As the percentage of millennials entering the workforce increases, employers must make sure their talent recruiting strategies are “Keeping up the Kardashians.” Millennials, a term typically referring to those born 1981-2000, are characterized as high achieving, tech savvy, and team-oriented. They are also considered tolerant, civic-minded, and family centric. These are only a few traits used to characterize the generation, but they are important ones to be mindful of as employers market job opportunities to this growing subset of the workforce.
First, it is important to identify what millennials value in a job and/or an employer. Studies show an organization’s reputation, work environment, and ability to provide opportunities for personal growth and development rank amongst the most influential factors in attracting millennials.
So how does this translate to the recruitment process? Employers must paint a picture of what it is like to work at the organization. Showcase opportunities for professional development or working in multi-generational teams that could produce mentor-mentee relationships. Address the new skills sets the candidate will develop. Appeal to her appreciation for diversity and civic-mindedness and discuss any diversity hiring initiatives or community involvement. Highlight unique cultural points—no, organizations don’t have to have a ping pong table or monthly BBQ’s to demonstrate value, but they should communicate some traits or traditions that exemplify what a “day in the life” looks like. In the same vein, acknowledge the work-life balance the organization fosters. Remember millennials are family oriented and do not always have the same itch to climb the corporate ladder as previous generations, so be sure to address the organization’s standard.
Millennials use of social media transcends into their job search. Consider using the organization’s Facebook page or Twitter feed to advertise positions. Ever heard of Periscope or Meercat? Give candidates a glimpse into a “day in the life” using these video streaming social media. To build upon a social media recruitment strategy, search local Facebook groups that focus on employment and advertise the opportunity to those followers. Or try engaging UF and Santa Fe student organizations via social media. Start a conversation by sharing the opportunity on their pages or tweet at their Twitter handles.
LinkedIn, the mother of all social networking tools, is also relevant to millennials. It is a platform for advertising positions and is also a way to proactively identify candidates that fit the profile. Recruiters are relying heavily on LinkedIn to source for candidates with particular skill sets…all it take is a few key word searches and filters. This strategy can be especially effective when recruiting millennials who are already in the workforce and bring a few years of experience. As employers embark on their social media recruiting journeys, recruiters should be sure to keep personal and company profiles up to date and full of content.
Recruiting millennials boils down to customizing an employer’s value proposition according to their employment values. Strategies include painting an honest picture of the organization and sprinkling in some social media usage to maximize engagement. Now, if only there was an “I’m hiring” Emoji…
Gavatorta. “It’s a Millenial Thing.” Association for Talent Development. 1 Mar. 2012.
“Millennials at Work: Reshaping the Workplace.” PwC:
“Student Use and Perceived Effectiveness of Social Networks.” National Association of Colleges and
Employers. 10 Dec. 2014. http://www.naceweb.org/s12102014/job-search-using-social-networks.aspx
“The Job/Employer Preferences of the Class of 2014.” National Association of Colleges and Employers.
Natalie Morrison serves as the Assistant Director for Employer Development at the UF Career Resource Center where she manages local employer relations and a program area elevating entrepreneurship as a career option. She also serves as the Director of Workforce Readiness for the Society of Human Resource Managers North Central Florida chapter and is a member of the Junior League of Gainesville. Natalie received her Master’s in Business Management from UF and her Bachelor’s in Art History from FSU