The workforce is changing. Millennials are no longer the “new” talent, they are THE talent, making up the largest generation in the workplace today. In addition, a recent study shows that 61 million Gen Zers (people born after 1996) are about to enter the workforce.

That means the talent pool is getting younger and it’s time for us to keep up. Keeping and supporting young talent means understanding exactly what they want in a career.

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Here are some tips for attracting and retaining young talent:

Find Ways to Add Value

While higher wages are an obvious place to add value for young employees, there are many ways to incentivize them beyond their paycheck. According to a recent study, approximately 20% of Millennials say they cannot afford their healthcare expenses and 46% of Gen Z say their main financial concern is student debt. Get creative with how you’re driving value for these younger generations. Offer better healthcare discounts or start a debt reimbursement program. Better yet, explore what an Employee Discount Program can do for you and your employees.

Offer Opportunities for Collaboration

While Millennials were coming of age with technology, Gen Z has become even more entrenched in social media and constant communication. Due to this change in atmosphere, collaboration is a key motivator for these younger employees. Surprisingly, however, they prefer in-person interactions over the phone, email or even texting when collaborating with co-workers.

Give Them Mentors, Not Managers

Micromanagement is the new smoking. Ok, ok, we made that up. But what we do know is that these younger generations are seeking out thriving relationships between their leaders. Mentorship is a hot topic among this crowd and that is only bound to increase as they take the workforce by storm. Maybe there’s a reason why 70% of multi-national companies are replacing their annual reviews in favor of performance management. Young talent wants specific feedback on their performance, and they don’t want to wait a year to receive it. In fact, studies show Millennials are receiving reviews either daily (19%), weekly (24%), or regularly (23%) versus the traditional annual format (3%).

Create a Culture That Matters

According to Gallup, Millennials turnover costs the U.S. economy $30.5 billion annually. Whoa. We’ve learned a lot from the Millennial workplace and there are many trends that are sure to stay. Flexible hours are considered one of the biggest perks for these employees. They also want a job that is willing to support their career development. They actually want to find a job and stay there, which is great news! As we previously discussed, regular reviews are a great way to focus on career progression and support. In addition to reviews, makes ure you also find time to recognize their efforts, whether it’s through a formal program or as simple as a thank-you note. These few efforts can make a huge difference for your retention as you create a culture that truly matters to your employees.

As we begin to wrap up another year, it will be interesting to see how Gen Z continues to shape our workforce well into 2019. How is your business working to keep and support your young talent?

About Katie Williamson

Katie Williamson is a Senior Marketing Associate at PerkSpot, providing creative insights and challenging the way we think about the workplace.

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