Hiring for Generation Y: The Millennials

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January 19, 2013


Hiring Generation Y - MillennialsIn our last blog post, Hiring for Multi-Generational Diversity, we addressed the importance of considering each generation when hiring a diverse workforce. Generation Y (also known as “Millennials”), were born between 1980 and 2000, and are currently the newest members of the workforce.  In this post, we’ll examine how to attract, hire and retain Generation Y employees while integrating them with the rest of your workforce.

Typical Characteristics of Millennials:

  • Tech-savvy: These employees grew up using computers and the Internet as the main form of communication. Thus, they are very comfortable – if not dependent – on technology, and on using it in the workplace, and enjoy the challenge of learning new things. Take advantage of these traits in a job position that requires technological expertise or one in which the job can help your company expand its brand online.
  • Organized Chaos: Experienced multi-taskers, Millennials can juggle many different jobs, and may prefer handling multiple responsibilities rather than having a few, select duties. Staying organized amid the clutter will be crucial to this group’s success.  Consider this quality when hiring for a specific position with a limited function or for one that requires “wearing many hats.”
  • Flexibility of Workforce: Millennials joined the workforce when telecommuting became popular, so this group expects more flexibility when it comes to working remotely vs. working on-site. On the flip-side, this group is willing to put in the extra hours at night or on weekends to get the job done if a company provides the resources to do so.
  • Individuals and Team Players: The Gen Y worker is comfortable collaborating as a group, but also strives to find individual acceptance as a leader. These dynamics will change as the generation gets older, but this group can generally work well in either a group or individual setting.
  • Recognition: Millennials want to be rewarded for their efforts – whether it’s through public acknowledgement or monetary benefits. When negotiating for a job salary or benefits, this generation is not afraid to speak up for what they want.
  • Jobs with Meaning: Generation Y is not as willing to settle for a career that doesn’t allow them to live the life of their dreams. Therefore, the job itself should fulfill a passion or interest, or should allow the candidate to earn a living while enjoying their life. A job that allows for both? Even better.

Recruiting Tactics for Generation Y:

To recruit employees in the Millennial generation, your tactics might include the following:

  • Being social: Find candidates online using social networks, and use these networks to search for candidates with the perfect skill sets.
  • Allowing for growth and learning: Give Millennial candidates opportunities to learn new skills on the job or through training courses.
  • Touting flexible benefits: Show Millennials that you value their work-life balance, and offer them flexibility in benefits and work locations.
  • Embracing your mission: Show Generation Y candidates how they can be a part of your larger vision to give them reason to work for your company.

While each person may not demonstrate all of the characteristics of the Millennial generation, knowing the typical work ethic and dynamic of this generation can help employers reach out to hire them for ideal positions, as well as to tailor their work environment for ideal achievement.