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Part Two: Recruiting and Retaining Gen Y Employees

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According to the National Retail Federation, turnover within the restaurant, retail and hospitality industry has been approximately 60%-200% over the past five years. Low pay and young staff members are major contributors to the problem, but what can businesses do to improve their turnover and, thereby, their labor costs? Employers should improve their recruiting strategies and their ability to retain employees. TimeForge’s labor management products can assist with strategies to hook the enthusiastic and hard-working Gen Y-ers, in addition to keeping them happy, informed, and fulfilled by their work.
Using college and high school campuses to recruit talent is an excellent way to reach Gen Y-ers in their element. Individuals who are part of Generation Y are especially peer-influenced, so recruiters should be close to their age, and advertisements should appeal to their interests. It’s important to highlight your businesses philanthropy and responsibility during recruiting, because, as we mentioned in Part One, Gen Y-ers are especially concerned about the environment, social justice and various conservation and humanitarian issues. It’s important to contribute toward (and emphasize to prospective employees and the community) the kind of charities that hit home with Generation Y.
An understanding of Generation Y’s appreciation and attachment to technology will help you better recruit and manage members of this demographic. The online and interactive labor management TimeForge provides is easy to use and appealing to Gen-Yers, who have grown up comfortable with computers. In addition to the appeal of online schedule viewing, shift-swapping, training/certification reminders and more, when it comes to applying for jobs, Generation Y prefers to submit their resume/application online. TimeForge’s applicant tracking systems make it easy to compile and store online applications with our applicant tracking systems, which will have you onboarding the most qualified applicants with minimal time and effort.
The amount of retailers accepting online applications has increased exponentially within the past 5-10 years, so if your business isn’t offering a digital application process, it’s likely that you’re losing out on potential job candidates. In a 2007 pilot program, McDonald’s installed computer kiosks to accept employee applications in 40 of its restaurants. The number of applicants at those restaurants jumped by as much as 100 percent. At one McDonald’s in College Station, Texas, the employee turnover rate also was reduced by more than 20 percent, according to an article by Andrew Tilin. By using TimeForge, your business could enjoy similar turnover reduction and employee retention.
Gen Y-ers appreciate the ability to apply quickly, easily, and impersonally while in casual clothes. Offering online application and resume submission also eliminates a great deal of the necessary paperwork that comes with accepting applications and hiring new employees, which not only makes things simpler for management and corporate (where applicable) but it’s a start towards Generation-Y-luring “Green” initiatives. TimeForge can drastically reduce the need for paperwork with our online products that feature document/certification uploading and storage, employee on-boarding, and employee management to assist in a transition to a more “Green” company.
It’s also important to recognize that more Gen Y-ers have goals of opening their own businesses one day, than in previous generations. Learning what they need to know in order to accomplish this is another intangible benefit your business can offer to Generation Y (and other) staff members, and TimeForge’s labor management system is a great way for inexperienced individuals to gain experience and understanding of what managing people is like. In order to find future entrepreneurs, recruit and advertise near hospitality-geared high school classes and university colleges (ex: Texas Tech’s Restaurant, Hotel and Institutional Management college,) and give your Generation Y employees as much room for education and higher placement as possible, in order to allow for growth and continued interest.
TimeForge can help your business better appeal to Generation Y, which can help increase your number of applicants, reduce your turnover, and allow you to better manage your entire labor staff, regardless of generation.

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