These young people usually carry a stigma of being disloyal and hard to manage, but, perhaps if we worked a little harder to understand them, we’d find that Millennials have much more to offer than what we’d previously thought.
With that being said, it is an undeniable fact that more and more Millennials are looking for jobs, and that, as a business that values growth, you need to adapt to this new, young talent to continue growing. In light of that statement, here are a few tips that will help attract Millennials to work for you, and retain them for years to come.
1. Give Them Purpose
The first thing you need to understand as an employer looking to hire Millennial talent is that they value having a purpose above all else. These young people do not like to be viewed as cannon fodder or warm bodies filling positions; instead, they are goal-oriented and constantly looking to grow both as people and professionals.
With that being said, if you want to hire and keep this young talent, your business has to have a clear goal in mind, where is it going and what is it trying to achieve, as Millennials need to feel like they’re making a difference both in their workplace and in the world with their work, and the value that feeling even above monetary compensation.
2. Allow Them to Grow
Like we said, Millennials take great care to constantly improve their skills and grow. This makes them prime resources for companies that are interested in growth. Companies that offer their employees courses and lessons, and fosters self-improvement and vertical corporate movement are very likely to attract Gen Y (another name for Millennials) workers. This is one of the reasons Gen Yers are so prone to changing jobs; if a posting they’re currently occupying has no prospects for improvement and upward movement, Millennials are very likely to leave that posting and find a workplace that sees the importance of professional development as motivation for these driven individuals.
3. Keep Open Channels of Communication
Millennials are very independent people – they like taking ownership of projects and dislike being micromanaged and tampered with. However, what they dislike even more than being micromanaged is the absence of communication with their higher-ups and their peers.
Again, as we said, these young people like to have a clear goal in mind when working, and being able to communicate with their superiors and peers allows them to visualize that goal and the road to that goal. Businesses that don't communicate seem to them as lacking a clearly defined purpose and unwilling to consider suggestions from their employees on how to move forward, improve and make their mark on the community.
4. Define the Job
One of the things Millennials find incredibly egregious is the lack of direction in their work. When making a job posting businesses often fail to describe in detail what the position might entail, hoping to get a good response and then present the details in the interview.
However, this sort of job posting doesn’t fly too well with Gen Y. Having no clear goal and no clear career progression path leaves these young people feeling frustrated and uncertain, as they detest sitting in a cubicle 9 to 5 without knowing what they’re doing or why. The importance of having a written job description is, thus, very high if one is looking to hire Millennial talent, as they’re very likely to gloss over a job posting if it’s not well defined and you might end up missing quality employees that would have driven your company onward in the future.
5. Flexibility Is the Key
Besides uncertainty and lack of purpose, Gen Yers also dislike a lack of flexibility. Gen Yers are dynamic creatures, and they tend to turn away from employers who are too rigid in their leadership style, mostly because they consider such employers narrow-minded. Besides, Millennials also dislike conforming to a regular 9 to 5 schedule, which is why they are often attributed as being unable to hold down a job. This is not because they’re lazy or complacent, but because they are more productive if they do things in their own time, rather than completing their task early and then being forced to sit in the office for the rest of the day.
Basically, the issue of flexibility comes down to these two things – be open to suggestions and trust your Gen Y employees to organize themselves, and you can be sure they’ll reciprocate your trust with diligent work.
6. Perks Rather Than Money
One of the best ways to draw in young talent these days is to offer them various perks rather than just bumping up their salary. Sure, Millennials care about having a decent check at the end of the month like the generations before them, but they don’t put the same value on monetary compensation you’re used to.
Instead of money, try inciting Millennials with perks such as health and wellness programs in your office, better working hours or extended holidays. Allowing them to work from home is also a very popular perk among the young talent, as they feel like they’re the most productive in a familiar environment. Finally, this perk can be something small; get a pool table, a vending machine, rent an authentic Italian Lavazza office coffee machine and create a homey lounge in which your employees can unwind and relax, and they’ll happily accept your job offer, and come back to work reinvigorated and ready to tackle new tasks.
