5 Fail-Proof Ideas for Hiring Millennials

| Ameya Deshmukh
Talent Acquisition, Future of Work

You could be approaching 75% of your candidates in the wrong way.  By 2025, Millennials will account for 75% of the global workforce. Today, they are already a majority in the workforce. Reading this article will change the way you and your team approach hiring Millennials.

The latest research on hiring millennials

This article is based on research from the Qualtrics survey of 6,000 Millennials, Deloitte’s Global 2019 Millennial Survey, and data from the Pew social trends research center. You can access the original research files here, here, and here.

From these reports, I’ve identified 5 themes and written out best practices for each that’ll help you become more effective at hiring Millennials:

  1. Millennials are wary of gender discrimination
  2. Millennials are influenced through networks
  3. Millennials want purpose
  4. Millennials don’t feel confident about work
  5. Millennials are technology-oriented

1. Millennials are wary of gender discrimination

As individuals they are less gender-biased than previous generations, most Millennials say men and women are equally effective leaders.

Millennial women who say their gender affects their career opportunities are 6x more likely to say they are not judged on the same criteria as their male peers at work.

But in a surprising twist, in the survey, millennial men were 50% more likely than women to say their gender affects their career opportunities.

How to address gender issues

In your imagery and your material make sure you address both men and women.

Millennial men are also reporting facing gender discrimination. One area where it’s important to consider this would be in nursing. Involving male nurses in recruitment efforts will help increase representation.

Note that, as the most diverse generation in U.S. history, Millennials are also very tuned into racial bias and other forms of ethnic discrimination. Make sure all recruiting material is gender and ethnically representational.


2. Millennials are influenced through networks

Contrary to expectations, 57% of Millennials say they are influenced by advertising. This is 2x more than previous generations. They are also 3x more likely to turn to social media for product purchase advice.

They are also skeptical of claims from advertisers and put more weight in their peer networks. 54% of Millennials use independent review sites and friends to influence their purchases.

3 ways to use networks when hiring Millennials

I think hiring teams should do more employee storytelling and recruitment marketing. They should then share this content on social media platforms. Your millennial candidates are looking at your company’s Instagram and Youtube accounts when “selecting” you as an employer.

Next, hiring teams should also ensure they have a strong presence on Glassdoor and other employee review websites. This can be done by asking and incentivizing employees to leave anonymous reviews on the website.

Finally, hiring teams should focus on creating an excellent candidate experience. Millennials refer to their friends for advice. Creating an excellent candidate experience means you can benefit from referrals from millennial peer networks.


3. Millennials want purpose  

They want purpose in what they buy and good brands are winning. 42% of Millennials are more likely to purchase from organizations that support causes they identify with, this is much higher than their parents.

This behavior also extends to their working preferences. 75% of millennial workers said they’d be willing to accept a smaller salary to work for a company that was more socially/environmentally responsible.

Best practices for using purpose for hiring Millennials

Position your company and the role in the light of making a positive impact on people, communities, and the world. You can do this by sharing the social and environmental impacts your company achieves. You can also do this on an individual level by talking to the impact of the position.

This is easy to do with knowledge work roles. But it’s commonly believed that it is challenging or even impossible in occupations like a retail floor clerk or an assembly line position. Not true. Bernsteins research proved that any position can turn into knowledge work.

For example, culturally you could turn a retail clerk position into knowledge work by engaging employees to share insights on how operations could be improved. Then hiring teams could amplify this through employee storytelling content.

Modifying the culture and storytelling around high volume roles like those found in retail to make the work more meaningful is needed to hire more millennials. It also has the benefit of being better for business and is tied to increased profits.


4. Millennials don’t feel confident about work

Only 52% of older Millennials feel they understand the process of getting a full-time job, and the number drops to 35% for younger Millennials.  They are also 2x more worried about their capacity for success and skill set than previous generations.

Millennials are a mobile workforce in more ways than one. Because of how technology has created more access to the job market, they switch jobs more than previous generations. They are also 3x more likely to be willing to relocate than previous generations.

How to adapt your recruiting strategy for Millennials  

They aren’t clear about the process of finding full-time work. This leads to fear which can lead to negative candidate experiences. Focusing on creating a positive transparent and engaging candidate experience is very important.

Next, I think your hiring team should start casting a wider net to Millennials in other cities about your open positions. Millennials are more willing to relocate than previous generations, so your recruiting team needs to be active in more time zones while also providing a better experience in each of them.


5. Millennials are technology-oriented

79% of Millennials sleep with their phones by their beds and more than 50% of them wake up and check it at least once per night. They’re nearly twice as likely as older generations to say technology has made their work-life balance better. They also adopt technology at least 2x faster than gen Xers and baby boomers.

Use technology to engage Millennials

Deliver your recruitment marketing content on new social media platforms, that’s where the Millennial audience is. Use text messages and chat applications to engage them in hiring discussions.

Furthermore, use recruiting automation like conversational AI to allow Millennials to engage with your hiring process on their own time. For many Millennials, they may prefer to engage with a hiring conversation over text message at 11 pm. Very far past working hours.


Get an edge in hiring Millennials with conversational AI

Conversational AI can add value to every part of your recruiting strategy for Millennials. It’s proven to improve diversity & carefully designed to be free of unconscious bias. It creates a fantastic candidate experience and is well received by candidates and hiring teams alike.

It makes high volume hiring more efficient. Conversational AI also helps to make the hiring process clear. Finally, conversational AI allows Millennial candidates to progress in the hiring process outside of normal working hours. Adopting AI in recruiting enables you to be active in every time zone and to engage every candidate.

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