New workers decide on their future within five minutes, research shows

Jason Downes, MD of Powwownow

New workers decide on their future within five minutes, research shows

More than two thirds (65%) of Generation Z decide whether they’d like to work for a company within five minutes – according to new research.

The study, conducted by Powwownow, found that one in five base this judgement on the company’s job advertisement.

A further 19% make their decision after looking at the company’s website and nearly half (45%) decide before even reaching the interview stage.

The survey of 1,000 18 - 23-year olds also found that men are most likely to make a decision about a potential employer when looking at the initial job description, while women are more likely to make up their minds once they’ve meet their potential colleagues.

Men are much more likely to make a snap decision, with a quarter (26%) of Gen Z males doing so in 30 seconds or less, compared to just over one in 10 women (13%).

The research also shows that Generation Z, many of whom are graduates with sought-after digital skills, consider flexible working a main attraction of a new job, with a third of young people (32%) saying they wouldn’t apply if flexible working wasn’t an option.

Technology is also a deciding factor for 18 -23-year olds, with two thirds (66%) considering up to date technology as important or very important in allowing them to work effectively, with a further 30% indicating it as vital.

Jason Downes, MD of Powwownow, said: “UK businesses need to appreciate that the new generation entering the workplace expects different things from their employers.

“They make decisions much faster, which therefore puts employers under increasing pressure to positively market their workplace to candidates – beyond just pay.

“With talented prospective employees making a decision in less than five minutes, employers need to tailor their approach or risk losing out on a pool of talented young digital natives.”

So why the sudden change in the needs of the workforce of tomorrow? Jason adds: "The rapid evolution of technology over the last decade has had an incredible impact on the workplace, and fundamentally altered the way in which we work.

"In today’s digital world employees are increasingly looking for a personalised workplace that adapts to their own needs, and an employer that provides them with up to-date technology that allows them to work productively and efficiently."

He continued:"As Generation Z prepare to start their career, many young professionals will gravitate towards companies that demonstrate a real understanding of their individual needs.

"For many young people, that means having the option to work flexibly. In fact, research from the Smarter Working Initiative found that 70% of workers believe the option of flexible working would make a job more attractive to them."

Jason's three tips for ensuring businesses are meeting the needs of their future staff are:

  • Evaluate your workplace culture - young employees look for open collaborative environments and are becoming ever more averse to rigid corporate structures.
  • Embrace technology - as the first generation of ‘digital natives’, up-to-date technology can be a key differentiator for potential new candidates.
  • Review your flexible working policy - businesses that allow their employees to work flexibly benefit from the increase in efficiency and motivation, with 72% of young people indicating that they believe flexible working would increase their productivity.