Despite the bad press, millennials are shaping the way for the modern job market. Millennial professionals (those born between 1981 and 1996) are now the largest working generation, and approach their work in a manner that is wholly different from their predecessors.
They want to be in full control of their own lives, find satisfaction in a blend of professional and personal pursuits, and are willing to put in the hard graft to reach their goals. Research from a 2018 Deloitte study showed that only 48 percent of this generation believe businesses conduct themselves ethically compared to 65 percent in the previous year. This criticism extends to leadership, as they don’t see a clear vision from today’s business leaders on how they will help improve society and shape the future to come. These factors ultimately influence where millennials want to work, and the type of roles they choose.
So how can you attract the top millennial talent, and what needs to be done to retain staff?
While home working and flexible hours are now becoming more popular, it’s still a major taboo within many companies, which can potentially damage employee retention if businesses aren’t willing to adapt.
A recent study conducted by PWC revealed that millennials ‘work well with clear instructions and targets’ and suggested that managers need to focus on ‘whether or not the task gets done well and on time, rather than where or how they complete the task’. If an employee is therefore delivering high quality work and showing their productivity, does it matter if they are at a coffee shop, in pyjamas or at their desk? Keep your talent happy and engaged by providing them with solid, flexible working benefits.
Let’s face it, we all appreciate recognition for our efforts. But it’s an absolute essential for millennial staff, as regular feedback can provide them with a means to measure their success and take stock of their progress. Their ambition defines them, so make sure you’re doing all you can to arm your employees with the tools to achieve their goals.
Mentoring and performance management can help in this regard, as well as performance improvement if it’s necessary. This supports long-term development for millennials within the business, and encourages employee self-reflection.
Show your digital assets
It’s never been more crucial for you to modernise your business. In order to attract the top millennial talent, you need to establish a solid online presence that shows a forward-thinking approach. It’s obvious to state that social media reigns supreme for millennials, but you need to think carefully about your brand and the message you want to send.
An aspect of millennial hyper-social behaviour is their trust in user generated content (UGC). This doesn’t necessarily mean a homemade YouTube video or social campaign, but something that is created by a real person or consumer as opposed to a faceless company.
In essence, it’s about establishing a genuine connection with your audience through authentic content, so be sure to keep a close eye on your social stats and SEO to suss out what’s working and what isn’t.
Millennials look beyond a salary when considering a potential job role. Deloitte’s research also revealed that millennial’s decisions are more often determined by factors such as whether they feel a sense of purpose and worth in their role.
Ultimately, millennials need their employers to show them that they are valued in their workplace, and that they are contributing to business goals. You’ll need to ensure that you make use of individual skills, and encourage them to immerse themselves in wider work projects. This allows your millennial staff to experience a wealth of opportunity, and perfect their skills while working collaboratively. You’ll also develop an environment that is supportive and inclusive simultaneously, which will boost your credentials as an attractive employer.
If you’re able to offer a role within a dynamic workplace environment that has meaningful purpose, you’re well on your way to attracting top talent. You’ll need to ensure that there are clear pathways to career development, as well as offering that all-important work life balance in the form of flexible working.
It can sometimes take drastic change within businesses to be able to offer this criteria, but the rewards are there for the taking. Motivated millennials have the potential to be one of the most productive generations to enter the workforce; be sure to invest in this talent wisely.
Are you on the hunt for top-tier millennial staff? Drop us a line and we’ll make ourselves useful.