10/27/2017  //  By Tracy Kelly  //  TALENT acquisition

Have you thought about your recruitment strategy for Generation Z? Gen Z’ers, born between the mid-90s and 2010, are entering the workforce and employers need to be prepared to attract, recruit and retain this new wave of talent. According to research by Universum, 65 percent of Gen Z students are hopeful about their careers. But, what do they expect from their future employers? China Gorman, an advisor, speaker and executive in human capital management, shares six top insights every employer should know to prepare for Generation Z’s arrival in the workplace.

Encourage shared values

As Gen Z weighs your job offer, they will consider not only salary, but your company’s values. “These young people are driven by a strong sense of self and are attracted to organizations with clear values that are lived at all levels of the organization,” says Gorman.

Generation Z expects your company’s values to be more than just signs on the wall. Company values may help to set expectations, guide employee decisions and unify the team. Appeal to Gen Z by sharing core values on your career site. During the interview process, discuss how the values influence your work. Demonstrate that your workplace is an organization of people dedicated to a shared vision.

Cultivate an authentic employer brand

The importance of an authentic employer brand won’t fade as Generation Z enters the workforce. “Creating a strong employer brand that is activated into social media will engage Gen Z in positive conversations with employers,” says Gorman.

Employees research your company on social media, third-party review platforms and your career site, so create a consistent employer brand message across all mediums. Share these messages to engage with Gen Z on social media, through the platforms they use each day. Remember, to connect with Gen Z, your employees can be an important asset. Share employee stories, and demonstratie employee passion for the organization to cultivate a brand that entices this generation.

Develop strong leaders

A disloyal or dishonest manager may quickly send Gen Z looking for another role. “Supervisors and managers who are trustworthy and fair go a long way in engaging and retaining employees of all generations—but Gen Z will especially value these leadership attributes,” says Gorman.

Every employee wants a great manager, but for Gen Z, a true leader can make or break their decision to accept or stay in a job. Demonstrate your company’s commitment to leadership development by establishing a mentorship program to help employees not only advance their skills, but learn leadership essentials from a seasoned manager. Consider implementing 360-degree reviews so employees can provide feedback on managers. Use this feedback to cultivate strong leaders Generation Z will look forward to working for.

Recognize unique personalities

According to Universum, 37 percent of Gen Z is worried they won’t find a job that matches their personality. Gen Z employees don’t want to be another cog in the wheel. They want to work at organizations where their unique qualities are recognized. “Taking a personal interest in them—not just as skill sets or employees—will create a much stronger employer-employee bond,” says Gorman.

Build loyalty among members of Generation Z by creating opportunities to establish personal connections and bring employee passions into the office. Create committees serving causes employees are passionate about, such as volunteering or sustainability, and let employees lead these organizations. Host in-office events to provide employees who work on different teams an opportunity to get to know each other.

Give them purpose

Gen Z wants more than a 9-to-5 job; they seek meaningful careers. “Purpose and meaning are huge motivators for this generation. Providing and acknowledging the meaning of the work they are doing will bind them close to your organization,” says Gorman.

Deliver purposeful work by showing Gen Z employees how their position advances the organization or supports customers. Recognize their role in achieving a company goal or share client stories on how their work makes an impact. When possible, involve employees in decisions or call on them to share opinions before moving forward with a new initiative.

Prioritize work-life balance

While Gen Z is hopeful about joining the workforce, they don’t want a job to become their life. Members of this Generation may not stay with a company that frequently demands long work days. Gorman asserts work-life balance is one of the most important priorities for Gen Z. Attract this group by supporting work-life balance. Encourage employees to unplug while on vacation and, if possible, ask managers to limit after-work and weekend emails. Offer flexibility to empower employees to balance job and personal responsibilities, or create a work-from-home policy so employees can work remotely when needed.

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