How Employers Should Prepare for Generation Z

Employers have been working with Millennial students for quite a few years, however, are you ready for Generation Z?  Generation Z is the new generation of students  coming out of college in the next 4-5 years and beginning to enter the workforce.  They were born between 1995-2012, so many of the Generation Zs are 21 years old already.  We want to help employers who feel challenged with figuring out how to prepare for the newest generation of employees entering the workforce. This article shares information and tips to help employers with Generation Z.

 Some of the characteristics of Generation Z (also known as iGen or Centennials) include:

  • More self aware than previous generations
  • Innovative
  • Goal oriented
  • Self-reliant
  • “Cloud Natives” – they are always on the look out for new technology
  • Strong multitasking abilities

Generation Z is considered the first generation of “Cloud Natives.”  They search, compare, and comment on conveniences using their mobile devises at any time and from any location.  They are more diverse and have shorter attention spans than Millennials, so employers will want to use multiple marketing methods to reach generation Z.

Traits of Generation Z:

  • More entrepreneurial than other generations
  • Less money-driven than Millennials
  • Prefer more traditional methods of communication (face-to-face)
  • Want employers to be honest and take them seriously
  • Need frequent feedback to show that you care
  • Want to work individually: given individual tasks and judged by their own qualities
  • Have clear career goals and tend to stay with a company longer than Millennials

How to Recruit Gen Z:  Create A Personalized, Authentic, Candidate Experience

  • Employers should know your market and be very targeted with your recruitment strategies for Generation Z.
  • Use a different approach at every college you recruit and design a targeted strategy.
  • Identify social media champions at your organization and use them as role models or spokes people for your organization.
  • Try to reach students through Twitter and Instagram as well as face-to-face through alumni who work for your organization.
  • Tell your company’s story authentically through blogs and other social media such as Instagram.  (This helps Generation Z students picture themselves working for the organization in the future.)
  • Let students post pictures of themselves working with a client, at a networking event, lunch with colleagues and while working at their internship with your organization.

Generation Z as Employees

Once they are hired, employers should offer Generation Z employees freedom for thought, flexibility, and autonomy.  From time to time, have a private face-to-face meeting to find out their strengths, goals, and innovative ideas.   Gen Z students may have strong needs related to security since they were influenced by the events of 9/11 and the Great Recession growing up, but because of this they are less likely to switch jobs as often as the Millennial generation.

Contact Amy Lane, Fusion Director and Principal Investigator at the Minnesota State IT Center of Excellence at Amy.Lane@metrostate.edu for more information.

Sign up to gain access to resources, post internships and jobs, and view resumes of IT students.

IT Connect is an online career management system powered by the Minnesota State IT Center of Excellence.  The system connects Minnesota students, faculty and employers to IT resources, trends, internships, full-time jobs, career fairs, workshops, FUSION residencies, events and more.

Employers! To gain access to the Gen Z infographic, view resumes of candidates, and post jobs simply:

  1. Click above to sign up or login on IT Connect (click on employer)
  2. Infographic: Locate and select “Document Library” on your dashboard menu- for infographic document
  3. You can also view resumes and post jobs in the IT Connect system.  Just click on the top tabs.

And that’s all — it’s that easy!