Hiring Generation Y: 4 things you need to know

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Generation Y. Gen Y. Millennials. Referring to anyone born between the early 1980s and the early 2000s, this generation is becoming increasingly important to recruit.

As baby boomers age and retire, businesses need to hire younger staff. It’s estimated that by 2025, Millennials will actually make up 75% of the global workforce (source: The Deloitte Millennial Survey).

What does Gen Y want in the workplace?

Different generations look for different things, and when it comes to employment this generation has a different value set to the ones before them.

Largely passion-driven, Generation Y tends to see work not just as the key to a regular pay slip (although money is still important), but also as a chance to gain real fulfilment and make a difference.

Here, I’ll look at four things your business can do to be more Gen-Y-friendly. Not all these issues may be viable or relevant for your own organisation, but it helps to know what this emerging new talent finds important in the workplace.

1: They’re digital natives

Millennials have spent the majority - if not all their lives - using the internet and mobile technology.

To really appeal, your company needs to be seen where they’re looking: online. This means making sure your online presence is as good as it can be.

You need an up-to-date website that’s mobile responsive (designed to be viewed and used on mobiles or tablets) and a social media presence that’s consistent, authentic and engaging.

This digital-savvy generation will investigate and evaluate you online before accepting a job offer, so it helps if your online presence reflects your company culture.

2: Flexibility is the ideal

Work/life balance is critical for this generation when deciding which job to take. Previous generations may have been happy working 9-5 in an office, but, if possible, millennials want to embrace cloud-based technologies to do some jobs from home - or wherever they choose - at a time that suits them.

At the very least, they want the chance of flexible hours - or negotiations around them. Rather than a pay rise, they may want to take a half day off every Friday, for example.

3: It’s not always just about the money

A survey of over 2,000 UK workers showed that 44% valued meaningful work that helped others over a high salary. Plus, 36% thought they’d work harder if their company made a positive contribution to society.

Millennials want to buy into what their employer stands for, so you must have clear goals of where your business is heading and the sort of people that work within your company. It’s important to them that their values and ideals will be matched by a potential employer, and having a strong company culture is vital.

4: They want to grow professionally and personally

Although Generation Y may not define success as working at one company for their whole career, they still want to grow and develop their skills - personally as well as professionally.

If there is no clear way to do this with you then they’re likely to look elsewhere. Offering in-house training and mentoring programmes plus clear paths of progression will make your company more attractive.

More information

Get in touch with one of our expert local consultants to find out more about recruiting Millennials.

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