How to recruit Gen Z workers 

By Anah Sattar

Gen Z has entered the workforce at a time of unprecedented change. Remote work is on the rise, AI’s taking over and let’s be honest, the economy's seen better days. Throughout all this, these up-and-comers have displayed remarkable levels of adaptability and resilience. They're not only going with the flow, but actively driving changes that will redefine the modern workplace.


Unlike previous generations, many Gen Zer’s places a high value on social responsibility and company culture, often prioritising these factors over salary. They are shifting workplace expectations and demanding more from potential employers than any other generation before them.


They want to work for organisations that genuinely care about having a positive impact and they are not afraid to vote with their feet, with 8 in 10 claiming they would “quit their job tomorrow” because of a toxic work culture.


So, what does this mean for employers?


By 2025, Gen Z will make up nearly a third of the UK’s workforce. That’s a substantial chunk of the talent market. Organisations will have to adapt their recruitment strategies to win over these workers and bring them into the fold.


If you’re wondering how, we’re here to “spill the tea”. In this blog we will break down exactly how you can become the employer of choice for Generation Z, with additional tips and tricks from an actual Gen Zer. 

Building an employer brand

To win over Gen Z, you need to understand what makes them tick. This generation prioritises social responsibility, company culture, and holistic well-being over traditional compensation packages. They’re not just looking for a job; they’re looking for a workplace that aligns with their values and supports their overall well-being. Organisations that champion social responsibility and environmental sustainability will stand out to these socially conscious candidates.


Showcasing your company’s commitment to social responsibility and environmental sustainability is key. Highlight your efforts and initiatives that contribute to a better world. Gen Z wants to see that your company is walking the walk, not just talking the talk.


Shout about your company culture! This should be inclusive and supportive, offering a welcoming environment where everyone feels valued. Use authentic storytelling to bring this to life. 


Employee testimonials and behind-the-scenes content can give potential recruits a genuine feel for what it’s like to work at your company. Real stories from real employees are far more impactful than polished marketing jargon.

Leverage digital channels

To reach Gen Z, you need to meet them where they are: online. Optimise your website and job postings for SEO to ensure they’re easily discoverable. Make sure your careers page is engaging and informative, reflecting your brand values and culture.


Social media is a powerful tool for connecting with Gen Z. While traditional platforms like LinkedIn are still a go-to, consider branching out into Instagram or even TikTok, yes, we said TikTok, to reach Gen Z where they spend most of their time. Share content that highlights your company’s culture, values, and employee experiences. 


Encourage your current employees to share their positive experiences on their own social media channels too. Authentic, employee-generated content is deemed more trustworthy than the polished content that comes from company accounts.


By focusing on these key areas, you’ll build an employer brand that not only attracts but also resonates with Gen Z. They’re looking for more than just a job – they want to be part of a company that shares their values and supports their aspirations.


Get this right, and you’ll be well on your way to becoming their employer of choice.

Recruiting Gen Z

When it comes to recruiting Gen Z, transparent communication is key. This generation values honesty and clarity, so be upfront about job roles, salary ranges, and career progression opportunities. Clear and detailed job descriptions are essential—avoid vague language that leaves candidates guessing. Instead, provide a precise outline of responsibilities, expectations, and growth prospects.


Maintain open and quick communication throughout the recruitment process. Gen Z expects timely responses and updates. Keeping candidates in the loop not only shows respect for their time but also demonstrates your organisation's efficiency and transparency. This builds trust and sets a positive tone for their potential employment.


During the interview process, be sure to take inquire about their values and passions. Where possible, demonstrate how your company values align with theirs and what you are doing to make a positive impact. 


Take time to understand their career ambitions and highlight the progression opportunities available to them at your company. Remember, while candidates have to sell themselves to your organisation, you also have to sell your organisation to candidates. 

Communicate transparently

Enhance the candidate experience

The candidate experience is a make-or-break factor in attracting Gen Z talent. Simplify the application process to avoid lengthy forms and repetitive tasks. Gen Z appreciates efficiency and convenience, so streamline your application to make it as user-friendly as possible. Implement a mobile-friendly application process, considering that this generation is highly mobile-centric and often prefers to manage tasks on their phones.


Provide timely feedback to candidates to keep them engaged. Whether they’re moving forward in the process or not, prompt and constructive feedback is appreciated. It shows that you value their time and effort, and it leaves a positive impression of your company, regardless of the outcome.

Utilise technology effectively

Gen Z has grown up with technology, so leveraging the right tools can make your recruitment process more appealing to them. Utilise video interviews and virtual recruiting events to connect with candidates. This not only saves time and resources but also aligns with their comfort zone of digital communication.


Integrate AI-driven recruitment tools to enhance the candidate experience. AI can help streamline initial screenings, provide personalised communication, and offer insights that can improve the hiring process.


You may also want to consider offering virtual office tours and team meet-ups to give candidates a real sense of your company culture. This can be a game-changer in how to recruit Gen Z effectively, providing them with a tangible feel of the work environment without needing to step foot in the office.


By focusing on transparency, improving the candidate experience, and leveraging technology, you'll create a recruitment process that resonates with Gen Z. They value authenticity, efficiency, and innovation, and aligning your strategies with these principles will help you stand out as an employer of choice.

