Youth Marketing 101: How can employers prepare for Gen Z?

One of the most common pieces of advice shared by the experts at our youth marketing festival YMS is that in order to successfully market to the next generation of consumers, you have to listen to them, and get them involved in your campaigns from inception. What better way to do this than to hire talented, creative young people to join your team?

The oldest members of Gen Z (born 1995-2010) are now aged 24, which means this group includes the current young graduates looking for their first full time jobs. Here are our tips for employers who want to hire the best young talent entering the workforce today.

How to attract the best Gen Z talent

The generation applying for their first jobs today have different expectations and priorities to those who have come before. They’ve heard about the generous benefits offered by leading tech companies like Google, which provides free food and welcomes office dogs, and Spotify, which offers six months paid maternity and paternity leave. More traditional businesses need to review their benefits to ensure they tick Gen Z’s boxes.

While fun freebies may be attractive, they’re not the only thing that young workers prioritise. Having grown up in a recession, Gen Z are conscious of their finances, so they’ll weigh up pay alongside factors such as personal development and career progression opportunities. This idealistic group are impressed by fairness at work, and expect their employers to reward hard work and achievement.

Creating a Gen Z-friendly workplace

Once you’ve employed some exciting young talent, getting the best from them at work is your next challenge. While they are a driven, creative and innovative group, they sometimes struggle to work within the framework that suits people of older generations. Having been encouraged to think independently from a young age, they tend to question bureaucracy and challenge unnecessary processes, but this shouldn’t be perceived as disrespect. They’re simply used to convenience and efficiency, living in a fast-paced world.

A common stereotype about Gen Z is that they have a low attention span - often cited as eight seconds. This can impact their attention to detail, so although their digital native skills enable them to work very quickly, it’s important to create a work environment where they can focus, and put a review process in place to reduce mistakes. Keeping their work day varied and engaging can also help to keep them motivated and inspired.

Hear more about Gen Z’s priorities and aspirations from our Youth Trends and Future Leaders panels at YMS19 NYC, coming up this September at Brooklyn’s Industry City. Further info and tickets are available here.