Gain a hiring edge: Learn today about the needs, wants of tomorrow’s workforce.
Today’s teenagers and college students will be tomorrow’s job candidates and employees. In your efforts to appeal to this demographic and understand how they might fit in with your organization, take a look at the class of 2016. Their habits, attitudes, interests, and philosophies speak volumes about the newest generation of American workers.
First of all, realize that this is the most tech savvy generation ever because:
· Their lives have always been digital and web-based.
· They watch a lot of TV, but little of it on an actual television. They are attached to their portable devices.
· They grew up in a post-videotape era. They only know DVDs and CDs.
· Many use earbuds and headphones to listen to music, and many will see hearing loss at a much younger age.
· They have never seen a paper airline ticket, and the idea of paying bills or shopping online or via app is second nature.
· They’ve never owned or even used a bound encyclopedia.
The class of 2016 is considered to be the most “tribal” generation in history, and their “tribe” is built around their friends. They thrive on contact with similar-age acquaintances. They have their own fashion sense. Exposed bra straps are a fashion “do,” not a mistake. Most young women have never owned or worn a pair of pantyhose or stockings.
This generation is comfortable seeing and interacting with women in leadership; and it would never occur to them to accept that they couldn’t pursue any job or challenge because of gender.
Patience may not be this generation’s strong suit. They have lived their entire lives in a world of “instant stardom” and easy celebrity. They have been led to believe that anyone can be famous and that a wealthy lifestyle is easily attainable.
To appeal to the class of 2016 and their contemporaries, be prepared to:
· Stress the cutting-edge technology that they will use at your organization. Share your company’s plans to upgrade and expand on high-tech tools over time.
· Make sure that they have access to and interaction with same-age peers on the job. Consider partnering them with mentors who are closer to their age.
· Discuss opportunities for advancement and a timeline for these. Help them understand what steps they will need to take to advance.
· Engage them as high-tech ambassadors to help staff and residents alike use technology. For instance, have them conduct computer classes for residents and lead training programs for staff. Seek their input on new technology and tools that might be useful for their work.
· Consider ways to enable them to express their individuality via their attire, even if there are strict dress codes.