The Ultimate Guide to Attracting and Recruiting Gen Z Talent

The Ultimate Guide to Attracting and Recruiting Gen Z Talent

Key Takeaways:

  • Scouting Gen Z talent requires a focus on purpose, transparency, personalization, and a positive candidate experience. Employers must adapt their recruitment strategies to align with the values and expectations of this tech-savvy and purpose-driven generation.
  • Communicating the EVP effectively is crucial for attracting Gen Z talent, emphasizing factors like mentorship, career growth, recognition, flexibility, and work-life balance.
  • Gen Z prefers a personalized recruitment experience, which includes digital engagement, authentic employer branding, and interactive assessments.
  • Establishing a strong, respectful, and supportive relationship with Gen Z candidates is key to the successful recruitment of this cohort.

The statistics speak volumes about the impending impact of Gen Z on the global workforce. Comprising 30% of the world's population today, this generation is gearing up to make up a significant 27% of the workforce by 2025. 

But understanding Gen Z goes beyond mere numbers; they are a cohort of people who have seamlessly integrated technology into their lives since birth. Their comfort with digital platforms, social media, and instant communication has not only shaped their identities but also redefined their expectations from the workplace. 

In this rapidly evolving landscape, businesses and organizations that hope to thrive must understand the Gen Z mindset and adopt innovative strategies to recruit and attract this emerging talent pool.


Attracting Gen Z Candidates

The landscape of recruitment is evolving rapidly, especially when it comes to Gen Z workers. Recent studies reveal that 83% of Gen Z individuals consider themselves job hoppers. Their motivations for career choices extend far beyond financial gain, emphasizing personal development (35%), ambition and the desire to prove themselves (28%), and family responsibilities (28%) as top priorities.

Nearly a quarter of respondents cited money, the aspiration to make a difference, or a sense of purpose as driving forces in their professional pursuits, with 24% attributing their career choices to passion. Another study found that 76% of job seekers prioritize company diversity. These insights underscore how each generation has different desires. To attract top talent in Gen Z, success hinges on fostering a sense of community and connection that resonates with the unique values and motivations of Gen Z talent.

recruiting gen z talent


How to Recruit and Retain Gen Z Employees


1. Overhaul the Employer Branding 

One of the defining aspects of this generation lies in its unwavering commitment to purpose-driven pursuits. Gen Z individuals actively seek meaning and fulfillment in their professional endeavors, showing a desire to align their personal values with the ethos of the organizations they choose to be a part of. 

To truly connect with Gen Z and harness their potential, organizations are encouraged to reevaluate their employer brand to ensure they address the issues that drive talent attraction and retention in this generation. To elaborate, Gen Z places a high premium on transparency and authenticity in the workplace, seeking employers who reflect these values – especially since 80% of Gen Z individuals are actively seeking better alignment between their values and their work. 

Younger employees, driven by a sense of purpose, are increasingly inclined to join and remain with companies that prioritize diversity and inclusion, social and environmental responsibility, and the overall well-being of their workforce. In response to this, companies need to scrutinize their policies, practices, and core values to ensure it’s being showcased in a way that resonates and attracts Gen Z talent.  

Recruiting Gen Z necessitates a new strategy grounded in radical employer honesty. It's about going beyond generic recruiting tactics and creating a specific employer brand that authentically reflects the company's culture and values.


2. Communicate the EVP Effectively 

To truly excel in recruiting Gen Z talent, it's essential to grasp what resonates most profoundly with this generation. This generation, more than before, is looking for more than just a job; it's about presenting a pathway to a fulfilling career that aligns with their values and aspirations.

If hiring professionals want to stand out from other employers, it’s essential to determine what the organization is able to offer in the EVP and how to integrate these offerings into the recruiting process.

Some benefits Gen Z talent is seeking can include:

  • Mentorship 
  • Career pathing and internal mobility 
  • Recognition and appreciation
  • Workplace flexibility
  • Learning & development 
  • Community participation
  • Work-life balance

As workplace offerings continue to evolve, it’s important to understand what top Gen Z talent is seeking and be honest about the rewards being offered to them. Also, fostering a connection and building trust with potential candidates hinges on transparency regarding what they can expect from the organization as employees and, critically, following through on promises outlined in the EVP. 

A strategic starting point for this process is researching the job market, studying competitors and industry trends, assessing the company’s current offerings, and leveraging insights gathered from surveys to comprehensively evaluate what candidates seek in an employer.

gen z recruitment strategies


3. Personalize the Candidate Journey

Gen Z seeks a personalized experience throughout the recruitment process. Harness data to customize the communication with candidates and adapt the recruitment approach to align with their preferences. This personalized touch demonstrates the company’s genuine interest in them as unique individuals rather than viewing them as mere applicants in a crowd.

