Often typecast as lazy and entitled, Gen Y would rather be known as the generation that will change the world.
Identifying as activists, volunteers and advocates, Gen Y is an engaged group of civic-minded individuals. Today’s youth are committed to a variety of local and international issues and believe that they have an individual and collective responsibility to do good and create positive change.
According to Deloitte’s global Millennial Survey 2014, 63% of Gen Yers donate to charities, 43% actively volunteer or are a member of a community organization, and 52% have signed petitions.
Some of the issues they care about include: social equality, environmental sustainability, education, health and human rights, and whether tweeting on behalf of a cause, purchasing fair-trade products, attending rallies or fundraising dollars, Gen Y is tuned in and ready to lend their support.
Aligning with brands that care about the impact they have on society is a priority for many top students and recent grads. From their consumer choices to their professional goals, they want to make life decisions that reflect their core values and beliefs. As a result, many actively seek personal and professional opportunities that enable the expression of individual passions and interests.
Inspire Gen Y to get on board with your employer brand by incorporating corporate social responsibility (CSR) into every stage of your recruitment cycle. Here’s how:
Use it to attract
To attract and encourage Gen Y, CSR needs to take centre stage in your campus recruitment efforts.
Competition for top candidates is high, and social impact has become a point of differentiation for employers. One way to establish your employer brand as the preferred choice of Gen Y candidates is by emphasizing your CSR achievements.
Students and recent grads want to learn all they can about your organization—including your community involvements. Did your organization partner with a new non-profit this year? Talk about it! Did your sales team fundraise for a local charity? Share the details! Demonstrating the impact your organization has on the community at large tells potential candidates a lot about your organization’s values and beliefs.
Remember: CSR is part of your overall workplace culture. Highlighting the community work your organization does won’t just influence the career-decisions of highly-sought after candidates, it will also influence future talent’s perception of your brand.
Incorporate your achievements into: the conversations you have on campus, during info sessions, in the posts you share on social media and the content you produce on your TalentEgg employer profile.
Use it to develop
Top candidates are attracted to employers who encourage personal and professional growth and development. They are looking for meaningful opportunities to refine skills, add value and be recognized.
When recruiting top talent, connect their career-goals to your organization’s community efforts. Company-wide, team-specific and/or individual volunteer initiatives can all be utilized as additional development opportunities.
Think of it this way: volunteering helps to hone desirable skill sets, such as fundraising, event planning or marketing. Involving new hires in your community efforts will allow them to apply their talents, develop new skills and add value to your organization in an alternative way.
For example, company-wide days of service offer Gen Y hires a chance to stand out to management while making an impact. Whether they step in to help count donations at the end of the service day or rally their peers to participate in volunteer activities, new hires have the opportunity to demonstrate their leadership potential.
Use it to retain
Creating a workforce that genuinely cares takes time and dedication, but top employers know that giving back makes a business successful.
It makes sense: the opportunity to give back to the community while at work equates to a positive employee experience. By encouraging your Gen Y hires to get involved, you’ll have a more committed workforce and a stronger bottom line.
How can you measure employee engagement with CSR? Ask! Conduct occasional surveys on the status of your volunteer initiatives to see whether employee interests are aligned with your current priorities. Ask your Gen Y hires for suggestions on innovative, fun fundraising activities to implement in the future. By including them in the organizing process, you’ll foster deeper connections to your organization.
Discussion: How do you incorporate social impact into your recruitment plan? What sort of community work does your organization participate in?