Mistakes To Avoid When Hiring Gen Z Workers
Gen Z is the new generation who are currently entering the workforce. They’re entrepreneurial, interested in achieving (but not at the expense of their mental health) and a decent work-life balance is the.
Using older technology
Gen Z was born and have grown up in a world where they have vast technological power at their fingertips. They’re naturally attuned to working with technology, are native to the digital world, and use technology for everything from making appointments to tracking their daily habits and feelings.
With this in mind, it makes sense that this subsect of the workforce would not just benefit from using this level of integrated tech in the workplace, they will expect it. If you can get a whole grocery order delivered in a matter of hours in major cities, why does it take weeks for HR processes to be carried out? These improvements in efficiency will benefit your whole workforce and make communication channels far clearer.
The shift from manual to digital is very well documented and the benefits are substantial for both employers and employees. Not least of all because digital paper trails are more reliable and many HR processes can be tracked, meaning that your Gen Z employee has a more involved view of their position within the company.
Forgetting about feedback
One of the most significant disparities between Gen Z and previous generations in the workplace is their need for continuous feedback on their performance. As mentioned, technology plays a major role in Gen Z’s workplace expectations.
Improved technology has allowed Gen Z access to constant communication and instant feedback in their personal lives through avenues such as social media and text messages. As a result, communication and feedback are also important factors in the workplace for this generation and the millennial worker, too.
In fact, according to a generational study conducted in 2018, 66% of Gen Z need feedback from their supervisor at least every couple of weeks or more to stay at their job.
If you’re looking to retain Gen Z employees long-term you will need to offer more than annual reviews as these employees thrive in environments where they have an open channel of communication with team members and co-workers on a regular basis. A good option is to invest in performance management software that allows you to continuously assess your employee’s performance, check in on goals, and offer rewards and recognition for their achievements. Offering this continued support is a great way to improve company culture and employee engagement.
Focusing on what rather than why
Offering in-depth information about what your employees will actually be doing on the job is an integral part of the hiring process, however, for Gen Z candidates, it’s not enough to simply know what they’re doing — they want to also know why. Then why is just as important as the what because this age group wants to work in a meaningful, progressive atmosphere. So much so that almost 30% of the Gen Z’ers surveyed by Robert Half would take a 10–20% pay cut if it meant that they could work for a company with a mission they cared about deeply or a company with strong Corporate Social Responsibility policies.
It’s key to highlight your company’s commitment to social issues and to shout about the work you do which contributes to society, outside of the company improvement itself.
Overlooking the value of flexibility
Flexibility is the buzzword of the year across all industries. While flexible working was becoming more and more popular, even pre-pandemic, since the world went into lockdown in March 2020 more and more companies had to implement remote working, with very little preparation.
While remote working may be the first thing that springs to mind when you consider flexibility in a workplace, it could also mean a hybrid working model, enhanced healthcare, improved training budgets, or the opportunity for candidates to volunteer their time as part of their job. There is no one size fits approach to flexible working and it’s worth taking the time to find out what candidates find most beneficial and valuable.
It’s certainly true that Gen Z value work-life balance and that this is an important consideration when changing employers. Flexibility came out as the most important benefit, above competitive pay, healthcare, and other perks such as Netflix subscriptions, gym memberships, and more.
Ensure there is no prejudice or bias in your hiring strategy
Another mistake to avoid when recruiting millennial or Gen Z candidates are recruiting based on personal interests, preferences, or bias. All hiring should be based solely on merit, abilities, or skill. Basing a hiring decision on anything else — race, gender, sexuality, age, or political views amongst other biases, is prejudiced and will likely lead to the workforce with no diversity — something that the next generation of workers find to be extremely important.
When interviewing, don’t allow first impressions to impair your judgment of the interview, and try to stay impartial throughout. It’s important to have the same interview style for all candidates and if you have tests, make sure these are all the same too.
Despite no two individuals being the same, generational similarities do exist. This age group and generation are the most connected, one of the biggest advocates for mental health, and one of the least judgmental of recent years. Understanding their motivations and what makes them tick will be highly beneficial for HR professionals and business owners when trying to attract and retain this emerging workforce.
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Originally published at Upstack.co on Jan 30, 2022, by Joanna Blomfield.