Is your company attracting millennial talent?


As Australia’s ageing workforce begins to retire, many businesses will be looking increasingly towards young workers to fill gaps in talent. According to McCrindle Research, Gen Y, also known as millennials and referring to those born between the early 1980’s and late 1990’s, currently make up 21 per cent of the Australian workforce but are expected to make up 35 per cent by 2020.

Having grown up in a digital and interconnected world with increased opportunities for travel and work, these young workers unsurprisingly have different expectations regarding their employers and work environments. If employers want to replace their retiring workers with the best and brightest millennials, they must understand what it takes to attract, recruit and retain them.

Role of technology

Gen Y has come of age surrounded by technology and has become accustomed to the rapidly changing technological environment. This young work force is looking for employers who can help them increase their tech skills and who openly embrace emerging technologies.

Recruitment software can help attract tech-savvy millennials from the get-go.

In a recent survey by Robert Walters Recruitment, 94 per cent of millennials reported that technology was important to their work and 51 per cent said that they would leave their company if it did not invest in emerging technologies.

By demonstrating to young workers straight off the bat that their company is up to date with technology, organisations can have a better chance at attracting a wider range of talent. Using cloud-based recruitment software can be one such way to indicate to millennials that an organisation is tech-friendly.

More training

According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, the rate of Australians receiving tertiary education has been on the rise since 1996. But while millennials may be well educated, they lack the skills necessary to be successful in the workplace and are looking for employers to train them in these skills.

According to a BDO survey of Australian 18-29 year olds, 64 per cent believed that universities were not adequately preparing students for the workplace while 82 per cent said they believed that Australian businesses should be doing more to train students for the workforce.

Relating this desire for training specifically to technology, a recent report by Infosys on young workers found that 63 per cent of respondents from around the world agreed that technological skills were important for their future careers. By embracing digitalisation and innovative technologies, companies have a better chance at retaining young workers who are eager and willing to learn about them.

Movers and shakers

The new generation of workers is looking for career progression and opportunities abroad when considering employers. Robert Walters Recruitment found that 67 per cent of millennials considered potential for career progression as an important factor for them when choosing an employer.

The median job tenure for Gen Y is only two years in comparison with the baby boomer median of seven years.

With regards to travel, according to BDO, 55 per cent of current Australian tertiary students have already worked abroad or are looking to do so in the future, demonstrating Gen Y’s desire to obtain new experiences through work.

How might the millennial desire for moving upwards and around the globe affect HR? If employers can’t keep up with Gen Y’s relatively high expectations for progression and opportunities, they can expect that these young workers will move on after a short period of time.

According to a Payscale survey, the median job tenure for Gen Y is only two years in comparison with seven years for baby boomers.

As recruitment begins to focus more on the millennial generation, HR departments will begin to feel pressure to keep up with the high rate of turnover as young workers are hired on and leave for new jobs all in the span of a few years. Seeking out integrated recruitment software can be one way that employers prepare themselves for the increased volume of hiring that will come with getting millennials on board.

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