It is 2022, and hiring managers and business owners everywhere need to start preparing for a new generation of workers to enter the job market. The incoming influx of Generation Z workers has many advantages, but companies need to prepare themselves for possible recruiting and onboarding challenges, as well as have a background screening process in place.

It’s vital for the companies to understand how to make job openings, interviews, and onboardings more Z-friendly. First, let’s get a better understanding of who is entering your future candidate pool.

Who is Gen Z?

Generation Z, born between 1997 and 2012, is the most diverse generation that is starting to join the workforce. Gen Zers are different from Millennials or Generation X in that they’re more entrepreneurial, they are job seekers, are better at multitasking and can be very private. They are hyper-aware, and are extremely technology reliant. This of course comes from growing up in a generation where technology has always been readily available.

The stereotype of “lazy” Millennials hasn’t carried over to Gen Z. In fact, it’s the opposite. 77% of Gen Z workers are actually expected to work harder than their previous generations. They believe the most important components that make up a great job are a great work/life balance, stability, and performing “fulfilling” work. Basically, they’re willing to work hard for the right job, which is a great sign if you are the right company for them.

Here are some other statistics about Gen Z:

  • 56% currently do not have a job
  • 37% are working part-time
  • 7% are full-time workers

They’re looking for careers that will allow them to perform multiple roles within the same place of employment. As of right now, technology is the #1 career pursued by Gen Z, with marketing and healthcare rounding out the top 3 spots.

So now that we know a little more about the generation coming into the workforce, it’s time to shift our focus to making sure both Gen Z job seekers and employers know what to look for and how to prepare for their hiring process.

Tips for Hiring Gen Z in the Workplace

There are some keys to remember when hiring Gen Z in the workplace. Here are several things hiring managers need to think about:

They’re Sensitive Sharing Personal Information

According to research from IBM, less than one-third of Gen Z feels comfortable sharing personal details with companies or brands. Having grown up during a time when mobile and digital technology is prevalent, Gen Z candidates are more sensitive to their personal information than previous generations. We need to remember they grew up in an age where data was commoditized, leading to a desire for more data security and protection.

For employers and hiring managers, recruiting Generation Zers, you should take this into account throughout the entire hiring process. Employers need personal details in order to perform background checks; however, be clear with Gen Z about why you need their information and what you’ll do with it. Clear and concise communication will help to attract Generation Z members to your company.

They Don’t Have Traditional Social Skills

Generation Z grew up as “digital natives,” using texting and messaging as another prevalent way of communication. This means their personality skills don’t translate as well into a cohesive work environment right away. Some Gen Zers may struggle at first with face-to-face interactions and may require some assistance.

Just because they seem shy in an interview or come off like they’re not willing to share something, doesn’t mean they are. It’s more a product of how they’re used to interacting with people. 

During the interview process or during onboarding, introduce them to colleagues, and key team members and show them behaviors that demonstrate the company culture. Let them know what is expected when joining your team. This can help them adjust and learn to navigate their new work environment.

They Have Little to No Job History

Currently, the oldest Generation Z employees are 26 years old, so while some may have 5-7 years of work experience, not all of them will. This means there is a chance you won’t have many previous employers to verify when Gen Z submits an application. 

Many Gen Zers however may have picked up a side job or two during college – which is different compared to Millennials who may have never held a job during college. You should also see internship or volunteer experience, which you can rely on when verifying references in your background check.

They Lack Driving Records

Research shows that Gen Z is driving less than previous generations, and, in some cases, not even getting their driver’s license. Things like Uber and Lyft have allowed them to get by without it.

Another theory is because of social media and online gaming, they don’t have to drive to meet friends as much, seeing that their social interactions take place online. Whatever the reason, the driving record of a Gen Z candidate may be nonexistent, which could be a hindrance, depending on your job description and running a driving record report.

They Love Their Social Media

Just like Millennials, Gen Z loves social media and many have shared a wealth of photos or other personal information that would make potential employers uncomfortable. Most of Gen Z is using social media to stay in touch with friends and look for a job.

LinkedIn has quickly become a great place to find young talent and promote your company as a whole to future prospective employees.

Because of the data issues that have recently come up from social giants like Facebook, Gen Z may have a different idea of privacy compared to their counterparts. Either way, hiring managers need to examine if a social media background check is necessary as part of the job description.

Still Building Their Credit Up

Millennials would often rather pay with cash or debit cards than credit cards. 

Gen Z is using tools like Venmo or Cash App to manage their online money and pay for goods and services. Looking at a credit report, as part of the job responsibility, might be another challenge when screening Gen Z. Hiring managers must keep this in mind when screening applicants.

Digital or Paper Documentation

Another question for human resources departments is whether to move their job applications and forms online. While in general, the online process reduces paperwork and the probability of data-entry mistakes, Millennials are used to paper while Gen Zers would rather go online. Millennials may be concerned with online privacy and identity theft. Gen Z will have a deeper sense of trust in the Internet.

Why Work with Barada Associates?

When it comes to moving forward with background screening of potential Gen Z employees, Barada Associates has its hand on the pulse. We are always looking for new innovations in the space and better processes to screen younger generations and help you find the best Gen Z talent there is.

When it comes to something as important as background checking a new generation of employees, don’t work with just any team. Work with a company that has set the industry standard and will continue to do so for years to come.

Contact us Today for Premier Background Screening

If you’re looking for a new partner to help with your Gen Z background screenings, talk to one of our experts. At Barada Associates, we provide screening solutions for employers every day. Schedule a time to have a conversation about your specific screening challenges.