What Millennials Can Bring to Your Business

Gallup’s 2016 report, “How Millennials Want to Work and Live,” puts numbers to the suspicions we’ve had all along – millennials are altering the status quo.

Millennials hold strongly, more than previous generations, the belief that work has to be more than a paycheck; it has to have real-life value, and millennials aren’t finding the value in many jobs today. Reports Gallup, “Millennials have the highest rates of unemployment and underemployment in the U.S., and only 29% of employed millennials are engaged at work.”

Should businesses take notice? Does this discontent among millennial workers matter?

Yes, says Gallup, “Because the strength of the marketplace and workplace depend on what the millennial generation can accomplish. If millennials cannot find good jobs, the economy will continue to lag. If they are not engaged in those jobs, companies’ profitability, productivity and innovation will suffer. And if they are not thriving in their well-being, they will struggle in life, affecting how they perform as citizens, consumers and employees.”

How can businesses increase engagement among millennials? And what can an engaged millennial workforce bring to your business?

Gallup’s #1 take-away for businesses was that millennials want to do meaningful work. That’s a great quality. A working-for-the-weekend mentality may lead to more pacified employees (since a paycheck is all they expect from a job), but when workers want more than that – when they want to really believe in the work they’re doing – a good fit will mean a powerful workforce.

What are your company’s big-picture goals? How do workers in every department on every level contribute to these goals? How can employees find success in your company? How can they grow and develop and become increasingly instrumental in fulfilling these larger goals and purposes? Give millennial workers answers to these questions, and watch engagement levels increase.

Millennials want purpose and opportunities for growth in a company, and they want plenty of communication and training along the way. This can also be a huge benefit to businesses.  Regular communication throughout every level of a company can help all employees stay engaged.  Rather than yearly or quarterly reviews from managers, millennials are looking to be part of a team. They want consistent feedback, suggestions for growth, and increasing opportunities for work that coincides with their strengths. Millennials want to believe in what you’re doing, in what they are doing alongside you.

Stereotypes of the millennial generation usually point out a lacking work ethic, self-centeredness, or an addiction to mobile devices. Gallup’s report showed that millennials are sick of talking about their weaknesses, and want to put their strengths to work for businesses.  Mobile adeptness, for example, can be of huge benefit to companies today. Let your workers weigh in on marketing decisions, social media usage, the company website, online application and on boarding processes, and company culture.

Gallup’s report summary concludes, “More so than ever in the history of corporate culture, employees are asking, ‘Does this organization value my strengths and my contribution? Does this organization give me the chance to do what I do best every day?’ Because for millennials, a job is no longer just a job — it’s their life as well.”
Companies wanting an engaged millennial workforce would be wise to consider these issues and make appropriate changes.  Millennials want to bring their life to your business – they want to believe in what you’re doing and use their strengths to work with you. That is of great benefit to any company.

Prioritizing Jobs for Hiring

Which positions should take priority in company hiring? While the answer to this question varies from business to business and industry to industry, we’ve outlined for you five points to consider when endeavoring to systematically fill open positions.

1. Study your organizational structure.

 

Looking at a visual map of employees and their charges can help you decide which positions are most critical to fill. Priority does not necessarily fall to the highest position. Perhaps it is a lower-level manager whose absence is most disruptive. Maybe one position can be temporarily covered by existing employees without much hardship, but another position left open is far too taxing on the remaining workforce.

And don’t forget about non-management openings. A company rests on the many entry-level positions at the bottom of the chart. Put off hiring open positions here for too long, and your company begins to crumble.

2. Consider the bottom line, greatest revenue lost or gained.

How much is a particular vacancy costing your company? There are a variety of vacancy calculators available to companies, based on sales quotas or total company revenue. The higher up the position, the more it costs a company to keep it vacant. Revenue can also be lost in less tangible ways when unfilled positions start to wear away at the creative vision and momentum of a leadership team, resulting in deflated company culture.

3. Divide time between easy-to-fill and hard-to-fill positions.

Are there positions open in your company that are relatively simple to fill? Rather than spending all of your time searching for candidates for those hard-to-fill positions, divide and conquer. Dedicate part of the day to housekeeping – chipping away at the regular influx of resumes, interviews, and onboarding procedures that are essential for basic company functioning.  Block out another portion of the day for upper-level or other more complex positions. Both tasks are necessary, and while it is tempting to devote days to chasing down stars for your C-suite team, time must be given to more-standard hires, as well.

If splitting your efforts is not working, consider contracting with a recruitment agency for upper-level, time-intensive hires; this allows you to keep your business running smoothly and also ensures that the necessary time and attention are being given to big hires.

4. Let the size of your company influence your decision.

The needs of a startup vary greatly from the needs of a large, well-established corporation. If you don’t have an office administrator available to answer the phone and coordinate product delivery, it would be unwise to make the hire of another high-level manager/visionary top priority.  Larger companies can often be more flexible, prioritizing hires according to current company goals, which leads to our next point.

5. Look at company-wide goals to discern whether you need to focus on growth or maintenance.
Is your company currently succeeding in meeting product demand with efficient, quality supply? If so, perhaps hiring focus should shift to areas of potential growth and development. This could look like hiring a creative director, adding to your marketing team, or bringing a previously-contracted department in-house. Companies who are, on the other hand, dissatisfied with basic product-development/product-sales functions may want to pour their efforts into building and maintaining their current workforce.

