In the fast-paced business world, it can be hard to stand out – even more so for a small business or startup competing with global multinationals for graduates’ attention.
In order to engage with recent graduates, you should do what any good marketer would do – position yourself as having the thing your target market wants, and do so authentically.
What do millennials want?
While the terms ‘millennial’ and ‘graduate’ are not synonymous, they do have a significant overlap. As such, appealing to millennials is a good proxy for appealing to graduates
Gallup’s “How Millennials Want to Work and Live” report tells the same story. One of the strongest findings from the survey is that millennials don’t only want to work for a paycheck – they want to work for a purpose too, for their jobs to have meaning.
The key to attracting graduates to your workplace? – giving them a purpose.
This provision of purpose is something missed by a majority of employers, as the survey reports only 29 per cent of millennials are engaged, that is emotionally and behaviorally connected to their work. The rest are either not engaged (55 per cent) or even actively disengaged (16 per cent). If you can provide an engaging work environment, it won’t matter that you can’t pay as much as the largest companies – millennials will prefer working for you anyway.
Another way to provide meaning besides a purpose, if in an indirect way, is to give millennial employees chances to contribute to charities and good causes through their work. Only 54 per cent of millennials are given these opportunities according to Delloite’s 2017 Millennial Survey – but those that are have higher company loyalty and a more positive opinion of business behaviour.
“Having a strong purpose does not absolve the need for effective communication.”
Telling a brand story
Unfortunately, it’s not good enough to provide a purposeful environment for graduates to work in – you need to have a way of communicating this too. A good way to do so is through a brand story.
Brands that have a clear and honest mission are valued more highly by millennials than older generations, according to Enso’s World Value Index. Yet as Sebastian Buck* wrote in Fast Company, “a note of caution: Having a strong purpose does not absolve the need for effective communication.” Many of the brands in the index were doing great things yet the public at large simply didn’t know about them.
Being a great employer is not enough; people need to know you’re great.
Thankfully, there are avenues that a small business can compete on – social media being one of them. Telling your brand story through channels like Facebook and Instagram is a good way to tell your story without needing to blow the bank.
While big corporations have the resources to make themselves better known in mass media, the flipside of this is running the risk of seeming faceless and inauthentic. Small businesses can use the advantage of their size to speak more authentically with millennial graduates via social media. But once you start telling your brand story, how do you find the graduates looking to work for you? That’s where Monash Talent can help. We’re an employment agency in Melbourne that works with the talented graduates of Monash University. Get in touch today to learn about how we can help find the perfect match for your business.
* Buck, S. (2017, October 13). As Millennials Demand More Meaning, Older Brands Are Not Aging Well. https://www.fastcompany.com/40477211/as-millennials-demand-more-meaning-older-brands-are-not-aging-well