How Millennials Use Research in their Job Search
By: Catherine Conlan
During their job search, Millennials are looking for more than just a peek behind the curtain at a prospective employer — they want real-life examples of what it’s like to work there, so they can figure out whether they’d be a good fit.
For example, a Millennial job-seeker may scan a company’s website, read articles about it in the media, research its ratings on employee-ranking websites and check out employees on business networking sites as part of the job search, says Leeyen Rogers, 25, vice president of marketing at JotForm in San Francisco.
“We look at where exactly the office is located, to check up on commute time, and maybe even if we can bike there.”
How do Millennials Research Prospective Employers?
Millennials want the inside scoop, making them more likely to want to speak to current employees and check out employment review websites as part of the job search, says Thomas Handcock, HR practice leader for CEB, a best practice insight and tech company based in Arlington, Virginia.
Millennials look to online resources that provide insights into jobs, companies, salaries, interviews and reviews from candidates who have interviewed with specific companies for specific jobs, says Lesley Mitler, co-founder of Early Stage Careers in New York City, which specializes in career coaching for recent college grads.“Millennials are also attracted to websites that combine job postings, career advice and behind the scenes look at the corporate culture along with people who work at the company,” says Mitler.
Listen to this Monster Hiring podcast to hear how today's Millennials conduct their job search.
Social Media is Part of their Research
Companies working to recruit Millennials should check their social media feeds: While Millennials spend less time researching employers before deciding whether to apply — 12.4 hours compared to 25.9 hours for the older generations in today’s workplace — they’re more likely to use social media and mobile devices to look for information during a job search, according to Handcock.
Additionally, adds Rogers, corporate social media profiles can give a strong indication of a company’s brand — it’s goals and values as well as a sense of its corporate culture.
“Companies that Instagram or otherwise share photos of office life, extracurricular work activities, and employees hanging out together after the 9-to-5,” have an edge in recruiting Millennials, Rogers says.
What Type of Information are Millennials Seeking?
If your company is looking to use its corporate social media accounts to provide information that Millennials want, consider highlighting these three key qualities:
1) Professional Development Opportunities
“Early on in our careers, we need opportunities to learn new skills, grow, and further our professional goals,” Rogers says. Real-life case studies that show how young employees have grown at your company can showcase the opportunities you have to offer.
Millennials consider a company’s values as essential information, Rogers says. Job seekers want to know whether employers value their employees as unique members of the organization, with their own needs, ideas, and personalities. They’re looking for values that show they’ll have time to develop new skills and excel at their jobs.
Millennials are looking for a second home at the office, not just a desk where they can get their jobs done, Rogers says. They often desire a company culture where they can be productive and happy in offices that are homey, inspired and fun. Your social media accounts can demonstrate that by sharing office scenes of a typical day at work.
Remember to Keep It Real
Jeremy Schifeling, CEO of Break Into Tech, recommends employers go beyond the typical laundry list of perks when showcasing their employment opportunities to Millennials. Savvy employers will share behind-the-scenes videos and examples of their culture in action, such as annual events, company traditions and so on.
To generate the authenticity that Millennials are looking for, Handcock says employers need to go beyond surface-level sales pitches. Work with your recruiter to craft a job description that is real and helpful to candidates, he says. Promote it through social media and other channels, and ensure that you’re thinking about the Millennial perspective as much as your own.
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