Whether it be the Roman philosophers or those who overcame the tragedies of World War II, each generation takes pride in the age in which they live. As George Orwell put it, “Every generation imagines itself to be more intelligent than the one that went before it, and wiser than the one that comes after it.” With every new generation comes innovation and new ideas; however, this has always played a tug-of-war with traditionalism. So when it comes to the workplace, hiring the next generation can be a challenging task. With Gen Z entering the workforce, employers have new expectations to meet. This raises several questions. How does one hire Gen Z? What is the next generation looking for in a job? What practices should one not use in the hiring process?
Who is Generation Z?
Many of you may be asking yourselves these exact questions. When hiring the next generation, it is vital to remember where they are coming from. Because of the 2020 Pandemic, Gen Z began their careers with a rocky start. Working remotely became their norm, and although studies have found that Gen Z prefers the hybrid option, surveys have also shown that many of this generation desire a sense of community in the workplace. Compared to the work experience of previous generations, Gen Z has missed out on the benefits of working in person five days a week. By not having a work community, Gen Z has grown to prioritize making connections with colleagues. Along with their desire to make these connections, they have also learned the importance of mental health, time off, and balancing work and personal life.
The Expectations of Gen Z
Let’s begin with the first two questions, “how to hire Gen Z and what are they looking for in a job?” Below are some of the most common expectations Gen Z has for employers.
As mentioned previously, because Gen Z is used to working remotely, finding a flexible company is key. Studies have shown that this generation prefers to work hybrid rather than entirely in-person or even fully remote. From GenZ’s perspective, a hybrid role offers both community and the flexibility they have grown used to by working remotely. This generation also highly prioritizes a work-life balance. Therefore, paid time-off is high on the list of what Gen Z looks for in job benefits.
Although they are realistic with the hours they need to put in, they highly consider companies that value their mental health. In recent years, studies have shown that companies that encourage their employees to take most of their paid time off each year find that their employees are more productive, have higher performance levels, and are more satisfied with their roles.
Another expectation that Gen Z has for companies is to provide a sense of community. Because of the lack of opportunities to connect with people, this generation is often drawn to companies that offer a strong team environment. Businesses that value social connections and create a welcoming atmosphere are important qualities that this generation looks for.
Because they are starting their careers in an imbalanced environment, Gen Z also seeks a company that offers support. Providing proper training programs is vital for the confidence and success of people in this generation. Although they are used to working independently, Gen Z desires constant feedback. Since they are new to the workforce, they want feedback to ensure they are doing well and progressing in their careers. Furthermore, this generation values companies that offer mentorship programs and mental health check-ins.
Lastly, Gen Z is passionate about its social influence and looks for companies that share this same ambition. Companies that are active in volunteering and taking steps to create a better work environment are vitally important to this generation.
What this Generation Offers
Born in the digital age, Gen Z does not remember a time before the internet and social media. They are comfortable working with technology and the various networking platforms used today. Due to the pandemic, they are also highly ambitious and desire a challenge. The pandemic made them eager to go out into the world and make something of themselves. Because of this, they are hard workers, have an aptitude to overcome challenges, and are eager to add a new perspective to the team.
How Not to Hire Gen Z
This brings us to the principle of this article, “how not to hire Gen Z?” As an employer, you want to make sure that you add the best talent to your team and hire the applicant that is the strongest fit for the role. However, due to the past few years’ events, hiring Gen Z applicants is a whole different ball game. As we have already discussed, this generation has many strengths and can add much to the team. As an employer, it is essential to keep this in mind and use their ambition to your advantage. So, when it comes to hiring this generation, there are several methods in the hiring process that need change.
First, when writing a job description, it is important to keep it updated to attract the best talent. To capture GenZ’s attention, illustrate the necessity of the role. People in this generation are looking for purpose and influence, so creating a job description that expresses this is key.
Second, due to the pandemic, online interviews have become the norm. This is what Gen Z are used to, and most prefer them. Although in-person interviews are understandably necessary for specific roles and positions, online interviews are more favorable to this generation.
Third, you must convey trust and support during the interview and onboarding process. Communication is key for this generation, and it is important that you create a space where people feel comfortable.
Moving Forward with Gen Z
With every new generation comes different demands and challenges. As an employer, it can be difficult to determine how to hire the next generation. However, through the information given in this article or with the help of our team, you will be prepared to successfully hire Gen Z.
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