Best Practices for Recruiting Millennial Workers


image_26Every effective human resources professional is also an accomplished sociologist.  The best practices for recruiting and retaining top talent changes from generation to generation.  This is especially true when it comes to what is known as the millennial or Gen Y generation.

Millennial Generation

The millennial generation refers to anyone that was born between the years of 1982 and 2002.  Just like previous generations, most millennials exhibit unique characteristics when it comes to pursuing a professional career.  Although income and security are important, millennials seem to be more interested in developing meaningful relationships and finding purpose in their personal and professional lives.

It’s estimated that Gen Y workers will make up 75 percent of the workforce by 2025.  Unlike the preceding generation, millennials aren’t necessarily interested in job security or spending an entire career with one company.  According to Undercover Recruiter, millennial workers are idealistic, ambitious, digitally proficient and diverse[1].  Over 70 percent of existing millennial workers intend to leave their job once the economy improves.

Recruiting Millennials

HR professionals are finding that developing a relationship with Gen Y job prospects is more effective than selling the salary and perks of a professional position.  Many companies begin networking with future job prospects early on in college.  Millennial job applicants rely on social media to research and get to know prospective employers.  Nevertheless, it shouldn’t be assumed that social networking alone is the answer to attracting talented millennials.

Millennial workers want to identify with the company they work for and be part of a company culture that promotes camaraderie and high employee morale[2].  They want to make a difference and be involved in the decision making process.  Employers are encouraged to embrace the entrepreneurial spirit, provide lots of feedback and understand that millennial employees are seeking opportunities to grow and advance.

Gen Y Stereotypes

As with any set of assumptions, the stereotypes generally attributed to the millennial generation won’t apply to every job prospect.  There are many exceptions to every rule.  Understanding the world view of millennials is crucial in today’s workforce environment, but identifying the aspirations of individual job candidates is far more important.  Finally, a company should never cater to millennials at the expense of an achievement oriented workforce culture.