How to Hire a Millennial

Alan Price

Alan PriceSenior Director at Peninsula

Friday, December 14, 2018

Recruiting top talent is a challenge for HR. And with the Millennial generation able to offer businesses a lot more than manpower, there’s no surprise that businesses are fighting to get their attention. But how exactly do you hire a Millennial?

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Millennials are generally seen as desirable to employers due to their age and propensity to develop and take on new information and technologies. Therefore, in today’s competitive job market, employers should consider how to make their organization the most attractive workplace for new Millennial recruits.

1. Advertise on multiple channels

Firstly, employers should evaluate how they advertise any vacancies and consider adapting their methods to maximize applications. Although millennials may still use more traditional channels when searching for jobs, employers should look to expand their approach by incorporating social media.

Online recruitment provider, Networx, reported that seven out of ten 18-34-year-olds report having found their previous job through social media. Using platforms such as Twitter and LinkedIn, which tend to be more popular with a younger generation, to advertise roles will increase the likelihood of these being seen by a more diverse audience.

2. Emphasize a positive working environment

According to a recent study by YouGov, a third of millennials believe work-life balance is the most influential factor when selecting a job. Therefore, employers that wish to appeal to younger workers should look at ways to ensure their staff are not spending excessive amounts of time at work and avoid presenteeism. They should also consider introducing flexible working opportunities such as flex-time or remote working wherever possible in order to make the organization a more attractive proposition. 

Over recent years there has been a gradual change to the typical office environment with many employers, largely influenced by tech-savvy start-ups, choosing to opt for a more modern and open plan approach. This is something that will be particularly appealing to millennials and introducing collective workspaces and break out zones will help organizations avoid appearing old-fashioned in the eyes of younger staff.  According to the Deloitte Millennial Survey 2017, millennials said that flexible working arrangements helped productivity and staff engagement, whilst also enhancing wellbeing, health, and satisfaction.

3. Showcase company culture

Millennials are also known to place significant emphasis on a company’s workplace culture and are more likely to be drawn to progressive forward-thinking organizations. Therefore, it would be wise for organizations to introduce new technology and alternative working practices wherever possible to stand out from the crowd. Employers should also place a significant emphasis on employee well-being, with a particular focus on work-related stress and mental health, as this has become a key issue in recent times.

4. Let them know about personal development opportunities

It is also important that millennials feel supported and fulfilled at work, therefore employers should ensure there are sufficient training and progression opportunities available to keep young staff motivated and less inclined to seek employment opportunities elsewhere.

5. And demonstrate your employer ethics

At the same time, employers should consider their corporate social responsibility, as according to a survey carried out by Cone Communication, 75% of millennials would take a pay cut to work for a responsible company and this would appeal to more socially minded younger workers and instill a sense of company pride.

Whilst more traditional employers may be reluctant to change their practices to appeal to millennials, these organizations face the unfortunate prospect of being left behind in the battle to recruit top talent. The more successful employers will be those that take a holistic approach to the situation, tailoring their existing practices to appeal to the younger generation who could ensure the success of the organization in the years to come.

Author: Alan Price is senior director for the multi-award winning employment law consultancy, Peninsula; managing director of Peninsula Ireland and Elected Director & Trustee for the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development – CIPD. Alan is a Chartered Fellow of the CIPD with over 15 years’ experience in employee relations. His wealth of expertise means he is often sought for advice by business leaders and to provide comment to the media including the Daily Telegraph, Sky News, Sunday Times, Financial Adviser by the FT, Lloyds and Santander and Guardian Newspaper.

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