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Employer brand

Making your Business Attractive to Ambitious Millennials Set for Leadership

Clare Hopping

Richard foster/flickr Richard foster/flickr

A common complaint about the Millennial generation is that they believe they are entitled to leadership positions in the workplace before they have really worked for them – but this is not quite the case.

As the Baby Boomer generation retires from the workforce and new classes of university graduates come of age, the importance of recruiting Millennials grows for companies in every industry.

This generational gap is particularly troubling to those considering the expected impact of the mass-retirement of Baby Boomers: the average, large company in the U.S. will lose 30% to 40% of its workforce to retirement over the next five to ten years, according to Job Dig.

Like every generation before it, the Millennial generation is different and somewhat confounding to people of older generations. Some of these differences have even become a source of concern. Due to the proliferation of technology in their lifetimes and their unprecedented access to information, Millennials are regarded by many as confident upstarts who expect to be rewarded without having done much.

Given this generational shift, and the fact that they are the most educated generation in history, as Pew Social Trends describes, Millennials are poised to take over the workplace, causing both excitement and anxiety.

Millennial Worries Are Largely Unfounded

The common refrain is that Millennials are selfish and narcissistic, believing that they are immediately entitled to what they want, having been raised in an “everyone gets a trophy” culture. In actuality, like the generational clashes of yesteryear, this concern is largely based upon a chasm between the ways Millennials and other generations work, think, and allocate personal value.

Although there are major differences between how Millennials approach and view their careers and how other generations do, one fact has remained constant: everyone wants to be successful at what they do.

The difference is that while members of other generations are more likely to put their nose to the grindstone and work independently and incessantly to accomplish their goals, Millennials will collaborate, multitask, and step outside of the office to accomplish theirs.

Millennial employees may immediately covet leadership positions within a company, but they do not expect to be handed them on a silver platter. What they do expect immediately, however, is that their ideal position provides room for advancement within the organisation, along with immediate feedback on their performance, some high-level training, and the opportunity for mentorship from someone within the organisation, according to Forbes.

While working to obtain a position in leadership, they place a large value on being led; 74% of Millennials surveyed in a Culture Amp study said that confidence in their leadership is a key driver in engagement with their job, according to Ryan Jenkins. By addressing these desires and utilising other techniques, savvy recruiters can have a leg-up on hiring the best talent of this generation.

How to Recruit Millennials

When recruiting Millennials, it is important to remember the things that separate this generation from others. Flexibility is a very important value to Millennials, as they are broadly concerned with a work-life balance, preferring not to spend all their time in an office if it can be avoided; 69% of Millennials believe that office attendance is unnecessary on a regular basis, according to a study undertaken by Cisco.

Having flexible office policies and trumpeting a “remote working” policy during the recruitment and interview process can be very attractive to Millennial candidates.

Even though earning a high salary is of paramount importance to Millennial candidates, making a “positive impact on the world” ranks high on their collective list of career goals, as 92% of Millennials believe businesses should be measured by more than just their profits, according to a study by Deloitte.

Recruiters of Millennials should be wary of this and work to build up their company’s brand as trying to “make the world a better place,” as well as a means to make a profit.

One of the most important keys to recruiting Millennials is to engage them using technology. Using social media to recruit and identify candidates is essential, as 75% of Millennials maintain a profile on one platform or another, according to a Cisco study.

Even more relevant to recruiting: according to an AV Network study, 87% of Millennials would choose to work for a video-enabled organisation over a company that has not invested in video. Recruiters should use video recruiting, like the services available from LaunchPad Recruits, as a tool not only to reach as many candidates as possible, but to appeal to the candidates with the recruiting process itself.

The Times Are Changing

As time goes by, more and more Millennials will enter the workforce, and the tricks to recruit them will become more than just catering to the youth demographic; it will be the expected protocol in identifying and hiring the best candidates. These candidates will expect to have a chance to be leaders in their organisations.

By utilising knowledge of the generation’s preferences and using services like LaunchPad Recruits now, the savvy HR recruiter and his or her organisation can become what every Millennial yearns to be: a trendsetter.

Clare Hopping

Clare Hopping has been involved in the recruitment of both full-time employees and freelance staff for ten years. She specialises in recruiting staff via social media and digital platforms.