Article: Managing recruitment and selection of a multi-generational team


Managing recruitment and selection of a multi-generational team

From 'job analysis' to 'selection', generational attributes play a very important role in the process of recruitment.
Managing recruitment and selection of a multi-generational team

Quality of recruitment is critical for business success, and it also is one of the most challenging functions of HR. The generational aspect helps streamline the incoherence that is innate to recruitment. From 'job analysis' to 'selection', generational attributes come into play in the process of recruitment. The varied motivations of these generations profoundly affect how they respond to recruitment and retention strategies and selection procedures.

Recruitment and selection of baby boomers

Baby boomers fare very well in mentorship, team development, advisory, and leadership roles. They display fewer job mobility behaviors, higher occurrences of compliance and fewer instances of termination than their counterparts. Resultantly, head hunting a Baby boomer might prove to be very difficult. The bright side to this resistance is that retaining a Baby boomer is easier than the newer generations. 

Sourcing is more effective if done through personal references who could lure them to move, than digital platforms, thus helping to break the barrier of immobility. Perks, prestige, and position highly motivate Baby boomers and highlighting these benefits can help attract them better. Though not born into technology, baby boomers have shown amazing learning curves when rightly introduced to technology. Online screening tests should have detailed instructions, and preferably, a provision for personalized support in case of clarifications would help correctly capture their KSAOs.

Recruitment and selection of Gen-X

In stark contrast to their workaholic predecessors, Gen X barged that work-life balance was a dire necessity. Though power itself is not alluring to them, roles that need them to perform decision making attracts them., The company’s deep interest in providing work-life balance and an enriched work environment, if highlighted in the candidate sourcing communication, can play a crucial role in attracting the Gen X-ers. Career-oriented social networking sites can be a great venue to find Gen X-ers since they are known to be the largest growing generation in social media. Quite familiar with the applicant tracking system and psychometric tests, they are comfortable with the tech-enabled screening mechanisms.

Recruitment and selection of Gen-Y

The Gen Y is known to search for purpose in each of their efforts and once found work aggressively towards it. The Job analysis process needs to dig a layer deeper to find the right reasons to attract a Gen Y-er. The description of organizational purpose as a whole and how the job helps to achieve it is very relevant in the candidate sourcing communication for this generation. Generation Y members are also seen to experiment with roles before deciding on an ideal career. Providing internship opportunities and part-time projects is the best way to evaluate a Gen Y candidature.

Recruitment and selection of Gen-Z

Social and Environmental sustainability is a crucial value Gen Z-ers search for in organizations since they are themselves highly aware and conscious of these. They are also known as the most inclusive of the generations. Strong recruitment communications denoting the sustainability and inclusivity strategies followed by the company can significantly help in attracting Gen-Zers. Counter-intuitively, this generation relishes face-to-face conversations, which could determine the selection strategy that needs to be used. This generation demands flexibility and deep enrichment of their job roles and responsibilities.

‘Job analysis’, one of the first steps in recruitment, itself needs to be intuitive about the generational characteristics while documenting the KSAOs to determine the person specification. As the next step, the candidate sourcing process should optimize the communication mix - namely, the content and the channels - based on the target generation. Psychometric tests and screening processes need to be sensitive to these generational differences to be effective.


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This is part 2 of the three-part article series which intends to address how multi-generational insights can help in different HR functions to synergize a cross-generational workforce.

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Topics: Recruitment, #GuestArticle

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