On the Beyond Labels miniseries we discussed a range of diversity topics. In episode 4 we were joined by Rachel Spero, an Account Executive at Gartner, to discuss how companies can bring on next generation talent. Rachel shared her experience of being part of the Gen Z workforce, explaining what misconceptions employers have about her age group. Read on for her insights. 

How do you believe companies should approach recruiting Gen Z talent?

Stereotypically, Gen Z cares about things like independence, autonomy, self direction and freedom. We also want to have our voice heard. I think at any company you’ll go into an entry level job straight away, and you can’t expect to run the business from the get go, or have any of your ideas to be implemented at the top. That’s not what I expected at all. But what I did want from my company was to be valued. 

Because there are more conversations around mental health and work-life balance now, there’s more importance placed on the human side of work than there ever has been, especially by younger generations who are growing up with those expectations. Companies need to recognise that and promote it. 

I would recommend that companies who are looking to hire new talent communicate their purpose and the human centricity of their culture on digital platforms. So I think I speak for myself and a lot of people, when we’re looking for jobs, when I say that younger people go to social media sites like LinkedIn during our job search, so using digital recruitment channels is another key element to attracting Gen Z. 

What would be the top three benefits that stand out to you as Gen Z talent?

The things that always stand out as a sign of a good company are things like health insurance, wellbeing stipends and mental health support. Having an internal team to take care of your people is really important to me. 

What are the biggest misconceptions that companies might have about the next generation of talent?

One of the biggest misconceptions is that Gen Z is a little bit entitled, lazy, or we just want nice things. That’s a really huge misconception. I think Gen Z is much more aware of having a healthy work-life balance, which wasn’t necessarily possible before. I think that just comes from an awareness of these topics. We know now that productivity comes from having a good and healthy work life balance, so it’s a bonus for employees and employers. For companies that are looking to kind of mitigate that misconception, it’s important to have really clear communication with your employees around what their goals and aspirations are and how they want to achieve them, then work together to map out a plan of how they’re going to achieve that. 

To learn more from Rachel, tune in to Episode 4 of the Beyond Labels miniseries here

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