7 Strategies for Balancing Generational Diversity in Enterprise Recruitment

multi-generational workers in office

Enterprise organizations are engaging with a multigenerational workforce on a regular basis. Navigating this demographic spectrum is crucial for effective talent acquisition and recruitment strategies in enterprise-level recruitment.  

We’ve gathered insightful tips from top recruiting and talent acquisition professionals on different strategies that can enhance the effectiveness of balancing generational diversity. From researching and offering competitive perks to tailoring outreach and clear communication, these professionals share their successful strategies for navigating the generational divide.

  • Research and Offer Competitive Perks
  • Address Broad Expectations and Tailor Posts
  • Gather Candidate Feedback for Hiring Improvements
  • Create Flexible Application Processes
  • Use Inclusive Recruitment Practices
  • Implement Multifaceted Recruitment Strategies
  • Tailor Outreach and Communicate Clearly

Research and Offer Competitive Perks

It’s important for employers to do their research and stay competitive not only in traditional compensation components, like salary or benefits, but also in company culture, flexibility, or onsite versus remote work arrangements.

If an employer notices their workforce is skewing older and they need to attract some younger talent, traditional compensation analytics aren’t going to help.

Kyle Minton, Recruiting Manager, TEC Group INC

Address Broad Expectations and Tailor Posts

My first piece of advice for striking this balance is to focus primarily on those expectations and needs that are broadly shared across all or most generations of workers. My top tips in this area are:

1. Write clear, detailed job postings that fully detail the required skills and responsibilities of the role: Workers of all ages appreciate knowing up-front exactly what will be expected of them if they’re hired.

2. Be transparent about your salary and benefits and include compensation information in the job posting: This can just be a compensation range if you don’t want to get too specific. Along with the salary, mention other benefits that you offer, especially if they’re in-demand, competitive, or unusual. Doing this will help you to attract the top talent in every age group because workers of all ages want to be paid what they’re worth.

3. Highlight flexibility and work-life balance: This is most often talked about as something Gen Z and Millennials value, but it’s been my experience that the older generations are just as interested in flexibility, particularly Gen X parents or Baby Boomers who are nearing retirement age and could benefit from having a hybrid schedule that doesn’t require commuting to the office every day.

My next piece of advice is to tailor your job postings based on where you’re advertising them, and which generations will be most likely to view them on that platform. You can put your general, all-generations post on online marketplaces like LinkedIn or Indeed, which get traffic from a wide variety of job seekers.

In-person networking events or print ads in newspapers or industry publications are more likely to attract Gen X and Baby Boomer job seekers. The middle generations (Millennials and Gen X) are often the ones you’ll attract through your company website or social media like Reddit and Facebook. For Gen Z, it can be effective to advertise on video- and image-based social media platforms like Instagram and TikTok.

This is all a generalization — the specific breakdown of which job search outlets are used most by different generations can be industry-specific to an extent, so you likely want to do some independent market research. The bottom line, though, is that tailoring the job posting’s wording based on where you’ll post it can be an effective way to capture generational talent.

Jon Hill, Chairman and CEO, The Energists

Gather Candidate Feedback for Hiring Improvements

I think it’s important to get feedback on your hiring process from candidates and tailor the processes you do have to the consistent feedback you’re receiving. It’s largely one of the better ways to understand a) what needs to change and b) what candidates expect at the hiring stage, so you know that all bases are covered.

Tracey Beveridge, HR Director, Personnel Checks

Create Flexible Application Processes

Flexibility is key to addressing diverse generational needs and expectations in enterprise-level positions. As a recruiter specializing in C-suite roles, I know that candidates are getting younger. Companies no longer want the most experienced worker; they’re more interested in big names with some hype behind them, and that often trends toward millennial candidates.

But I remain acutely aware of the value inherent in seasoned applicants.

To draw them in while not eschewing younger workers, I like to create an application process with flexibility. Optional video interviews are a great start: most love them, but a few older workers would prefer to meet in person, and I try to convince companies to accommodate that preference. The same goes for language. Companies excited about using youthful slang and euphemisms in their job postings should also create a version with more standard phrasing aimed at older candidates.

Once I’ve succeeded in creating a balanced approach to recruiting, companies go with the more established candidate about fifty percent of the time, so it’s not wasted effort. Alienating these workers from the get-go would be a mistake.

Travis Hann, Partner, Pender & Howe

Use Inclusive Recruitment Practices

When recruiting for enterprise-level positions, addressing diverse generational needs and expectations involves a tailored, yet holistic, approach. We focus on creating job descriptions and benefits packages that appeal across generations, emphasizing aspects like work-life balance, career development opportunities, and flexible working conditions.

Additionally, we ensure our recruitment process is inclusive, leveraging various platforms to reach candidates of all ages and incorporating interview questions that assess adaptability and collaboration skills across generational lines.

A key tip for maintaining a balanced approach is to regularly gather and analyze feedback from candidates and new hires about their recruitment experience. This allows us to adjust our strategies in real time, ensuring we’re not inadvertently favoring one generation over another. By staying attuned to the evolving expectations of the workforce and being willing to adapt, we can attract and retain top talent from every generation, creating a dynamic and diverse team.

Ana Alipat, Recruitment Team Lead, Dayjob Recruitment

Implement Multifaceted Recruitment Strategies

In recruiting for enterprise-level positions, I address diverse generational needs and expectations by implementing a multifaceted approach. This includes tailoring job descriptions and recruitment strategies to resonate with different age groups, offering flexible work arrangements, and fostering a culture of inclusivity and collaboration.

One tip for maintaining a balanced approach is to regularly gather feedback from employees across different generations to understand their perspectives and adapt recruitment strategies accordingly. This ensures that the recruitment process remains responsive to evolving needs and preferences.

Vit Koval, Co-Founder, Globy

Tailor Outreach and Communicate Clearly

Attracting top talent for enterprise roles means understanding what motivates different generations. We tailor our outreach to highlight what each candidate might value most. For example, Baby Boomers might appreciate stability and a strong brand name, while Gen Xers value work-life balance and flexibility. Millennials and Gen Z often seek purpose-driven missions and opportunities for growth.

The key to maintaining a balance is clear communication throughout the process. We showcase our company culture and growth opportunities for all, while ensuring the specific needs of the role are well-defined. This transparency allows candidates to self-select for positions that align with their goals, creating a win-win for both the company and the individual.

Kimberley Tyler-Smith, VP of Strategy and Growth, Resume Worded