Nancy Altobello is a big fan of millennials.
Altobello, Vice Chair of Talent at EY, shared her thoughts on the changing global professional landscape and how companies can attract and nourish top talent–particularly among recent college graduates–at Universum’s Employer Branding Conference this morning in New York.
Talent, and recruiting it, aren’t just on the minds of campus reps and college seniors, says Altobello, noting that in a world where everything is increasingly more complex, talented, skilled labor is more important than ever before–and there’s less of it.
“Talent is now being viewed as an important resources by executives and by boards,” Altobello told Forbes. ”The dichotomy of talent being more important and less available has invented an executive issue.”
Below are Altobello’s observations about how to recruit and hang onto top-notch millennial employees.
1. They’re not all running for the door–if you can keep them interested.
Data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics says that millennials only tend to stay in each job an average of 18 months. Altobello says this doesn’t have to be the case.
“We’re starting to hear from a lot of people who’ve had two jobs in three years and want to stay somewhere,” she says. “But the work has to be interesting, they don’t want to keep doing the same thing.”
2. When it comes to compensation, cash is still king.
In this way millennials are just like professionals at every other stage of their careers; the best way to attract and keep the best and brightest is to pay them well.
3. To younger professionals, flexibility is almost as important as salary.
Altobello says in this context flexibility means millennials want choices about how to deliver a job well done. With the understanding that deadlines and client needs must always be met, they want options about where and when they work–and they want their managers clearly on board.
“People are looking for approval around flexibility.”
4. Millennials want to be regularly evaluated and advance quickly–but they’ll do the work to get there.
It’s a regular drumbeat about millennials: They want to be constantly told how they’re doing and see the payoff.
Altobello says managers need to understand that this is a population accustomed to “quick knowledge”–they grew up contacting their parents over cell phones with a single question, or consulting Google–and to view this as an opportunity. A yearly performance review is simply not the right approach.
“They want the trophies,” says Altobello, “but they’re very willing to earn them.”
5. On-the-job training is essential.
According to an annual survey by Accenture of soon-to-graduate college seniors and graduates of the classes of 2012 and 2013, 80% of 2014 graduates expect to be formally trained by their first employer, but 52% of professionals who graduated from college within the past two years say they received no training in their first job.
Altobello says the best way to meet your company’s demand for skilled labor is to invest in developing current employees.
“So many skills are teachable and coachable. Most important is on-the-job training. Move them fast through a lot of experiences.”
Follow me on Twitter @KathrynDill. This article was written by Kathryn Dill from Forbes and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network. Learn more about SmartRecruiters, your workspace to find and hire great people.