What Does Gen Z Look for in Companies?
A new population, Gen Z, comprises 32% of the global population and is now entering the workforce. This generation is quite unique. This generation understands its impact on the larger society and advocates for others’ rights other than just their own. LGBTQ, sustainability, plant-based diet, diversity, and inclusion issues matter more to this generation than the previous generations. As Gen Z is seeking career opportunities, it looks for companies that align with their values. What does this mean for companies? If companies want to hire top talent, they must know how to recruit Gen Z and the factors that attract this group, from which they can select ideal candidates.
What Shapes Gen Z’s Worldview
Before diving deeper into Generation Z recruitment, companies must first understand what shaped Gen Z’s worldview. What influenced Gen Z to have such a worldview?
Here are key life occurrences that influenced Gen Z according to Deloitte’s survey:
The Great Recession in 2008 resulting their parents and siblings to lose jobs and move back home.
Rising expenses of necessities such as housing, food, healthcare, and transportation.
Increase in the number of people with higher education, followed by increased student debt
The widened wealth gap between high and low-income groups
What Is Important for Recruiters to Know about Gen Z?
As companies strive towards meeting customers’ needs, the job recruiters should also value proposition their companies to recruit Gen Z who will drive the company’s future. Here are the 3 most important Gen Z recruiting trends.
Salary and Benefits. Having to grow up throughout the Great Recession, Gen Z seeks a stable environment as the individuals in this group witnessed their relatives losing jobs. While salary provides the most financial security, other factors such as perks, benefits, work-life balance, and flexible hours yield stability for this generation. Small to medium companies may not afford to offer higher salaries for young professionals but they surely can utilize perks and benefits to attract applicants. These companies can host a monthly celebration to recognize the employee’s hard work and give gift cards as presents, creating a fun work environment. Before moving the office to the virtual environment, some companies allowed employees to work from home one day out of the week. Recently, Facebook granted employees to work from home even after employees can safely return to the workplace. Both large and small businesses can creatively modify the work environment that appeals to Gen Z.
Opportunity for Career Development. Gen Z is now more educated than ever and believes in the important value of college education. Their desire to grow doesn’t stop after college. They seek companies that teach more skills relevant to the industry. Also, they want to grow from taking responsibility for tasks that they can learn from. While Gen Z does work well in teams, it also has an entrepreneurial mindset to take ownership of the work. Gen Z will stay more loyal to companies that allow this freedom, especially with security salary and benefits.
Good global citizenship. “Global citizenship” is an emerging term; it means that one sees the connection between herself and the world. Thus, one believes that his or her actions impact the world and therefore, he or she carries out actions that positively impact the world. While Gen Z highly rates salary and benefits in company preferences, this group also values working to bettering the larger society. Thus, companies should aim to maintain ethics and drive positive societal change. For instance, many fashion retailers planned their dedication to the fair treatment of workers in the supply chain, creating a safe work environment, and abolishing child labor. Nike has a program that promotes girls and boys to participate in sports and build character through sports. Mondelez International, the Oreo company, reduced its CO2 emission by 20% in the past two years.
Another important topic for Gen Z is diversity. With the recent interaction between the police and black civilians, Gen Z is now more sensitive towards equality for all people. Diversity matters to this generation and companies should also demonstrate diversity and inclusion in their culture. In recruiting events, companies should market what they are doing in order to provide a safe, judge-free zone for minorities, LGBTQ, and disabilities’ communities. These efforts will help to diversify their talent acquisition. Societal changes such as human rights, community involvement, and sustainability are all issues that Gen Z values in addition to the companies’ products and services.
While Gen Z focuses heavily on salaries and benefits when choosing companies, the individuals of this group also consider other values when looking for companies to interview. Soon, Gen Z will make up a large percentage of the workforce, and companies should understand the Gen Z recruiting trends in order to recruit Gen Z and manage Gen Z in the workplace. As much as job recruiters are screening top candidates, the applicants are sorting through companies that provide professional growth and a sense of working for a higher purpose.
Miller, Lee, and Wei Lu. “Gen Z Is Set to Outnumber Millennials Within a Year.” Bloomberg.com, Bloomberg, 2018, http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-08-20/gen-z-to-outnumber-millennials-within-a-year-demographic-trends.
Gomez, Karianne, et al. “Welcome to Generation Z.” Deloitte LLP.