Personalizing the candidate journey to attract Gen Z talent requires a deep understanding of their preferences, values, and expectations. Here are some strategies to tailor the candidate experience for Gen Z:

  • Digital Engagement: Utilize technology to create an engaging online application process. Ensure that the career website is mobile-friendly, user-friendly, and visually appealing. Consider incorporating chatbots or AI-driven tools to answer questions and provide instant feedback.
  • Authentic Employer Branding: Use real employee testimonials, videos, and social media to provide a genuine glimpse into the workplace. Gen Z values transparency and authenticity, so avoid overly polished or generic messaging.
  • Optimize Social Media Profiles: 39% of talent discover job openings through social media. Ensure the company creates content on the platforms that Gen Z talent is on (i.e. TikTok, Instagram, YouTube).
  • Interactive Assessments: Implement interactive assessments or gamified elements in the application process. This keeps Gen Z candidates engaged and helps hiring professionals evaluate their skills and fit for the role in a more dynamic way.
  • Personalized Communication: Use data-driven insights to tailor communication with candidates. Address them by their names and reference specific aspects of their resumes or applications in the correspondence. Avoid generic, one-size-fits-all messaging.
  • Flexible Interview Options: Offer flexible interview formats, such as video interviews or asynchronous interviews, to accommodate Gen Z's preference for remote and flexible work arrangements. Be open to discussing potential work arrangements that align with their needs.
  • Quick and Transparent Feedback: Gen Z appreciates swift feedback throughout the hiring process. Provide timely updates on the status of their application and offer constructive feedback after interviews, regardless of the outcome.
  • Feedback Loop: After the hiring process, seek feedback from candidates about their experience. Use this information to continually improve and refine the candidate journey.


4. Review and Optimize Job Listings

Clarity in role expectations holds significant weight for Gen Z, with a staggering 98% emphasizing its importance. Recruiters keen on attracting Gen Z talent should take note of this, as it underscores the need for transparent job listings that include both pay transparency and specific job descriptions. Also, some Gen Z candidates have expressed concerns about having the right qualifications, and if there are “too many unrealistic requirements,” Gen Z talent will refrain from applying.

The job description often serves as a candidate's initial encounter with a company, making clarity and transparency within it immensely significant. Once an applicant becomes an employee, their perception of the company's opportunities often aligns with what was initially conveyed in the job description. For instance, if the job description promises mentorship and growth prospects for entry-level employees, it is crucial to follow through on these commitments. Failure to do so can result in a subpar candidate experience, impacting both morale and the company's reputation.

It's worth noting that the candidate experience is paramount for Gen Z, and a negative experience can quickly lead them to explore opportunities with competitors. Thus, crafting tailored job descriptions that emphasize the role's alignment with Gen Z's aspirations for purpose and personal growth, along with highlighting opportunities and the broader impact of the role, can go a long way in attracting and retaining top talent from this generation.

generational recruiting


What to Consider When Hiring Gen Z Talent

Hiring in today’s landscape is like no other, and it’s always a good idea to keep in mind how crazy it can get. For Gen Z talent, this is many of their first jobs. They’re not industry veterans who have experienced a tumultuous hiring market before. Before anything, hiring professionals should keep in mind the following:


Be Approachable and Available

For many Gen Z job seekers, the job market is scary and unforgiving. Being visible and present during the hiring process can make a huge difference in candidate morale. This is why fostering strong communication during the hiring process is essential.  

Visibility in the hiring process plays a crucial role in establishing a shared understanding between employers and candidates, serving as the cornerstone for building enduring and meaningful relationships in the future.


Have Clear Expectations

Establishing clear expectations serves as a cornerstone for Gen Z, offering them a sense of control and fostering greater mental and emotional well-being within the workplace. With an overwhelming 98% of Gen Z individuals underscoring the significance of explicit role expectations, this entails providing comprehensive information, day-to-day job responsibilities, growth prospects, etc. Such clarity not only empowers Gen Z but also contributes to a more harmonious and stable work environment.


Be Kind

In today's workforce, there’s also an unparalleled stress epidemic, as 83% of U.S. workers grapple with stress related to their jobs. Jumping into a hiring market like this, where high-volume hiring and layoffs are both equally common, it can be hard to feel safe and secure in a role (or as a job seeker in general). Candidates are even having difficulty finding opportunities to interview, with many being ghosted as soon as they submit an application.

On the other hand, when people feel cared for and supported, they are better equipped to face challenging situations – in this case, their employment status or the hiring market.

The above can make or break the candidate experience, and Gen Z truly values respectful, honest communication and connections.



Ultimately, recruiting and hiring Gen Z talent lies in being open-minded to the new generation of workers. By focusing on the areas discussed above and Gen Z candidate’s experiences as they go through the hiring process, recruitment marketers can improve their recruitment processes and ensure a more pleasant candidate experience for applicants.

The Recruitics team is ready to assist you in revitalizing your Gen Z recruitment processes, ensuring their effectiveness in identifying, engaging, and securing top-tier talent. We will harness our real-time data insights to adapt, innovate, and collaborate, aiming to enhance your strategies in this current market. Feel free to get in touch with us today to explore how we can assist you further!

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