Fishing for and Landing Millennials in the Labor Pool

Posted by Paladin on September 06, 2017

A teaming school of young adults are making a huge splash with the entrance of millennials into the labor pool.

Millennials have surged past baby boomers as the largest generation in U.S. history. Generation Y now represents the dominant segment of the nation’s workforce. We are at a hinge point. As millenials wax within the workforce ranks, boomers are waning. Boomers are retiring in large numbers, toweling off as much younger candidates jump into the job market.

To put the dynamic in perspective, millennials will make up nearly half the U.S. labor force by 2020 while, at the opposite end of the career arc, more than a quarter-million Americans turn 65 every month.


How will this generational shift toward hiring millennials play out?

For starters, it’s a great time to be a job-seeking millennial. With unemployment hovering around 4.4%, the lowest rate seen since 2001, intensified competition for workers will drive up compensation through 2018.

That’s key, considering that a greater proportion of millennials than baby boomers think an increased salary would improve happiness according to a Staples Business Advantage survey. In fact, 52% of millennials who had changed jobs within 12 months of survey response had done so to get a pay raise, compared to just 19% of boomers.

Overall, millennials seem to have a keen sense of what’s happening in regard to their job prospects. A Google Consumer Survey conducted by Paladin across industries indicates that 31% of employed millennials are open to new opportunities. They’re essentially waiting in place until the right career move comes along. This fact underscores the need for employers to maintain ties with trusted recruiters.

Additionally, millennials are highly influenced by referrals in their job search. From a corporate standpoint, building and sustaining a positive culture will help keep current employees satisfied and prompt them to share their feelings. That type of word-of-mouth messaging delivers a powerful message to talented millennials.


Millennials inhabit a technology-intensive, “always-on” presence that moves in real time. Accordingly, companies should position themselves as a destination for the most promising candidates in today’s market by streamlining the hiring process.

In the previously mentioned Google survey, of the 454 survey respondents actively looking for new employment, 90% said the hiring process should take less than four weeks from application to onboarding. Additionally, 54% said it should take two weeks or less.

Those numbers contrast starkly with reality. The average interview process now takes about 23 days, and the average total hiring cycle spans nearly 43 days. When hiring takes almost two full weeks longer than candidates expect, there’s a huge opportunity for employers to tighten their hiring timeline. This will start their relationship with new workers on a positive note. Seek them out on social media. Find candidates where they are.


It’s becoming increasingly important for companies to attract and retain millennial workers.

As they take the plunge into today’s employment pool, millennials will “define the culture of the 21st-century workplace” through use of technology, progressive attitude toward work, emphasis on social impact and personal aspirations, according to Jess Ekstrom, a startup CEO who founded her company while in college. Listen to what millennials and their younger colleagues in Gen Z are saying about their first forays into the labor market.

Will your company merely tread water or effortlessly glide through the process of phasing out baby boomers and acclimating millennials? Make sure it’s the former by getting the numbers needed to support your employee decisions. Refer to Paladin’s 2018 Salary Guide for deep insight into how to hire and keep top-talent millennials.

2018 salary guide

Posted in: Employers, General, Hiring Information

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