibility
Candidates want to have a say in where and when they work, so it is crucial to assess the effectiveness of your workplace policies covering job-sharing opportunities, flexible schedules, and remote work arrangements. To create a better work-life balance you might, for example, introduce hybrid working where you schedule in-office meetings to nurture team building and collaboration. You can get the ball rolling when performing your interview scheduling by offering in-person or virtual job interviews.
Future Workforce FAQs
The Gen Z and Millennial workforce wants to work for companies that have values aligned with theirs. This means considering issues such as sustainability, equality, and employee wellbeing.
The future of work is most likely hybrid with staff working remotely and in the office. A four-day work week is also on the cards, with countries such as Scotland, Ireland, Spain, Belgium, and others already adopting this as the norm.
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