Forget Millennials – How Do You Recruit Generation Z?
Ok, maybe don’t completely forget Millennials, they are after all a fairly hefty chunk of the workforce, and certainly a bigger cohort nationally than Generation Z. But don’t let this smaller, new kid on the block fool you. They are the next big thing, and certain to rock the boat on the recruitment front. You need them.
Who Are Generation Z?
These are the kids coming of age now, born in the mid to late nineties. They are the school leavers and graduates of now.
As part of human nature, we often view the next generation as idle. We see news reports about dumbing-down qualifications, feel it wasn’t like that ‘in our day’, and can easily throw up our hands in despair for the future. However, we need to wave farewell to our stereotypes when it comes to Generation Z entering the world of employment as we couldn’t be more wrong.
Generation Z are entering the workplace with some seriously impressive skills when compared to previous generations. They are mightily independent, believing respect is earned not simply due, and leaving the rest of us quaking with their intense multi-tasking skills. They are more connected than Millennials, and don’t just embrace the changing world: they’re quietly getting on and leading the change.
A few things that have really shaped this generation are high university fees seeing them enter the workplace sooner, teen years wading through a recession and zero-hours contracts, and an entire life spent flicking between screens in a 24/7 world. They are aware of workplace competition, and they are largely motivated and driven to add value, and take a flexible approach, rather than simply ‘get a job’. They’ve come of age when - politically - the generations above haven’t looked out for their best interests, and are entering a Brexit-Trump world.
As An Employer – Why Do You Need Them?
The real question should be: why don’t you? We’re learning that the Millennials are shape-shifters and don’t have the same loyalty bug as previous generations. Millennials are now also heading up into the ranks of managerial positions and as such are looking for talent beneath them which speaks the same language.
There’s also the very real issue that Millennials are now reaching family-starting age and parental rights are now well and truly in their favour. Gaps, both short and long-term, male and female, are opening in the Millennial workforce ranks. The Millennials are facing more mental health problems than previous generations, meaning that they are pushing for better work-life balance. Generation Z are aware of this, and keen not to follow the same path.
All these reasons are largely a numbers game. Even more important is the value that Generation Z stands to bring to the party. As already stated, this generation are the ultimate multi-taskers. They live through connectivity, scan, assess, and move on to the next thing, leaving added value in their wake. This can be transformative in a workplace.
How Do You Recruit Generation Z?
Now comes the tricky bit. These guys aren’t just going to amble into your job just at your say so. They need certain incentives.
- Money, Money, Money: First up, let’s talk money. This generation watched their parents struggle through the recession. They are financially savvy and don’t suffer fools gladly. They’re the generation entering the workplace at the same time as the introduction of the national living wage. So, respect that. They’ll give value if you do too.
- Listen and Pay Attention: Generation Z not only expect their voice to count, they need it to. They will respect you, and add value, but you need to earn the respect: You don’t just get it by dint of your age. They need constructive feedback but expect to be listened to as well. Respect them.
- Invest in Them: This generation are quite happy to shape their own future and if you want that future to be with you, you need to nurture it. Invest in them, and they’ll invest in you. Mentorship schemes are big news here.
- Motivate Them: Businesses still need to carefully cut their cloth, so think laterally on how you can motivate this new generation. What are your working conditions? Flexible working? Leave entitlements? Added extras? This generation are facing housing prices 7.6 times their annual income, fears for the NHS, and tough times with pensions - give them a hand.
- Be Tech Savvy: Even if you’re not, let them be. This is their area to shine. They want to see tech fully integrated into their workplace. Investing in tech is investing in your talent too. You’ve got a ready-made band of trouble-shooters on hand, after all.
- Get Your Culture Sorted: What worked before, with a top-down approach, may no longer work. Instead, you need to bring your workplace culture into the modern age. This generation have seen the fun, friendly, innovative and driven workplaces of Google, Apple, Innocent and the likes, and they want a slice of that pie. Diversity needs to be your middle name.
- Corporate Social Responsibility: Whilst you’re at it, you need to sort out your corporate social responsibility. Gen Z isn't too impressed with the state of the world they are inheriting. They have a global conscience and it needs to be given due consideration. They don’t just talk the talk, they walk the walk.
Where to Find Generation Z?
In your palm of course! This generation are connected. They have CVs in the form of websites like Wix, they use LinkedIn intuitively, and they use fast-moving web recruitment tools such as QPLtalent to find you. What are you waiting for?