Recruiting the best candidates isn’t always easy. HR outsourcing firms and hiring managers know this. With recent college graduates entering the workforce, different factors are at stake when it comes to making a decision about where to work. Whether you outsource hiring or conduct it in-house, if you’re looking to recruit from Generation Y, you need to understand how they view the workplace and what they’re looking for in an employer so you can ensure your business is a good fit with these recent graduates. Here’s an inside look at how Gen Y views the workplace.
What Generation Y employees value in a company is different from what older generations prefer. Achievers and Experience Inc. found that 54 percent of Gen Y considers career advancement opportunities as the most important when deciding where to work, followed by interesting, challenging work and salary at 51 percent each. A 2010 study conducted by Johnson Controls found that the 45+ workforce lists meaningful work as the most important while Gen Y is ready to engage with companies that provide environments in which they can grow and evolve. Because this generation place such an emphasis on growing as an employee, they’re more likely to work for a company where they are learning, a company that coaches and develops new hires.
The work environment that Gen Y prefers is different than that of other generations. 79 percent prefer to be mobile rather than static workers and more than 70 percent prefer an urban to slightly urban location. While more than 60 percent of the generation Y prefers a flexible way of working, only less than 25 percent actually expect their employers to offer it. Because Millenials view the workplace as a place to work and socialize, 41 percent of the Millenials prefer to have access to a team space and 32 percent prefer breakout working spaces rather than a conventional meeting room. Johnson Controls also discovered that Generation Y aspires to work in a greener office. Gen Y workers want an open working environment that is eco-friendly and flexible. If your business can’t offer the ideal working environment of Millenials, consider how you can incorporate what they are looking for into your office.
Motivating Gen Y goes beyond the financials. This is a generation of employees that expect quick feedback. 81 percent of the Achievers study respondents listed travel rewards (i.e. flight and hotel to a destination) as the most appealing reward program a company could offer, followed by experience rewards at 70 percent. Dr. Bob Nelson, an authority on employee recognition, points out that 89 percent of today’s employees report that recognition is very or extremely important to them. The recognition someone receives for each positive work action can act as a motivator for continued good work. How you listen, question, speak and give feedback are essential to keeping your Gen Y employees motivated.
Gen Y is looking for a challenge when they come to the workplace. Make sure you’re able to offer employees challenging, yet meaningful work. Keep in mind that this is a generation of hyper-connected and social employees. They want to be able to easily collaborate and socialize with colleagues without the worry of a micro-manager’s constant supervision. If you’re looking to hire new employees from this connected generation, make sure your recruiting firm or HR department convey whatever your business offers that most appeals to Gen Y in the job postings.