How to Get Millennials in the Workforce Hired


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The job market for millennials is more competitive than ever before. Over the last decade, the unemployment rate has been on a steady decline and is at an all time low of 4.9 percent according to Bureau of Labor Statistics. However, millennials are still having the hardest time finding jobs.

How can the ‘Net Generation’ beat the odds and secure decent paying jobs in today’s market? This is a great opportunity for career counselors to show their grit while helping this unique generation of go-getters find their place in the workforce.

Millennials are generally recognized for having two abilities their predecessors have not: positivity and an above average capability to use technology. Since employers hope to add these two qualities to their team when hiring a millennial, it is your job to show how your job-seeker exhibits both of these traits and more.

Here are three tips to tip off employers to your millennial candidate and land them that job:

Show Some Enthusiasm

Millennials are reported to have a happier outlook on life than any other previous generation, according to the 2016 Deloitte Millennial Survey, which surveyed almost 7,700 millennials in 29 countries around the world. This is appealing to employers because a new, positive presence in the workplace can do wonders for the rapport of a business. So how can you appropriately display that the applicant is happy-go-lucky and eager to work, but still very professional?

Get them to show their excitement through their rhetoric and words in emails. Despite the built in excitement behind exclamation points, make sure they use them very sparingly. The overuse of exclamation points can appear very unprofessional to employers.

Also, help them show their excitement through proving their interest in the company. Have your job-seeker do some in-depth research on the company prior to communicating with them. A great way to be noticed by the employer is by asking a pertinent question that research could not answer, such as inquiring a way in which their company might be approaching a new and modern industry trend.

Exploit Technological Skills

Stereotypes can either help or harm and one in particular has a tendency to do both for millennials. That presumption is that they all have advanced IT skills and is a stereotype that is unique to millennials in today’s talent search.

It’s true, millennials have grown up with technology that frequently evolved in their lifetime, forcing them to adapt with it, so they have naturally had more experience with technology than any other generation before them. But they can’t all be Mark Zuckerbergs.

Most employers today expect their employees to have basic computer skills such as typing, Microsoft applications and knowledge of common internet search engines. While applicants don’t have to be IT experts, employers at least want to see that they are more knowledgeable and able than not only their currently employed predecessors, but also their peers.  

Have your candidate show off their ability with technology in a way that will benefit the company. Show this through an interactive resume that includes samples projects that are most relevant to the job posting, or would be the most appealing to the specific business or industry. Many candidates now have their own websites that act as resumes. Use these spaces to generate an engaging, technological portfolio.

Prove Communication Skills

A 2014 study by Gallup of 1,015 adults ages 18 and older revealed that millennials are reported to talk less and text more, and many employers see this as an issue. Trouble conversing among multiple generations can stunt the communication process in a workplace. It is imperative for an employer to know that their employees are able to discuss issues on a critical level. Make it obvious that this stereotype will not be an issue.

Show that the art of verbal communication is not lost to millennials through requesting the option to talk in person, rather than through email. Face-to-face interactions will impact the employer the most, but if that is not feasible, request a phone interview.

When real-life interaction is not an option, online face-time is also a great way to prove your ability to converse. Have millennials provide their Skype username in their resume or look for opportunities to submit a video introduction. And always conclude that they look forward to speaking with the employer.

What do you think will help millennials get jobs?

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Val Matta
Val Matta
Val Matta is the co-owner and leader of business development at CareerShift, a comprehensive job hunting and career management solution for companies, outplacement firms, job seekers and university career centers. You can connect with her and the CareerShift team on Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter, LinkedIn.