Gen Z value work-life balance and flexibility as much as any other generation, if not more. Offering a flexible work models and a culture that values life outside of work is crucial. 


This generation thrives in environments that support their need for autonomy and personal well-being. Flexible work arrangements, such as remote or hybrid options, are highly valued. Gen Z appreciates the freedom to choose where and how they work, allowing them to be more productive and satisfied.


In addition to flexible schedules, provide benefits that support holistic wellness. This includes mental health days, wellness programs, and resources that cater to their overall well-being. Encouraging work-life balance by respecting boundaries and avoiding unnecessary overtime shows that you value their personal time and mental health, which is crucial for their long-term commitment to your organisation.

How to retain Gen Z workers

Work-life balance and flexibility

Gen Z is ambitious and eager to advance quickly in their careers. Developing clear career paths with opportunities for rapid advancement based on merit is essential. They want to see a tangible route to success and know that their hard work will be rewarded.


Offering continuous learning opportunities is a great way to retain Gen Z talent. Peer-to-peer mentorship programs, professional development courses, and workshops keep them engaged and help them grow. Support their entrepreneurial spirit by allowing them to work on side projects and 'side-of-desk' initiatives. This not only nurtures their creativity but also demonstrates that you value their diverse interests and skills.

About the author


Anah Sattar


Anah is a Transformation Experience Administrator (TX) at Vitro, helping clients with Cornerstone and product analysis.


Since joining Vitro, Anah has gained accreditations from Cornerstone CoreHR & Recruitment modules.


Anah works with our clients on a daily basis via our on-demand support service, as well as dedicating time to assist her colleagues in evaluating client systems for improved efficiencies which in turn adds value to their business processes. 





Final thoughts

To wrap things up, understanding how to recruit Gen Z workers boils down to a few key points. First, understanding and aligning with their values is crucial. This generation places a high premium on social responsibility, company culture, and holistic well-being, often prioritising these over traditional compensation packages. Your employer branding needs to reflect genuine commitments in these areas to capture their interest.


Engaging Gen Z during the recruitment process means being transparent and communicative, offering a seamless and mobile-friendly application process, and utilising modern technology to make connections. Once you've brought them on board, retention hinges on offering flexible work arrangements, supporting their career development, and creating an inclusive, supportive work environment.


Embracing these principles will not only attract Gen Z talent but keep them engaged and motivated to remain with you in the long-term.


By 2025, they’ll comprise nearly a third of the UK’s workforce, making it more important than ever to adapt your strategies to meet their needs.


So, keep evolving, stay genuine, and you’ll be well on your way to becoming the employer of choice for the next generation.

Career development

Creating a supportive and inclusive workplace where diversity is genuinely valued is non-negotiable for Gen Z. They want to feel that they belong to an organisation that respects and embraces differences. Regularly gather and act on employee feedback to improve the work environment. This shows that you’re listening and committed to making your workplace better for everyone.


Provide ample resources and support for mental health and well-being. This could be through counselling services, mental health days, or workshops focused on stress management and resilience. Showing that you care about their mental health can significantly boost their loyalty and satisfaction.


By prioritising work-life balance, offering clear career development paths, and fostering a supportive and inclusive environment, you can retain your Gen Z workers. They seek more than just a job; they want a workplace that aligns with their values and supports their growth and well-being. Get these elements right, and you’ll not only keep them but also inspire them to bring their best selves to work every day.

Creating a supportive environment

To effectively recruit and retain Gen Z workers, you need to stay in the loop with the latest trends and preferences of this dynamic generation. Their values and expectations are constantly evolving, influenced by rapid technological advancements and societal changes. 


Keeping up to date on what matters most to Gen Z ensures that your strategies remain relevant and appealing. Whether it’s keeping an eye on new social media trends or understanding their stance on the latest social issues, staying updated helps you connect with Gen Z on a deeper level.

Additional tips and best practices

Stay up to date

Leverage your data

To effectively recruit and retain Gen Z workers, you need to stay in the loop with the latest trends and preferences of this dynamic generation. Their values and expectations are constantly evolving, influenced by rapid technological advancements and societal changes. 


Keeping up to date on what matters most to Gen Z ensures that your strategies remain relevant and appealing. Whether it’s keeping an eye on new social media trends or understanding their stance on the latest social issues, staying updated helps you connect with Gen Z on a deeper level.

Data is your best friend when it comes to refining your recruitment strategies. Use real-time data insights to understand the preferences, behaviours, and trends among Gen Z candidates. This could be data on which job postings attract the most attention, which social media platforms drive the most engagement, or what feedback candidates are giving about your recruitment process. 


By leveraging this information, you can make informed decisions that enhance your ability to attract and retain top Gen Z talent. Tailor your approaches based on what the data tells you, and you’ll be more likely to hit the mark.

Leverage your data

Don’t go it alone. Collaborating with experts and consultants can provide you with valuable insights and fresh perspectives on how to recruit Gen Z. Consultants offer experience and specialised knowledge that can help optimise your recruitment processes. 


Incorporating these additional tips and best practices will ensure you’re not only attracting Gen Z talent but also creating an environment where they want to stay and thrive. Staying updated, leveraging data, and collaborating with experts are powerful ways to keep your recruitment game strong and ensure your organisation remains a desirable place for the next generation of workers.

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