The Deloitte Millennial Survey in 2021 claims that only 34 percent of millennials and 21% of Gen Z'ers envisage staying with an employer for longer than five years. For most of them, the longest they envisage remaining with the same employer is just two years. Companies therefore face the challenge of providing their employees with long-term satisfaction through proactive measures aimed at retaining them. At the end of the day, a long-term working relationship safeguards your company against the need to recruit and provide induction training for new employees at short intervals. Activities that take up a great deal of time and are costly, but that also disrupt team spirit and deplete the company's knowledge pool. The following five tips are intended to help you offer guidance to students and recent graduates and persuade them to remain loyal to your company.
Tip no. 1 Offer further education opportunities
Unlike previous generations, Gen Z places less emphasis on having a high salary when choosing a job. Instead, these students and recent graduates are keen on further training opportunities and the chance to develop their own skill sets. For a good third of the almost 3000 students polled in our recent survey, further education options actually constitute one of the most important criteria when selecting an employer. Although new employees do of course bring their own skills with them, you can inspire them by providing regular further training courses and you can create a space in which your young employees can try things out for themselves. In addition, students and recent graduates feel valued because their employer is investing in them. This strengthens your employer brand and the long-term working conditions you can provide.
Tip no. 2 Start recruiting while they are still in university
In particular, shortly before graduation, most students still have no firm notion of the career they would most like to pursue. Take the opportunity to raise your profile even in that university environment by positioning yourself at university trade fairs, career events and by providing internships. This enables you to provide graduates with an early impression of your company and of your employer brand. Smart tools, such as those provided by JobTeaser, can help you to implement this form of recruitment, university marketing, quickly and inexpensively. To learn more about how you can design your university marketing successfully, please see our free guide:
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Tip no. 3 Promote personal interests
Gen Z places particularly high value on finding a job that they are passionate about. When workplace duties and personal interests coincide, your employees will generally be more satisfied and will work in a more motivated way. Therefore, if you succeed in addressing the interests of your employees, they will in turn be more inspired about the work they do. It can be helpful to talk to your students and recent graduates and to get to know them as individuals rather than just as employees. You can, for example, use quality surveys to find out what motivates your employees and what they want from their daily working lives.
Tip no. 4 Demonstrate that you value people and provide verbal feedback
In particular, employees who are young and still inexperienced would like their line managers to provide them with regular feedback about how they are performing. At the end of the day, this is simply a way of highlighting where, if any, there may be scope for improvement. Especially with new tasks, you should therefore take care to ensure that you provide your students and recent graduates with constructive feedback. In doing so, you should not restrict yourself merely to suggestions for improvement but also highlight what you feel has worked particularly well. Otherwise you run the risk of making your employees feel that the job is not a good fit for them.
Tip no. 5 Be prepared to listen to proposals and problems
As much as you should provide your employees with feedback, you should also listen to what they have to say. Employees often find it difficult to express unsolicited criticism or to describe problems without being prompted. Instead, a great deal can be left unsaid. You could therefore, for example, schedule regular appointments for feedback meetings into your diary that can be held as and when needed. In that way, you prevent pressure from building up and you also avoid failing to identify problems at an early stage.
In conclusion, The perfect balance between carrot and stick
Job satisfaction is not just about the salary or the new post. Frequently, Gen Z employees opt for a change of job for entirely different reasons: The lack of new challenges, an absence of recognition or unclear communication can weigh heavily and can prompt your employees to go elsewhere. The best you can do is to seek out dialogue and find individual solutions for your employees to develop in an unrestricted manner. You should also give your students and recent graduates the opportunity to share problems or suggestions with you early on. This creates a relationship founded on trust which can serve as the basis for a long-term working relationship.