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Creating a Work Culture to Appeal to Gen Z

If you're looking for Gen Z employees, you've probably tailored your hiring strategies specifically for them. But have you thought about your work culture? These early in career workers are not like their older counterparts, and they have a very specific idea of the type of employer they want to work for—and won't settle for anything less. As a result, it's important to create a work culture that is appealing to this talent. The following are some tips to help you do it.

1. Prioritize Technology

The pandemic made it necessary for organizations to rely heavily on technology, but in a post-pandemic world, technology should not be regarded as merely a fad to be forgotten. Since Generation Z workers are so adept with technology—they've been using it their entire lives after all—it's important for your company to embrace a technology-driven work culture in order to attract them. In fact, technology is so important to this talent that they'll actually use it as a factor when deciding on whether or not to work for an organization.

With this in mind, you should make technology a huge part of your work environment—and demonstrate this to early talent as soon as possible. Using social media is a great way to set this precedent since you can engage with young professionals often and effortlessly, and you get the opportunity to meet them where they are. Also, use technology as much as possible during the hiring process, whether that means providing updates about candidates’ applications via text or interviewing them virtually. 

After candidates are hired, be sure to leverage technology during the onboarding and training process, as well as give new hires access to the technology tools that will help them perform their jobs most efficiently and effectively.

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2. Communicate Effectively

Since Gen Z has been using technology for so long, they’re accustomed to getting access to instant information, and they bring this expectation into their jobs. This means they want their supervisors to provide frequent reports about their job performance—and an annual review just won’t cut it. In fact, when these employees don’t get information about how they’re doing, they may assume that something is wrong, which can ultimately impact their work. To avoid this, be sure to give Gen Z employees regular feedback—both positive and negative—so they know what they're doing right, as well as what they need to improve.

Also, Gen Z talent wants a work culture that emphasizes face-to-face communication, despite how much they embrace technology. They want to build strong relationships with their colleagues and collaborate together, and they know that face-to-face communication is the best way to do it. So although you may give employees the opportunity to work remotely at times, be sure to build a lot of in-person collaboration into your work environment.

3. Offer Growth Opportunities

Generation Z has a reputation for job hopping, but that perception is not entirely fair. These workers are not willing to stay in a job that doesn’t fulfill them or provide opportunities for growth, but when they find a work culture that does give them what they need, they’re loyal employees who are easy to retain.

This means companies should not only create clear career paths for early in career professionals to follow, but also give them the training they need to move up the ladder of the organization. Also, offer coaching from those in managerial positions so these workers can receive informal training, as well as inspiration.

In addition, it’s important to allow early career talent to grow by giving them ownership of the work they do. After all, many Generation Z employees have already developed an entrepreneurial spirit before even getting their first job after college. According to a survey by Microsoft, 62 percent of Gen Zers have started their own business, or intend to, and 48 percent have multiple side hustles that they're juggling at once.

As a result, it's not surprising that this talent wants to work in an environment where they can take ownership of projects and really demonstrate what they're capable of. Although these employees do value collaborating in teams, they also like to work autonomously, so be sure to give them projects where they can take the lead and show off their skills.

Once you understand what early in career professionals want in a work culture, it's easier to ensure that your workplace appeals to this talent. Gen Z workers have very specific needs when they're looking for a job, so keep these tips in mind as you're recruiting so you can create an employer brand that these workers will be attracted to.

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