Operations

Now Hiring: How To Attract Top Gen Y Talent

Lexi Tucker
Posted on August 3, 2017

If you want to get your hands on some Millennial talent, you have to understand who they are, what they are looking for professionally, and how to capture their attention. Cast aside all of the hackneyed stereotypes you hear about in the media and see in countless Facebook posts — these are people you want on your staff if you ever hope to keep up with rapid industry disruptions.

Bountiful Benefits

Ken Carter, co-owner of Aadvanced Limousines in Indianapolis, Ind., says the feel of your work environment should be urban, flexible, and fun. “You have to get out of the traditional way of sitting at the desk with a desktop computer. Try evolving to a standing work station with a laptop, or possibility find a way for your employees to take their work outside,” he says.

Ken Carter
Ken Carter
Be creative and keep things interesting for Millennials, says Brent Abruzese, owner of Black Rock Limousine Company and Red Bank Limo in Red Bank, N.J. “They have a strong sense of work and reward structure. It’s like how video games have an achievement system; the more you do, the more you ‘level-up,’” he explains.

One example of a reward system is how the GPS app Waze turns boring navigating into an achievement process. By completing certain tasks (certain number of miles driven, adding other users to your friends list, etc.), drivers earn “candy” and improve their rank, creating a sense of friendly competition.

While money isn’t everything to Millennials, providing a competitive salary based on the effects a prospective employee would have on the company is vital, says John Paraoan, assistant VP and brand manager for West Suburban Limousine in Winfield, Ill.

John Paraoan
John Paraoan
“If it’s your first job, you want it to lead to something better,” he says. “You have to provide the opportunity for upward mobility, as well as resources to fairly compensate and help them do the job to the best of their ability.”

Briana Candeub, who works in sales at Park Avenue Limousine in Trevose, Pa., says to make any position attractive to a Millennial, you have to allow them to learn, grow, and advance.

“One way to do this is by making sure the work environment is serious when it needs to be, but fun at the same time,” she says. “Also, giving someone the opportunity to take a department and enhance it by enabling them to be creative and make decisions for themselves.”

Best Fits

In our fast-paced, tech heavy world, you must be able to present your company and the industry in a way to entice working professionals of a new generation. While Millennials may not be the best fit for a chauffeuring position, they tend to excel in IT and marketing positions.

These departments are typically where most limo companies have the biggest hole in their workforce, Paraoan says. “I believe this is where Millennials can make the most impact, as long as they have the proper training and opportunities for development.”

Briana Candeub
Briana Candeub
Like most Millennials, Candeub believes they have been given a bad rap for being lazy and unmotivated. “I truly feel most Millennials are motivated, want instant gratification, and want to be the ‘boss’ yesterday,” she says.

Most will find an industry they enjoy and then try out different positions until they discover the right fit. She thinks sales, marketing, PR/social media, or IT positions are best, but a motivated Millennial would be great in any position, bringing various skills to the table to help grow and expand a company.

The right position obviously varies among candidates, but Carter thinks Millennials will excel at any position that connects with or touches tech or data-driven statistics. “We’ve had great success with them managing our tech, and we make use of it. Checking out data gathered by GPS, sending job tickets out electronically to iPads, those kind of tasks.”

Flexibility is one of the biggest selling points for Millennials, so positions that allow them to work from home or on their own schedules are appealing. “Being in control of your own fate with a company and not having someone say, ‘You have to sit at this desk for eight hours a day and only get up for short breaks,’ is something that draws them,” Abruzese says.

From an operator standpoint, he doesn’t actively seek Millennials unless he has a specific freelance job like photography, social media manager, or something he’s not yet ready to hire a full-time position for.

Brent Abruzese
Brent Abruzese
Promising Postings

If you hope to attract young talent, you should know what will draw their attention. The first thing to nail down? Scheduling flexibility.

“At Park Avenue Limousine, we let our chauffeurs pick their own schedule and days off during the week/weekend. We also let them take their vehicles home,” Candeub says. The company offers a bonus for working holidays and other ways to earn more money throughout the year.

“Being your own boss has really resonated with Millennials,” Abruzese says. He also mentions storytelling is important from a design standpoint. “Instead of just lines on a page saying you need to do these bullet points, you’ll attract more applicants by telling them who you are, why you need people, and what it is they can do to help you.” He recommends looking at ads for tech startups and emulating the style.

Paraoan makes sure to mention the national and local charity groups the company supports. Detailing their client types also helps give applicants the sense West Suburban is more than a small car company.

“We sell ourselves based on our history,” Paraoan says. “This grabs people’s attention because when anyone is looking for a job, they want to be sure they will be able to make a living at the end of the day. We haven’t missed a payment to our employees or vendors since we were established in 1966.”

Carter extends the fact Aadvanced is a tech-heavy company through the way it handles the application process. Potential employees submit their resumes and applications electronically. They’ve also leveraged social media for people to submit inquires through their various channels.

“It’s important for employers to adjust to changing times because it’s not always going to be a situation where the candidate comes by the office in a suit and tie or nice blouse and skirt and formally introduces themselves to ask for a physical application. I think those times are in the past.”

Since he doesn’t like to overpromise and under deliver, he keeps job descriptions concise and tells people exactly what the position entails. “We give a brief overview of how it’s going to unfold as far as what the work environment and responsibilities will be, and how we ease the stress that comes along with executing those responsibilities.”   

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Cultured Companies

Carter says he has set up a team-oriented business culture because it requires each person to do their part to make sure the operation runs well. He encourages an atmosphere of friendly competition. “We rely on one another so nobody feels compartmentalized or abandoned.”

Abruzese keeps a looser culture in terms of scheduling. “I think Millennials are some of the hardest workers despite what people say. I’ve seen a lot of people in that age range come in with other jobs who are also going to school and are looking to pick up work at crazy times to fund their dreams. That says a lot about the generation in terms of work ethic.”

With Millennials, it’s all about moments, experiencing things, and looking for meaning and purpose, Paraoan says, so your company should focus on giving back just as much as increasing the bottom line.

Related Topics: company culture, hiring, LCTFast40, marketing/promotions, Millennials, public relations, Sales & Marketing

Lexi Tucker Assistant Editor
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