According to a survey conducted by Intelligent, employers are avoiding recent college graduates and are choosing to hire older professionals instead.
The study reveals that the younger generation, many of whom belong to Gen Z, have struggled to leave a positive impression on potential employers.
Intelligent Study Yields Surprising Results
The survey team interviewed over 800 business managers, executives, and directors actively involved in the hiring process, posing a range of questions.
According to Intelligent’s survey results, almost 40% of those participating in the hiring process express a preference for hiring older professionals over college undergraduates.
Trying to Win Over the Older Professionals
The survey, sponsored by the online magazine Intelligent, primarily centered around student life.
Unexpected findings reveal that companies nationwide are willing to provide higher salaries and better benefits to older professionals, reflecting dissatisfaction with younger candidates.
Gen-Z Struggles to Make a Positive Impression
Much of the younger generation entering the workforce for the first time are Gen Zers.
Surveyed employers express a preference for older professionals, citing a consistent failure by many Gen Zers to make a positive impression during interviews.
Problems Arising With the New Generation
Employers claim that a large portion of Gen Zers typically want to be overcompensated for the position they’re applying for, even if they lack experience.
Some assert that many younger college graduate applicants struggle with making eye contact.
Bringing Parents to Interviews
Though employers are generally accommodating during interviews, a surprising number express astonishment at younger applicants showing up in entirely inappropriate clothing.
Some of the younger generation even went as far as to bring a parent to sit in during an interview.
Gen Z Struggles With Professional Behavior
Intelligent’s findings indicate that numerous employers are frustrated with the perceived lack of professional behavior in the younger generation.
But, according to Diane M. Hayeski, there could be a reason behind the unprofessional behavior experienced by potential employers.
The Pandemic Spured Antisocial Behavior
Hayeski asserts that employers “need to recognize that, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, young people graduating from college had more than two years of disruption in their education as well as their social and professional development.”
She continued, “Current seniors were in their freshman year at the height of COVID. They likely took classes online and were unable to participate in clubs, internships, or summer jobs.”
Difficult to Work With
Despite Hayeski’s explanation for the social behavior of the younger generation, some employers believe they are simply difficult to work with.
According to the survey, over 65% of employers claim that college graduates struggle to handle a challenging workload and come off as fairly entitled in the workplace.
The Younger Generation Is Easily Offended
A large portion of the survey’s participants also agree that many of the younger generation have poor communication skills and struggle to accept constructive criticism.
Nearly 60% of employers also argue that it’s difficult to joke with college graduates as they are easily offended.
Major Companies Concerned for Gen Z
As more and more Gen Zers enter the corporate world, some of the largest companies have voiced their concern about the new era of employees.
Deloitte, KPMG, and PWC all argue that many potential employees who graduated from college during the COVID-19 pandemic struggle with office etiquette and basic communication.
Larger Firms Extend Support
This has led to larger firms offering specific classes to help the younger generation become more accustomed to working in an office setting.
Many of the classes are centered on simple skills such as how to write emails and work as a team member, and some even help employees follow the dress code.
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