Generation Y

Over the last couple of days I have been listening to a 3 part series from CIO Live on Generation Y in the IT industry (1, 2, 3) based on interviews with Foster Frontier’s Stuart Guest-Smith, a good listen. The last episode touched on several issues organisations need to be addressed to attract Gen Y’s.

One of interest was Stuart’s view that given the relative short lengths of employment Gen Y tend to exhibit, compared to other generations, we need to reduce the cost of recruitment. Makes sense. This means sorting out the poor and time consuming recruitment practices which scares many Gen Y’s away. The trick is to ensure the organisation’s needs are meet, like hiring the right person, and at the same time trying to make the process attractive to the candidate.

One idea Stuart proposed was to replace the early phase formal interview with a coffee discussion between the manager and candidate. This allows both sides to explore the benefits of working together. This should not be an all too foreign idea for recruiters as it happens at the the very senior levels all the time.

4 thoughts on “Generation Y

  1. Michael,
    Making the initial interview informal is all very well and happens increasingly in the recruitment industry, not just at the most senior levels, however this doesn’t reduce the cost of recruitment.

    The most obvious way a company can reduce recruitment costs is not use recruitment agencies. This means they need to they invest in their own dedicated recruitment capability to ensure they can reach the same people as the recruitment agencies do.

    Surely though it would more prudent to invest in retention strategies to reduce turnover, because the cost of losing someone is far greater than just the cost of recruiting a replacement.

  2. Ahh Kevin, prevention is always better than the cure 🙂

    Yes true investing to reduce the need for recruitment agencies will decrease costs but as you know it is not always possible. The process length and number of interviews (and their length) also need to be addressed. No point spending $20,000 in time & money for a $60,000 position where the candidate only stays for 24 months, best case.

  3. Hi, Michael,

    I was thinking about the line, “relative short lengths of employment Gen Y tend to exhibit”.

    Maybe they’ve learned that organizations can’t be relied upon for anything BUT short lengths of employment and have adjusted accordingly to maintain their existence and careers.

    Not really sure about how best to cut costs on this, although your premise certainly sounds worthwhile.

    Now you’ve got me thinking, as always…

  4. Instead of “coffee discussion” here in Europe I prefer “bear interview” 🙂

    Well, actually, I think that there must be clear defined requirements for whom company is looking for. I think I is not a good idea to do interview in real, I prefer to email people and ask questions. I save my time and their time too.

    Also, it this way I’m checking if people are good in communication via email or instant messages, because … actually business is about communication and if I fill I can talk to this person and he understand my ideas, then I … not, I don’t hire him, I suggest to do a test job (if you are in software business it is possible).

    So, if I would arrange interview and talk to 10+ persons, I would spend a day or so…, if I do business how I have described, I just spend 100$ for paid test job, which I’m sure will be useful for future project.

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