How to recruit the younger generation?

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Photo by Anna Shvets

Every generation has its own way of thinking and interacting with the world. Depending on their environment and education, they see the world of work from a different perspective. Baby boomers, Generation X and the Millennials are now well known because they have been working for quite some time. However, Generation Z (or Gen Z) is still a mystery for a lot of workers and recruiters due to their young age, let’s see who they are.

What is Generation Z?

Generation Z, also called Digital Natives, are people who were born between the mid-1990s and mid-2000s. They are the first people who have been using screens for their whole life. Most of them were born after the invention of the WIFI in 1997 and they all knew how to use the phone (and then a smartphone) before the age of 10. Of course, social media is a concept they quickly understood because they grew with them. Facebook, for example, appeared in 2004 and was already used by 600 million people in 2010.

Due to these technological advances, this generation is extremely connected. They have multiple devices, but their favourite device is the mobile that they carry literally everywhere. They developed strong multitasking skills by switching constantly from one device to another. Thanks to this, they are able to collect and cross-check information when they work.

What do they expect at work?

One part of Generation Z has already been on the work market for many years now, but they are still young and expect different things from their work environment than the older generation.

Firstly, this generation like security in their job. Because they were born during the recession time, they probably saw their parents struggling with finances and want to make sure they will not face the same problems. They focus more on saving money for the future than doing activities or going on holidays with it. Also, because they are multitasking experts, they tend to work more with more responsibilities.

For Generation Z, well-being at work is something even more important than their job itself. They like a nice environment to work in and like an open-space area to be able to communicate with their colleagues whenever they want and exchange thoughts and ideas. Personal development within the company is also highly appreciated in order to grow and learn new professional skills.

Work-life balance is also essential for Gen Z. With Millennials, they believe their productivity shouldn’t be measured by the number of hours they have been sitting in front of their desk but more by the goals they achieved. They are extremely flexible but prefer to work whenever and wherever they want. The 9 to 5, 5 working days a week seems to be a concept they are not in love with. Remote work, however, is way more appreciated and tends to grow.

Tips to recruit and keep Generation Z in your company

  • Catch them where they are, online: People from this generation are one with their phones and are connected over 10 hours a day. Therefore, working on an online marketing strategy is essential if you want to reach them. You can find candidates by posting a job offer on your social media with a nice and inspiring message to attract them. Also, make sure your social media and website reflect the atmosphere of your company.
  • Give them responsibilities and independence: It is very important for this generation to feel useful at work. Including them in big projects from the beginning will show the company’s consideration for their work and will allow them to feel fulfilled. Moreover, they grew up asking everything to Google, so they know how to deal with a subject they don’t master yet. Giving them space and the opportunity to express themselves will help them be more productive and focused.
  • Perks: Generation Z likes to learn and improve themselves so they would strongly appreciate a subscription to a course to learn a new language or new skills for example. Also, little things like a subscription to the gym, fresh fruits at the office or a Friday free lunch will definitely improve the well-being of your employees and make them want to stay.
  • Flexibility: Offering the possibility to work from home or somewhere else than the office during a period of time can attract many young people. It can be one day during the week or a few days a week. Some companies also opt for a full-time remote system where people can work from anywhere in the world.

Abroad Experience BV is an international recruitment agency which offers unique career opportunities to multilingual job seekers. See our vacancies.

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