7. Don’t Get Cute
Millennials may be young and inexperienced, but they’re not fools, and they do not like being exploited based on that youth and inexperience. Companies that are looking for Millennials as a source of cheap labor often try to use industry buzzwords and try to "get cute" with them as a way of drawing them in. However, these young people are shrewd and often better judges of character than they're usually given credit, and they can smell a scam a mile away.
So, if you really are interested in hiring on a bunch of Gen Y talent, make sure your job posting is devoid of these meaningless buzzwords and, instead, speak to them openly and frankly, and they'll take you seriously.
8. Upgrade Your Arsenal
More so than any other generation so far, Generation Y is extremely tech-savvy. Most of them have experienced technological development and the birth of the internet from a very young age and have adopted these new technological changes very quickly, and integrated them into their lives. Nowadays, there is no Millennial that doesn't own a smartphone, and few are more than two clicks away from their social media profile.
With that being said, to hire Millennial talent, one must meet Millennial expectations of technology in the workplace. These young people are overjoyed at the opportunity to work with the latest gadgets that will make their life and their job easier and more efficient, and having to do things the old fashion way can quickly lead to exasperation and disinterest.
9. Let Your Brand Do the Talking
Like we said, Millennials are very likely to have an online presence, and they greatly appreciate if your brand has an online presence as well.
Having an online presence means that your potential future employees can check out your brand beforehand and figure out if they can see themselves as part of your company. This ensures that you’ll only get those Millennials that align with your goals, values, and aspirations as a brand and that these people are serious about working with you. Word of mouth marketing is also very powerful, and, if you've got a good reputation along with your online presence, you can be sure more good, young talent will hear about you from their peers and former employees.
10. Don’t Discard Potential
If you know anything about Millennials it's that they're always complaining about companies setting ridiculous requirements, such as years of experience in the field, to downright unrealistic things like requiring experience in brand new technology.
If you’re looking at young talent, chances are, they’re not going to have much experience. Most Millennials have just graduated, or have graduated not even half a decade ago. With that in mind, you shouldn’t be dismissive of their inexperience; instead, find those that have potential and initiate the corporate training of those Millennials yourself, and, before long, you'll not only have an exceptionally skilled employee but a loyal one as well.
11. Make Them Feel Irreplaceable
We’ve already mentioned this – Millennials do not like feeling like cannon fodder. We also said that employers are often complaining about Millennials being unfaithful. But, if you think about it, if you make your employees feel easily replaceable, they’re very likely to leave at the first opportunity and find an employer that will make them feel accepted and valued.
Following up on that statement, if you want to keep your Millennial employees, then you need to make sure they feel irreplaceable. Remember that these people are very confident in their abilities, and they know what they’re good at and that they can make money off of their work. However, what they need is to feel like they’re in line with their company’s goals and values, and that they’re an invaluable part of the team, and that their ideas and suggestions are taken seriously.
12. Provide Post-Interview Feedback
There is nothing more frustrating for a young person looking for a job than sending out a bunch of CVs and getting not a single phone call in return. Or going in an interview, and then never hearing about the company they applied with again. Even when they’re not getting the job, Millennials value feedback.
Naturally, you cannot hire every candidate that sends in their resume, but, what you can do is tell those rejected why they did not qualify. This not only allows the young talent to work on their mistakes, but it also garners a positive reputation for your company as one that takes all applicants seriously. This, in turn, means that more serious and talented young individuals will become interested in working with you, and you’re doing a great service for the future of the market by telling the young people how to improve and what to pay attention to in their next applications.
And, with that, we’ll put a stop on our little article about how to garner interest in your business among Millennials. What is important to remember is that, though inexperienced, Millennials are driven, dedicated and confident in their abilities, as well as vastly independent and willing to tackle a job with all they’ve got. As long as you play on these qualities of these young people, you are sure to create a good relationship with them, and your business is likely to grow.
Finally, Millennials are children of the modern age. They know how the modern world works, and they are the future. When running your business, you must consider that more and more of your customers are likely to be Millennials, and who better to help you attract those customers than the very people you’re trying to sell your product to.