In our last blog post we spoke about how technology is changing long standing rules on the way that we work and what this means for the workplace in the future.
However there is a new generation entering the work place making arguably more influential waves than AI and Zoom – Gen Z.
Born between 1997 and 2012, they are expected to account for 27% of the workforce by 2025. As employers seek to attract and retain the next Gen(eration) of talent, they are having to take into consideration a new set of values, motivating factors and incentives.
They are the first digital generation to grow up with no memory of life before the internet. They have never rented a Blockbuster video, played a CD player, read a paper map or used a floppy disk.
Named the “first global generation,” Gen Z are growing up in a society where global content and information are freely available, and where one-click shopping for goods with same day delivery from anywhere in the world and having 700 TV channels is taken for granted.
According to the Yello Recruiting Study, email is Gen Z’s number-one choice to communicate with potential employers. But while email is still king when it comes to sharing marketing materials, scheduling interviews, and coordinating offer letters, a healthy mix of many communication channels might be the key to winning over talent. A growing number of Gen Z candidates also rank text messaging as a favourite way to connect with employers
These are the most important Gen Z communication preferences to keep in mind throughout the recruiting process:
· Keep it Speedy - 17% of Gen Z job seekers expect an offer less than a week after the first interview. Cut down on time-to-hire and provide frequent updates throughout the hiring process.
· Use a multi channel approach - Gen Z may rank email #1, but they still expect recruiters to connect with them through a variety of different communication channels.
· Face to face - 51% of Gen Z job seekers prefer face-to-face communication, and want to form trusted relationships with their recruiters.
While salary is still the most important factor in deciding on a job, Gen Z values salary less than every other generation. Given a choice of accepting high salaried, boring job versus work that was more interesting but didn’t pay as well, Gen Z was evenly split over the choice.
Some 42% of Gen Z workers value work-life balance, remote working and flexible leave as their top priorities when looking for a job and can change jobs up to 10 times between the ages of 18 and 34. The old concept of a career ladder running from the mailroom to the Director board could be replaced by something much more ad hoc and flexible.
Diversity and inclusion matter a lot to Gen Z.
86% of Gen Z job seekers cite a company’s commitment to diversity as an important factor in deciding whether or not to accept an offer.
More than two-thirds would be reluctant to accept an offer if they didn’t meet any underrepresented employees during the interview process.
Once hired, 78% would consider finding a new job if they found their employer wasn’t committed to diversity in the workplace.
They also want their employer to care about the environment. They seek evidently sustainable companies, both to work for and buy from. This could start a shift in companies’ mindsets, marketing and strategies. And actions speak louder than words: Companies must demonstrate their commitment to a broader set of societal challenges such as sustainability and climate change
Every new generation changes the world of work, from the influx of women into the workforce to the way Millennials raised awareness of issues like mental health. But Gen Zs are coming of age in the wake of a historic pandemic and at a time when the climate emergency poses an unprecedented threat to humanity. What they look for at work – and what they will not accept – is likely to have enduring repercussions.