4 things millennials want out of work

Nolan Gray Market Trends, Products & Technology

People tend to talk about millennials a lot when it comes to everything from marketing to leadership, but many older generations are still perplexed by this group, also known as generation Y. For recruiters who need to reach out to these job seekers, it’s important to know what this group is looking for. Within the next few years, young folks will saturate the workforce. According to a 2014 study from Brookings, by the year 2020, almost 100 percent of millennials will be over 18 and will make up 30 percent of the workforce. Determining what makes them tick helps recruiters figure out how to reach them, whether through social recruiting or digital marketing tactics.

What does Gen Y really want? A Software Advice study answers this question. A significant number of the company’s applicants are millennials, which gave the organization a prime opportunity to gain insight into what millennials want out of work. The company looked at a sample of 1,355 applications to gauge the work-related sentiments of generation Y.

1. Show me the money
The study found 34 percent of millennials are drawn to salary and benefits. Hey, millennials have to eat. Given how many of these kids are saddled with debt from expensive college educations, a strong salary may not be a desire so much as a need, at least early on. The report also noted that some applicants who didn’t see salary as important had transitioned from higher-paying jobs to find positions that made them happier.

2. Culture and atmosphere
After compensation, culture and atmosphere were the most important attributes of a job. The lesson for recruiters? Use employer branding to demonstrate the cultural side of your organization and the perks, not just what your company does. Brookings found that Google, Apple and Facebook were the top desirable places for millenials to work, so you might want to look to these companies for tips.

3. Greater meaning
Software Advice’s study also found that 30 percent of millennials look for fulfillment and satisfaction in work. As we noted earlier, they may even sacrifice a fat paycheck for it. Previous studies back this up as well. According to Pew Research Center, millennials are more likely to say enjoying a job is important to them, compared to older generations.

4. Development
One-quarter of millennials also agreed growth and development are important. This group wants to come away from positions with skills it can use for the future. Dead-end positions don’t appeal to millennials.

Recruiters need to focus on employer branding and social recruiting to gain the interest of millennials. Use your social recruiting strategies to highlight the attributes of work that appeal most to this demographic, such as behind-the-scenes photos of your last bonding activity, whether it was a 5K or a pie-eating contest. If you have philanthropic or sustainable initiatives, highlight these too. Millennials want to feel like their work matters. Whatever attributes your company has that appeal to millennials, be sure to emphasize them with employer branding. This way, you’ll be able to fill your applicant tracking pipeline with young talent.

Jobscience | Beyond the Applicant Tracking System

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