The candidate-driven market and "Generation Why"
In part 1, we took a look at what a “candidate-driven” market means for your company. In part 2, we’ll look at understanding the folks within that market.
The Millennial workforce. Oh, my goodness. We’ve all heard the stats. In 2017, Millennials finally edged out GenXer’s as the predominant share of US workers. And, you can forget about the Baby Boomers. The Baby Boomers are using flip phones to book retirement condos. Today, the most tech-savvy members of society now occupy the lion’s share of the current workforce. It sounds impressive, but what does that really mean?
For our purposes, the purposes of finding, hiring and retaining talent, it means we need to understand the motivations and aspirations of this highly mobile, informed and discerning demographic. What makes your average Millennial tick? Well, we know Millennials are attached to their phones, we know where they’re getting their information, we know they are distrustful of the media, financial institutions, politicians and home ownership. And all for good reason. After all, Millennials have lived through the subprime mortgage disaster, bank bailouts, the recession, multiple wars, major news networks and the latest elections. They can sniff out media spin and institutionalized nonsense faster than a Nigerian prince can collect granny’s pension check.
When it comes to work, the Germans call Millennials “Generation Maybe.” They have such an overwhelming array of opportunity in front of them that they can’t commit to any. From my daily perspective, I see a workforce that, while definitely “me focused,” is willing and very capable of commitment, performance and growth. Today’s workforce needs to see and understand what’s in it for them to make a career decision. It would be easy to turn this into a screed about selfishness, immediate gratification and lack of character, but the simple truth is this; the Millennial Generation was born into a world of immediate information, immediate communication and immediate reward. Hiring managers need to swim confidently in these waters and provide the necessary bait to attract the biggest and best population of candidates.
Web presence is the governing factor in attracting the attention of Millennials. Your job postings and websites, your company blogs and profiles, your advertisements, career pages and reviews have never had as much importance and influence as they do right now. We should call the Millennials “Generation Why.” We need to remodel our web presence to answer their questions… “Why should I apply for this job?” “Why should I work for your company?” “Why do I need to fill out a 7 page application?” “Why does your job description have a list of 14 have-to-haves? Are you cheap or just a micromanager?”
The Chinese call Millennials the Generation that Eats the Old. The term might make some brutal sense. Like any generation, some folks are hungrier than others. The hungry ones tend not to be living in their parents’ basements but out developing a career, perhaps replacing less technically savvy legacy workers. These are the people who look while they work, they survey the employment landscape for the next rung up the ladder and the next potent bullet point on their resume. Are they productive in their position? Absolutely. Will they help in the optimization and growth of your company? Certainly. Will they stick around for 5 years? Without engagement, growth opportunities and a good environment, not likely.
Regardless, the writing is on the wall. The world has moved into information hyper-drive. Companies need to attract attention to themselves to get a shot at the best talent. Companies need to sell their story and opportunities. How do we do this? Next time, we’ll look at the difference between simply posting jobs and attracting talent.
So, what can you do? Tune in next time and we’ll discuss.
About the Author
Patrick McLaughlin is an adept and empowering Talent Acquisition Professional, Managing MEA’s Recruiting Services. He has taken both new and seasoned recruiting teams to new levels of productivity utilizing innovative best practices and bullet-proof recruiting fundamentals. Most recently Patrick has developed a core selection of Recruiting Products designed to alleviate MEA Member’s growing pains when it comes to Job Posting & Advertisement, Sourcing, Recruitment and Staffing.