Gen Y: How to Interview and Hire this Dynamic Group

What do you think of when you hear the term “Generation Y”?

Diverse?  Entitled?  Informal?  Opinionated?

No matter how you view this dynamic group of individuals, one thing is certain – you must adapt your hiring and interviewing strategies to attract and retain the best.

Diverse, demanding and socially aware, millennials are creating a major paradigm shift in recruiting.  Here are a few tips to help you hire and interview the best talent our next generation has to offer:

Understand where they’re coming from.  On the whole, Gen Y-ers are honest, direct and – yes – confident.  They know what they’re worth and, in an interview, may behave as though they already have multiple offers on the table.  To recruit them effectively, return their honesty.  Explain your organization’s culture, let them know what the competition is like for your available position and be careful not to oversell your company.

Use behavioral interview questions.  Because millennials are generally honest, behavioral questions will provide valuable insights to help you accurately assess their strengths and weaknesses.  In return for a chance to grow with your company, they will let you know what kind of an employee they will truly be.

Streamline your recruiting process.  Millennials are used to working at internet speed.  As a result, they may become frustrated with standard recruiting methods (which typically take several weeks).  Human resources should examine your company’s hiring process and streamline it as much as possible, to keep from losing talented young candidates.


Listen to their ideas.  Millennials need to know that their ideas are valued in the workplace.  When interviewing Gen Y, ask for their opinions.  Explain the ways your company welcomes their input and lets them have (at least some) say in decisions.


Present a clear career path with opportunities for development.  Money is important, but it’s often not the ultimate motivator for Gen Y.  If you company isn’t able to offer the highest pay, entice millennials with something they want more:  career advancement.  Let Gen Y candidates know what they can strive for and lay out career path options during the interview process.  Show them where they could be in 5 to 10 years if they exceed expectations with your company.

Incidentally, these tips won’t just work for attracting Gen Y workers – they’ll help you improve your HR activities and hire top talent across all demographics.

If you lack the time, internal resources or desire to hire on your own, PrideStaff is here to help.  As a leading national staffing agency, we’re experts in identifying the high performers your organization needs.