Maddy on…

 In Tech Talk

Hello from Maddy…

As a Senior Technology Consultant at specialist digital headhunting startup, ThinkersConnect, I’m delighted to kick-start our series of blogs aimed at informing and commentating on important issues around digital, technology, talent and recruitment. This month, I’ve explored millennials, and how a better understanding of this forward-thinking and tech-savvy generation can help to bridge the gap with future employers, promoting new approaches to recruitment and helping to retain tech talent…

 

As a 28 year old, I’m a ‘millennial’ – one of the Generation Y-ers born between 1980 and 2000.  Growing up during this period of rapid economic, technological and social change has given our generation quite a unique perspective. Never is this more obvious than in the world of recruitment and, because I liaise daily with both candidates and employers, I can see that there’s often a gap in understanding between the two when it comes to employing the future stars of tech. I hope to provide a little insight…

 

Let’s take candidates first. Those born after 1980 are at one with technology, fantastic communicators, unafraid of a challenge and brilliant at multi-tasking. Because of the fast pace of life engendered by technology and the resulting 24/7 on-demand culture, we tend to be a confident, energetic bunch, able to quickly adapt to different environments and scenarios.  Growing up in a technological age where the rate of progress and innovation might leave behind those less malleable to change, we have learnt to be adaptable to navigate modern life’s complexities.

 

It is important, therefore, that our work life harnesses our desire to be challenged and our almost instinctive need for an environment which fosters continual innovation. A workplace which stimulates all of our skills and champions accelerated career progression; where we can learn, have flexibility, and live the lifestyle that we want is the key to our success.

 

From an employer’s perspective, this could potentially be a little off-putting and frankly, a little too demanding!  Previous generations are accustomed to gradually rising through the corporate ranks of large hierarchical businesses, working long hours and regularly compromising the work-life balance to earn their place.  It’s sometimes difficult to understand, appreciate and respond to the expectations of the younger workforce without creating an imbalance and alienating the rest of the valued team.

 

So, how can we bridge the divide and ensure that the freshest, most creative new talent doesn’t get disillusioned and fail to fulfil the potential that we, and their prospective employer, initially identified?  It’s always worth looking to the tech giants who seemingly never fail to continue to attract the best of the best for ideas…

 

Take Google for example.  With a comprehensive list of benefits which start by addressing Google employees’ loved-ones, Google instantly gives new recruits the feeling that ‘Hey, my first priority is my company’s, too!’. With generous parental leave, employer matched charitable contributions, continued investment in professional development and through no-cost initiatives like making it OK to bring your four-legged friend into work, the global tech company puts its staff first.

 

Another titan on the tech scene, Facebook, certainly doesn’t disappoint when it comes to employee satisfaction either.  They identified seven key areas as important to millennials: Health, Family, Growth, Finance, Community, Convenience and Time Away. Across each of these elements are impressive benefits which are married with relaxed and agile working environments where progress and innovation are the daily focus.

 

In fact, the majority of technology startups that I am coming across are now offering benefits like flexible hours, remote working, free choice of hardware and software, unlimited coffees/smoothies, free breakfasts and lunches and social events to recognise and reward hard work and success.

 

This holistic approach, coupled with attractive and creative benefits, lay down the stepping stones on the path to a better work-life balance. And a good work-life balance is the key to keeping millennials whistling while they work. Indeed, I believe that the pursuit of an excellent work-life balance is what most millennials seek. So, it follows that, if companies can understand these needs, we will thrive, be happy and ultimately, work harder for our employers.

 

I consider myself hugely lucky to be here at ThinkersConnect.  We’re a close-knit, agile team, where we all have a say and where everyone brings something unique to the table. We’re afforded respect and we’re trusted to get our work done while also being encouraged to participate in out-of-work pursuits. Alongside this, we go on courses to develop our knowledge of software development which helps us to be better recruiters and more well-rounded consultants. I feel that my desire as a millennial for a stimulating, innovative and flexible workplace is being met at ThinkersConnect.

 

I hope my insight into what young people are looking for in their careers helps to bridge the generation gap, and begin, perhaps, to forge a new approach to recruiting ‘magnificent millennials’!

 

Until next time… 

Maddy

 

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