Keeping up with Gen Z: Hiring in the Age of Speed, Mobility & Instant Information

Recruiting Gen Z employees is essential to building a high-powered workforce—one that will serve employers well today and in the future. After all, by 2030, Gen Z will make up 30% of the workforce! To effectively recruit these up-and-coming movers and shakers, it’s key to know what makes them tick.

Gen Zers were born between 1997-2012, which means their lives have been shaped by the fast-paced, tech-driven 21st Century. The first true digital natives, they bring unique skills, values and expectations to the workforce.

Generally speaking, Gen Zers are well-educated, tech-savvy and perpetually connected. They have a world of data at their fingertips, which they can summon on demand. Many Gen Zers have a strong sense of social justice and environmentalism—yet are also pragmatists who value competitive salaries and career opportunities.

In other words, successfully recruiting Gen Z may require a slightly-different approach—including these strategies for appealing to and connecting with Gen Z talent.

Embrace Social-Media Based Recruiting

According to research, 54% of Gen Z spends four or more hours per day consuming social media. To reach them on their home turf, it’s essential that employers utilize social media effectively. That may mean expanding your social media presence in terms of job posts and employer branding, while showcasing your company culture in an engaging (but not overtly-promotional) manner.

Not quite there yet? Ironically, for some HR teams, the answer may be to hire a Gen Z staffer to help drive this process in an authentic way.


Deliver a High-Tech Hiring Experience

Gen Zers aren’t merely comfortable with technology, it’s their second language—one that they expect their employers to speak fluently. You may need to speed and streamline your online application process, while ensuring it’s all mobile-friendly. And use text messaging and video conferencing to communicate with candidates, along with traditional emails and phone calls.

In addition, when talking with Gen Z candidates, it’s smart to emphasize the technology you’re using in the workplace and highlight any innovative projects currently underway.

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Be Transparent with Applicants

Gen Z seeks authenticity and transparency from employers. Remember that they are experts at accessing information and can quickly ferret out when a company’s claims don’t align with its online footprint.

So when interviewing Gen Z, be ready to answer piercing questions honestly. And if you’re not practicing full pay transparency, now’s the time to up your game.


Show That You Care about Employees

While all generations seek caring employers, it’s especially important to Gen Z—the driving force behind the Great Resignation. As such, demonstrating that you take pains to safeguard employee well-being, prioritize work-life balance, and offer training and advancement opportunities will boost recruiting and retention rates, especially with Gen Z.


Emphasize Your Culture and Values

While most workers prefer to work for companies with established social and environmental values, it’s an even greater priority for Gen Z. For example, nearly two out of five young workers surveyed by Deloitte report declining a job because it didn’t align with their values.  

So make sure your corporate social responsibility (CSR) programs and initiatives are well represented online—where Gen Z applicants will surely seek them out.


Supercharge Your DEI Efforts    

Gen Z are strong proponents of diversity, equity, and inclusion—and they expect their employers to be, too. If your DEI initiatives could use some hardening, this is another good reason to accelerate your efforts, especially during the hiring process.

For example, 88% of Gen Zers believe that employers should ask for their preferred gender pronouns—although only 18% report having that experience. Food for thought for recruiters?


Offer Relocation Opportunities

Generally speaking, Gen Zers have a mobile mindset—and as such, may welcome corporate relocation opportunities.

For example, in one recent workforce mobility survey, Gen Z respondents said that they expected to live in 15 different homes during their lifetime while pursuing their professional and personal goals. And while older generations fled urban areas during the pandemic, Gen Z flocked to major U.S. cities.

That said, if your recruiting plan includes offering Gen Z relocation opportunities, be sure you’re using a modern, tech-based relocation solution—one that allows them to plan every step of their move online.

Because technology is paramount for these digital natives, an old-school relocation approach can’t begin to keep up with Gen Z!      



Human Resources Today