How To Recruit The New Neoteric Generation Z

Hordes of articles have been written on the subject of Generation Y and how they’ve changed the recruitment landscape, being the first generation of professionals to grow up, both into and with the digital revolution.

Gen Y are gradually becoming old news. They are gently being overtaken by the new kids on the block. Generation Z. Generation Z represents anyone born roughly around the year 2000. Technological whizz kids by BIRTH. These soon to be graduates are the future of the professional arena. The neoteric, ‘sexy’ generation. You may have coined a strategy to adapt to Millennial recruitment, but have you even glimpsed a thought towards their younger brothers and sisters?

Born into a new form of digitized economy, the first of any generation in history to do so, it is said that 37.8% of Gen Z have hopes of ‘inventing something that will change the world’ (Sparks & Honey, NY). That is a staggering percentage when you consider population growth and the sum of game-changer businesses that have sprouted up as a result of online industry in the last 10 years or so.

Generation Z won’t have known a day where mobile phones and personal computers didn’t exist. A young Millennial myself, I still recall the monster of a machine we had in our village primary school which possessed the most horrific graphic display and took at least half an hour to start up. I remember the day my parents bought our first PC. The prospect of it was overwhelmingly exciting for my brother and I. The sound of the internet dial-up and the first computer games (Tomb Raider and The Heart of Darkness were personal favourites) dominated the first few years of our new, digital world at home. Generation Z will likely be unable to fathom such transition. The first Toy Story film came out in 1996, and this, in itself was a huge alteration for the cartoon-loving, Scooby Doo era, with its fascinating computer-graphics breaching the gap between cartoon and reality. Most of Gen Z weren’t even born when Toy Story hit the cinemas. Do you feel old yet?

It is no surprise that it’s time to think about a change in strategy when considering upcoming graduates. Generation Z are more tech savvy than any generation has ever been, and they’ve got big ideas! Here are a few things to consider when thinking about recruiting those Gen Z superstars:

 

Cater To A Leader

Generation Z are going to be completely different from Generation Y in terms of their career aspirations. This is largely to do with the state of the world when they made their entrance. With wars, conflict, economic struggle and violence, Generation Z have grown up in a world where they can easy identify the essential improvements needed and they are going to be the generation to challenge it.

Sounds great right? A generation of go-getters. So where is the challenge where recruitment strategy is concerned? As a recruiter, you may find it surprisingly difficult to recruit fresh Gen Z’s who are happy to work for someone else, and the ones that are game will have higher expectations in terms of their roles. Expectations in terms of salary will be less important. This generation are far more captivated by the idea of ‘doing what they love’ than by receiving a chunky salary each year.

If you want to appeal to Gen Z, begin with your job ads. Rather than banging on about benefits and competitive salary, focus on the long term prospects and opportunities you offer for growth and development. This is what your new recruits will be searching for. Illustrate clear paths to leadership – you already see this with fast-track graduate schemes, so you can do your research first.

 

Use Tech Well

Think about it. You’re dealing with a generation who grew up tapping away on iPhones and watching Netflix on their parents’ iPads. You need to completely readdress how you use technology as part of your recruitment process. Forget emails. Students aren’t likely to want to interact by email now. They probably don’t even use their email accounts. They only have them so they can buy apps and register for online shopping. Pushing out employer branded content through Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram is going to be far more effective. Ever thought of Snapchat? Generation Z are different to Gen Y in terms of how and why they utilise social media. Gen Z use social media to gain a sense of validation and inclusion. If I browse my 18 year old niece’s Instagram, she boasts thousands of followers and on average 150 likes per photo. For Gen Y we’re lucky if we hit 500! I once asked her to post a photo on Instagram so that I could observe what happened, and it baffled me how reactive her peers were to what I thought was a fairly boring ‘selfie’ (don’t even get me started on the selfie!). This generation is completely engrossed in a virtual, social media world, and businesses must adjust their strategy to cater to the locations that their new audience is operating in.

 

Tell A Story

Gen Z can smell the mud a mile off. You need to be able to tell an authentic brand story with conviction and sincerity if you’re looking to attract this new breed of graduates into your businesses. You need to appeal to your audience and utilise the resources you’ve got. Think about the more recent graduates you currently employ. They will do a much better job at resonating with Generation Z than your more senior colleagues. It is that empathy that will attract Gen Z to connect with and follow your business. Tread carefully around the messages you’re trying to convey, and as mentioned in both points above, be strategic about the social media you use and be sensitive to the aspirations of the age group you’re dealing with.

 

This could undoubtedly turn into a 3000 word essay, but expect more articles on Generation Z. It is interesting to think about recruiting this new generation. For me, it made me think really hard about how much the world has transformed in the short time that I’ve been in it. My Gen Z nieces are only 5/6 years younger than me. In the short space of time between my birth and theirs, we’ve seen such a jump in technology, that the way I was initially recruited just a few short years ago, is worlds away from what will attract them to the work place now.

 

Looking to attract Gen Z into your marketing team? Call the team on 0203 176 6677. Our Account Managers are here to assist!

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