May 2019 - Attracting Gen Z Will Be Like Recruiting Millennials Only Different

Generation Z has only recently entered the workforce, creating a wave of interest in what makes them different from previous generations. Defined as individuals born after 1996 (or around then. There’s no official start to generational labeling), Generation Z is poised to disrupt the workforce with the sheer size of their numbers, their reliance on social media for just about everything, and their preference for entrepreneurial work experiences.

According to Manpower Group, by the year 2020, Gen Z will comprise 24% of the global workforce. As they continue to enter the job market, it’s important to understand the characteristics and preferences of Gen Z candidates. They value a sense of community and a diverse environment where they can connect in meaningful ways. With these characteristics in mind, here are five key actions you can take to attract Gen Z talent:

1. Appeal to their digital preferences

Members of Generation Z are digital natives who are used to continuous content delivery and consumption. The wealth of available information has led them to be very selective when it comes to who they will engage with online, and in what manner.

An Altitude study found that Generation Zers take only eight seconds to decide whether a piece of online content or a connection (or even a job opportunity) is worth their attention. Here are a couple tips for engaging Gen Z online:

  • Incorporating more visual imagery into your content (Gen Z views digital video six times more than they read traditional blogs)
  • Expanding employer branding on Gen Z’s favorite social media sites such as YouTube, Instagram, and Snapchat, recognizing that although they are always online doesn’t mean Gen Zers will interact with your brand

2. Highlight entrepreneurial experiences

Generation Z possesses a strong entrepreneurial spirit. They view traditional company employment differently than previous generations, due in part to the explosion of online side hustles and the gig economy. One 2014 study found that 64% of college students have plans to start their own business in the future. When it comes to employment, Gen Z is seeking employers who encourage trying out multiple roles or projects within one organization. They also believe in working harder by themselves, taking a much more independent and do-it-yourself approach compared to millennials.

3. Convey a strong sense of community

Gen Z individuals are often interested in the community aspect of organizational culture. They’re curious about the finer points of the work experience, such as office perks and where they’ll be eating lunch. A study of Generation Z in the workplace found that opportunities for social connection were a significant factor contributing to Gen Z satisfaction at work. According to the study’s authors, Gen Zers, “want to have places that provide an excuse for being there (e.g., coffee bar, meeting places to sign up for company events, steps for sitting and listening to presentations or lectures).”

4. Showcase the diversity of your organization

Gen Zers value work cultures that encourage and support diversity and inclusion. According to a Door of Clubs survey of 5,000 Gen Z respondents, the number one cause that Gen Z wants to see their employers support is equalityPerhaps your company has an active diversity and inclusion committee, or you’ve won awards for the strength of your diversity programs. Gen Z was born in the digital age and they view themselves as global citizens, seamlessly interacting with global peers.

5. Leverage the power of brand ambassadors

According to a study by the Center for Generational Kinetics, Generation Z job seekers will explore job opportunities by talking to family and peers first, before visiting a job board. Recruiting Generation Z will be more successful when you enlist current employees to act as brand ambassadors and tell their own career stories. You can shoot short videos in which employees share tidbits about their work experiences. The videos can then be posted on social media and published internally or on your career page.

Excerpt from the article By Osnat Shostak
TLNT, May 10, 2019


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