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5 Things Pharmaceutical Recruiters Need to Know About Gen Z

While the stability of many businesses remains in question, the medical industry remains in high demand. As a pharmaceutical recruiter, you constantly face new challenges navigating the changing landscape of medical sales. This means you need to keep up on each new generation and understand how they impact your efforts. 

Generation Z (loosely, people born from 1995 to 2010) has already entered the pharmaceutical sales field, so it’s important to know what they want most from work. With each generation comes new priorities, but the good news is there’s already plenty of research that shows us what appeals to Gen Z.

Here are five things pharmaceutical recruiters need to know to attract new Gen Z talent:

1. Professional development and upward mobility are important.

For Gen Z, the most important factor when searching for a job is the potential for career progression and growth, according to a report by RippleMatch. These young workers want to know that when they find the right job for them, they’ll also have a clear path to develop and get promoted in the future. 

With these goals in mind, it’s important for pharmaceutical recruiters to highlight growth opportunities throughout the candidate’s interactions with their potential employer. From the job description to the interview, you can showcase the role’s growth path so that Gen Z will be attracted to the opportunity. 

Go beyond simply telling candidates that there is room for growth. Provide them with tangible examples of employees who have grown from the role and how they developed. This can be in the form of videos on the company’s website or social channels, or in real life during the interview process.

2. Vibes matter.

Company culture is also hugely important to Gen Z. In fact, one of the most common words that came up in a recent linguistic analysis by Peakon when referring to the office atmosphere was “vibe.” Similarly, a 2019 report from Glassdoor found that Gen Z reviewers frequently reference “work environment” when describing the pros of their employers. 

There are a number of ways to clearly show off workplace vibes to Gen Z candidates. To start, pharmaceutical recruiters should use social media like YouTube, Instagram, or even TikTok to show a behind-the-scenes look at what it’s like to work at the company. You can also make sure the candidate gets a tour of the offices when they come for their interview.

Giving candidates plenty of time to put themselves in the shoes (and work environment) of current employees is crucial for engaging Gen Z talent.

3. Mental health should be a priority.

More than 90% of Gen Z employees think all employers should have a mental health work policy in place, according to a 2020 report from Zapier. This generation recognizes that mental health issues are just as important as physical health needs, and they want their employers to take this into account.

Supporting the mental health of employees should be a top priority. Ideas for this include:

  • Insurance coverage for treatment and counseling
  • Top-down support of using sick days for any kind of illness (whether physical or mental)
  • Information sessions employees can attend on various mental health topics

It’s crucial that employees’ well-being is taken care of in order to attract and retain top talent.

4. It’s the most diverse generation, so be inclusive.

Generation Z is the most racially and ethnically diverse generation to date in the U.S., according to a 2018 report from Pew Research Center. This means it’s more important than ever to prioritize building a diverse group of employees and making the workplace inclusive for all. 

Some ways to make the workplace more inclusive include establishing employee resource groups to talk about topics that are important to them, normalizing the use of preferred pronouns among employees, and having open discussions about unconscious bias. 

When candidates can see themselves in the existing employee pool, they’re more likely to want to join that team.

5. Companies that take a stand are attractive.

Another quality that Gen Z talent are drawn to? Having a social conscience. If there is a social mission that aligns with the company’s values, it may be beneficial to take a public stance in order to attract young job seekers. 

The previously mentioned study from Peakon shows that Gen Z is attracted to companies with a social mission: “Raised in a time when the effects of climate change are making weekly headlines, it shows that they care deeply about the world around them with comments referring to plastic use in the workplace — and perhaps it’s something that can help organisations reach them as a generation.”
It’s crucial to showcase tangible ways the potential employer is contributing to social and/or environmental issues. Whether they’re cutting down on plastic use or donating to charitable organizations, make sure that candidates know! Share the news via the company’s website or social media platforms.

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