Tuesday, September 1, 2015

6 Social Media Rules for Attracting Young Talent in the Workplace

Young Talent

Face it, if you want to recruit the best and brightest minds, you’re going to have to go after top young talent in your industry. There are new rules for attracting young talent in the workplace, and some of them might surprise you.

Recently, Cisco released a study about what young professionals want in a work environment. They studied more than 2,800 young people from 14 different countries around the world. They asked them questions about what they are looking for in a company, and what kinds of perks would sweeten the deal. They also asked about deal breakers, or things that might cause them to look elsewhere.

News flash: You don’t need to pay big for young talent right now, just let them check their Facebook account every once and awhile…

After looking at the numbers, the most important thing for attracting young talent was the use of social media, device freedom, and the ability to work remotely. 45% said they would actually take a lower paying job if they had more of these freedoms in the workplace.

Rule #1: Salary isn’t as important as the freedom to communicate.

30% of college students said that they would consider the following things ABOVE salary when weighing potential job offers.

  1. Social Media Freedom
  2. Device Flexibility
  3. Work Mobility

Rule #2: The line between personal time and work time is vanishing right before our eyes.

Student texting during class

56% of college students globally say they would either turn down a job that banned access to social media, or find a way to circumvent corporate policy. That’s making a pretty strong statement if you ask me.

It’s not just students and prospective hires making these demands, companies are adopting this attitude to attract top talent. 40% of  employees said they’ve come across companies that marketed a flexible social media policy during the interview process.

Rule #3: Company-issued devices aren’t just for ‘company business’ anymore.

The days of one mobile device are over. 77% of young employees have multiple devices, and 33% use at least three devices while they are work. To my previous point, the line between work and personal communication is becoming increasingly hard to find.

Some folks might be shocked by this one, but i’m not. When asked about company-issued devices, an overwhelming 71% of college students believe that company-issued devices should be approved for personal and business use.

Rule #4: Freedom to use, means the freedom to choose.

It’s not just about using preferred devices, it’s becoming more and more about choosing the device. 81% of students surveyed said they want to be able to choose their own device for work. It’s all about the connection, as young adults suggested a desire for their company to “stay empathetic of their need to be connected via social media and personal websites“.

Rule #5: You don’t have to come to work anymore to have a job.

Person with PDA handheld device.

Amazingly, almost a third of college students (29%), believe that once they start working for a company, it’s their right and not a privilege – to be able to work remotely on their own flexible schedule.

The majority of them, around 70%, believe it’s not necessary to work in the office on a regular basis, barring any meetings of course. Sounds like a data security nightmare, or a growing market depending on your point of view.

Rule #6: Young talent demands you support their lifestyle.

At first glance, it seems like young adults and college students have major entitlement issues. But in reality it’s just about supporting the things at the office that make up their life out of the office. The lines aren’t just blurring, they are vanishing altogether.

Be prepared, college students expect to get compensated for the following…

  1. Surfing the web
  2. Checking their Facebook account
  3. Watching YouTube videos
  4. Making personal calls
  5. Texting
  6. Not being in the office
  7. Accessing sensitive corporate data remotely
  8. Using work devices for personal use

Conclusion and closing thoughts

Back up a moment, and realize this isn’t anything unusual. As a country we’re obsessed with movies, texting, and social media, why should the workplace be any different?
We can’t get people to stop texting while their driving, and that endangers a lot more than profits. The workplace faces a similar set of challenges, something each company needs to consider before recruiting new employees fresh out of college.


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