RecruitersHR good practiceFocus on the talented people of tomorrow: How companies convince Gen Z in recruiting

Focus on the talented people of tomorrow: How companies convince Gen Z in recruiting

  • Friday, September 29, 2023
  • Noémie Baudouin

Generation Z has new expectations in terms of recruitment. Here's how to convince them to join you with a strong employer brand and effective practices.

If anyone is clearly winning in the war for talent, it is Gen Z. Young professionals are aware of the shortage of skilled workers and are choosing their employers according to their own wishes and needs. When recruiting, companies that want to retain promising employees must therefore carefully consider how appropriate measures can be successfully integrated into the overall strategy. 

A personal approach to recruiting is credible and informative

In a report, jointly undertaken by ACCA and IFAC (International Federation of Accountants), Gen Z are worried about the well-beign as a major concern and they are attracted to organisations that support their mental health and offer a good work-life balance.  Therefore, the relationship with recruiters plays a major role for Gen Z when it comes to deciding on the right job. Pleasant personal conversations remain in the candidates' memory, promote the company's reputation and often deliver the decisive impulse that determines whether candidates apply or not. 

Digital channels allow you to connect with your target group, provide them with useful information and present your corporate culture in a credible way:

  • More than 80 percent of people in Gen Z would like to be contacted by e-mail about suitable jobs. When choosing the channels you use to approach talent online, do not forget this classic route.
  • In business networks like LinkedIn, you meet Gen Z directly in a professional context. A study by LinkedIn shows how effective recruiting is there: 89 % of talent says being contacted by their recruiter can make them accept a job offer faster.
  • People in Gen Z spend a lot of their free time on social media. With your own presence on Instagram and Facebook, you can also reach passive job seekers there and draw their attention to your offers. Be open to new formats and the possibilities of the individual platforms, and also show your company from the non-serious side. Young colleagues from your team can support you in this.
  • On some social media platforms, however, students insist on separating professional and private matters. WhatsApp, Twitter, Spotify, YouTube and Snapchat are usually used for personal matters. We therefore recommend limiting your recruiting strategy to Instagram, Facebook, and LinkedIn.

Offer the Gen Z guidance through university marketing 

Despite their pronounced affinity with the Internet, Gen Z places great value on physical interaction. For them, online contact is only a means of initiating human contact more quickly and in a more targeted manner, but it is by no means a substitute for it. Therefore, show the faces of your company at fairs, school and university visits and enter into a personal conversation with job seekers. 

The dos at job and career fairs:

  • Interactive content you can touch: Practical exercises include job interviews or insights into the everyday work of different professions from your own employees.
  • Lectures and workshops by employees from the target group help to build relationships.
  • Give-aways such as pens, notepads, snacks and drinks go down well with the ambitious Gen Z. 

Recruiting must be smart, fast and efficient

For Generation Z, the application process must be quick and easy. This works best via a smartphone, something that almost all digital natives have with them every day. More than half of the candidates prefer a mobile application to a traditional one. And after just a few hours without any feedback, they will think about applying to another company. So what can you do to meet the young generation's need for speed and mobility? We recommend: 

  • Optimise your career portal and job advertisements for mobile devices.
  • Follow the click path and check whether candidates can apply in a smooth and seamless manner with a smartphone. Few will be able to fill in forms on a small screen. Career networks provide a remedy: with the help of links, candidates can export and send their CVs.
  • Strive for a short response time. According to our survey, 90% of young people find it important to receive a reply to their application even if it is pre-recorded. 
  • Particularly with large numbers of applicants, tools that automate the recruitment process relieve the HR department. In our tool overview, you will find some useful recruiting solutions.
  • If possible, go without a covering letter. This not only lowers the hurdle to an application, but also saves the time you would have needed to read that covering letter. At the same time, you get more freedom to test the suitability of candidates in a personal digital interview and shorten the recruitment process.

Recruiting - and then? What Gen Z wants from working life

Once the recruitment process has been mastered and a talented young person has been integrated into the company, both sides begin to analyse the situation. “Is the employer a good fit for me?” “Does he keep his promises?” These are the questions that preoccupy Gen Z. But what can companies do to make junior staff feel comfortable at work? Here are their most important requirements for working life:

  • Work-life balance with clearly defined working hours: Gen Z is less willing to work overtime or take on leadership responsibilities and likes to keep their private and professional lives separate. 
  • Self-realisation through further education: Coaching, workshops or job rotations motivate Gen Z and promote loyalty to a company. 
  • Socially meaningful and creative work are particularly appealing to Gen Z. 
  • Secure employment through permanent contracts are another plus point in recruiting. 

In conclusion, those who understand the needs can respond to them

Three factors define Gen Z recruiting: a personal approach, honesty and speed in the entire hiring cycle. Show that you are authentic, and approach these talented young people via online channels to get to know them better. With mobile optimisation and short response times, you will definitely score points with these prospective new recruits.

In our white paper ‘Recruiters beware: with these tips, you can win talented people over to your company’, you will learn how to attract talented young people, network with them and recruit them more efficiently in just a few steps.

Download White paper