What Really Attracts Young Job Seekers?

The question that hovers in most business executives’ minds is how to attract and retain top prospects in today’s business climate.

As everybody knows, talented employees are well worth the effort it takes to recruit them. According to recent Gallup research, when companies select top 20% most talented people for a role, they see a 10% increase in productivity, 20% in sales and a staggering 30% increase in profitability.

A vast majority of managers use money to attract top prospects, however, while salary still plays a huge role in their decision, most of today’s top candidates cannot be persuaded by money.

What Really Attracts Young Talent

The first question here is, how well do you know your potential employees? For the first time in history, millennials have become the biggest generational cohort the United States workforce, with around 54 million of millennials making up the labor force, according to Pew Research Center.

This means, in order to fill your staff with perspective, young employees, you need to cater to them. And keep in mind, millennials grew up in a completely different setting than previous generations.

They’ve grew up in time of rapid tech advancements and financial prosperity and a business career means more than a stable place of work for a quarter of century. Instead, millennials are looking at things like company culture, values and community.

One more things millennials care about is your reputation as a business, which encompasses everything from your volunteerism to your employer brand. So in order to help you align your company’s brand with the needs of modern job seekers, here are a couple of things you need to do to draw young employees.

Three Ways to Draw Employees in the Current Climate

1.      Offer More Flexibility on the Job

Flexibility means a lot of things. For some employees, it’s all about the flexibility of their schedule and the ability to work a couple of hours from their home every week. While for others, flexibility has to do with the location of your offices and the distance from their home.

Whatever the case may be, it seems like job flexibility is a lot more important to modern workers than salary, bonuses and promotions. According to PWC research, employees of all generations are currently prioritizing flexibility in their jobs.

You have to keep in mind that most of your employees have families. This means if you allow them to work from home a couple of days every month, you’ll enable them to attend soccer games, school plays and overall spend more time with their families.

Telecommuting is no longer a perk – it’s slowly becoming a necessity for most workers. According to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 23% of employees in the United States now do a portion of their work remotely, up from 19% back in 2003.

2.      Start Making Connections Early

Millennials are more prepared to enter the business world than their predecessors, which means you need to take careful steps to attract and keep them. First thing you need to realize is that most graduates today have some work experience before they start looking for employment seriously.

According to Fast Company research, roughly 72% of recent grads have had an apprenticeship or internship during college. And while this means that they have bigger expectations from their future employers, you can use this for your advantage.

This type of work experience usually gets talented candidates excited about work before they even graduate, and it will allow you to pinpoint the top talent early. Organizations that don’t offer internships will only leave the most promising employees on the table for the competition to recruit.

Also, it would be smart to connect with internship programs like Premium Graduate, which offer young grads opportunities to further their knowledge while they are still in college to access the talent pool, before you start hiring.

3.      Present an Opportunity for Professional Development

Just like job flexibility, professional development is more important to millennial employees than financial offerings, when selecting a potential employer. Last year’s Deloitte Millennial Survey revealed that “an opportunity to progress” is the second most important factor when evaluating job opportunities.

Don’t get us wrong, even though compensation is still one of the strongest drivers of employer choice, if the candidate is choosing between companies offering similar financial incentives, other factors, like the opportunities for development come into play and may persuade the candidate.

Furthermore, most young people expect to have a number of different careers in their lifetime. According to Bureau of Labor Statistics, your average millennial had more than 6 jobs by the age of 26. So why don’t you enable young workers to have multiple careers within your organization to motivate them to stay on board.

Therefore, you should give them the access to the training and tools they need to move both horizontally and vertically. Let them experience your company from top to bottom and create a long-lasting bond with them that will keep them invested in your company’s success for years to come.

Final Thoughts: Hiring is Only Half the Battle

Even after you’ve taken steps required to attract and recruit top employees, there are still a couple of things you need to work out if you want to keep them on your payroll.

And first and foremost, you need to find out what motivates your workers on a personal level.

As we mentioned in the introduction, most employers make the mistake of assuming that people could be persuaded by money. This – unfortunately for some – just isn’t the case. In fact, recent studies have shown that more than a few loyal employees are excited more by career advancing opportunities than anything else.

According to research from the Small Business Administration, things like promotions, opportunities to learn and other non-monetary incentive to stay loyal to their organizations. However, you need to realize that all of your employees have different aspirations, so you have to discover what excites them individually.

Once you’ve discovered this, you’ll be able to use this knowledge as a bait to keep your employees hooked for many years to come.