How to Become a Superstar Recruiter

Networks can be built, systems can be learned, information can be memorized, and anyone can print “Recruiter” on a business card. But superstar recruiters are made of more than facts and LinkedIn profiles. Here are three qualities that set great recruiters apart.

Perceptive

Superstar recruiters can read people. They look beyond basic profiles, resumes, and job descriptions and work to facilitate quality business-candidate matches. Beginning with a company’s job opening, recruiters look at the culture of a company and the heart of the position advertised. Multiple candidates – who may appear identically qualified on paper – can then be understood by a perceptive recruiter to be a fit (or not) for the opening.

Perception is similarly useful when working with passive candidates. Recruiters have to be able to see the potential behind the “passive” label.

Active candidates and companies may both include in resumes or job descriptions, respectively, an extensive list of necessary components for a job or employee. Perceptive recruiters will dig beneath the surface-level paperwork and get at the real priorities driving each party. They will be able to detect when companies are fishing for a unicorn candidate or when candidates are being unrealistically choosy in their search for a dream job.

The perceptive recruiter is also valued for his or her ability to walk gracefully through any sticky business situations or problems that come up during the hiring process. You know a recruiter is a superstar when he or she uses his or her skills at observing and reading people and circumstances to communicate carefully and wisely at all times.

Honest

A superstar recruiter does not have a long history of angry, discontent businesses and candidates.  Novice recruiters can fall into the trap of promising more than is possible to deliver, or of letting greed force them into ethically-questionable positions. But not the superstar recruiter. He or she will be honest and upfront with both businesses and candidates about cost, timelines, availability, and reasonable expectations.

Great recruiters honestly care about people.  They are salesmen without being salesmen, knowing how to sell a position to a candidate without mistreating business or candidate for their own gain.  Recruiters are good at their job because they have a genuine interest in people; they are honestly concerned with helping businesses and candidates find one another. Oftentimes you will find a superstar recruiter “recruiting” in everyday, out-of-office life, enjoying the “work” of meeting, remembering, and making connections with people.  

Self-motivated

Great recruiters don’t need companies pressuring them to ensure they are giving full effort to locating talent; they will represent a company well, working diligently to sell open positions to qualified candidates. This self-motivation also makes them excellent problem solvers, responding to roadblocks with determination and creativity.
Recruiting is constantly changing, meaning a great recruiter has to be self-motivated enough to stay on top of new trends and technologies in the field. Getting behind in training can quickly render a recruiter useless. Superstar recruiters are disciplined, always ready to put new skills and technology to use for their companies.

Recruitment is Marketing: Are You Ready for That?

Recruiting has changed in big ways.

John Syed, for LinkedIn, describes the role of recruiters a decade ago; “Recruiters received a daily cascade of candidates who covered the full spectrum of capabilities. You could post a job for CEO and get entry level resumes sent to you. Of the hundreds of thousands of applicants per job posting, recruiters had to manually sift through paper resumes, color coding them along the way and marking them fail, hold or progress.”

Sourcing candidates was done manually, making it a time-consuming, tedious process.

Today, businesses can post a job opening online, and technology has made it feasible to automatically filter through thousands of resumes from candidates all over the world.

But rather than rendering recruiting obsolete, new technology has opened up new space for professional recruiters; namely, marketing.

Karyn Mullins with Fox Business explains,“The biggest change in recruiting over the last 10 years? Employers don’t have complete power over the job search. A decade ago, it was applicants who had to show off their talents, but the tables have turned. Employers must now focus on drawing in top talent by competing the way candidates are used to.”

Recruitment today is marketing. It’s selling an opening in a company to potential candidates through company branding, advertising, interviewing, and closing. Thinking like a marketer can help recruiters do their job well.

Tanya Williams, writing for RecruitLoop, explains, “Your job as a recruiter is to turn an applicant into a hire, just like converting a marketing lead into a sale.”

Companies are now competing with other companies across the nation and around the world. What makes your company special? Why should candidates take this position over a comparable position with another company? Recruiters today need to be able to answer those questions. They need to be marketing professionals, helping businesses develop and broadcast their image, and working to sell that image to qualified candidates.

Since technology has made applications global, recruiters have to be able to conduct their marketing virtually. The same skills that made recruiters great ten and twenty years ago – networking, communication, organization – are still crucial to success today, but recruiters must be willing to adapt.  Social media, online job sites, and mobile applications are impossible to ignore, and should be both understood and put to good use.

Candidates today are often sold on a job when they are attracted to the company’s culture. Marketing open positions requires, then, the ability to effectively display company culture, usually through social media platforms and company websites. Candidates want a taste of what it would be like to work for a particular business – what the work environment is like, what is most valued, and whether or not they will be able to achieve a satisfactory work-life balance. That’s the product a recruiter is selling.

Skilled, experienced recruiters have adapted to the changing times. They bring the strengths that have long made hiring professionals valuable to businesses – excellent networking abilities and communication skills – and with these the added understanding of how to best handle today’s technology-inundated job market.
Great recruiters understand that recruitment is marketing, and they will work hard to sell positions within your company to today’s top talent.