Within the next seven years, Millennials will account for at least half of the global workforce. Companies need to start addressing trends and develop relevant employer branding strategies that can boost top talent recruitment in the very near future. Although many studies have been published on Millennials, most research centers on characteristics common to Europeans and Americans. The resulting assumptions and conclusions about the Millennial mindset is skewed by a subset of the highly diverse whole.
Universum, in cooperation with INSEAD and The Head Foundation, has expanded its own research to capture a more global picture of the Millennial mindset, including information from 43 countries that has been updated with new surveys in 2014. Our research seeks to understand:
• Who are Millennials now, and what do they want in their careers?
• How do their defining characteristics vary from region to region?
• What are the unique preferences within certain subgroups?
By analyzing the answers to these key questions, businesses can begin creating crafting tomorrow’s workforce with employer branding targeted to the needs of Millennials. Businesses that are best prepared to connect with the coming workforce will gain a competitive edge in attracting, recruiting, and retaining the most talented Millennials.
Our research revealed that Generation Y is looking for an employer where the friendliness of other employees matches their own. That was overwhelmingly the most important employer characteristic for Millennials in most regions around the world. Only in Africa did “level of empowerment” beat out friendliness.
Surprisingly, brand image didn’t score highly in most regions, especially among younger Millennials. Only in the Asia-Pacific and Central European regions was brand image a priority. In every other region, the employer’s view on diversity was the second most important characteristic of an attractive employer. The employer’s attitude toward diversity was an especially important consideration for women, while men tended to focus more on possibilities for entrepreneurship.
There is one area that found nearly universal agreement. Around the world, this generation agrees that businesses need to contribute more to society. It’s clear that their attitudes toward a positive community, commitment to diversity and support for self-determination all grow out of this point of view. To attract and retain top talent, companies need to prove that they adopt these principles in substance, not just on the surface of their external brand image.