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Five Things You Can Do to Attract Millennial Talent

March 4, 2016

Some companies are ahead in the race to recruit younger workers. Here’s how you can compete.

Anne Donovan, PwC’s human-capital transformation leader, says she started noticing something different around eight years ago. New employees would stay only a year or two before quitting, no longer receptive to the olddeal that the longer they stayed, the more marketable they would be. “Our first reaction was to question ourselves,” she says. “We thought we must be hiring the wrong people.” But when PwC commissioned a study of its millennial workers, the results were clear, Donovan says: This new generation of workers wanted to work differently, and they weren’t planning to wait around for things to change.

Millennials might be the largest generation in the workforce, but their talents aren’t distributed evenly throughout corporate America. They have flocked to Silicon Valley in such a mass migration that the average age at some companies headquartered there is under 30, according to PayScale. These companies are famously millennial-friendly, with casual dress codes and perks galore. But other industries have been hard-pressed to attract young talent: According to a 2015 survey, the federal government, for instance, is only 11% millennial—more than four in every five workers are older than 35. The uneven distribution has caused plenty of corporate hand-wringing, as human resources departments compete to attract elite talent who will stick around. Here are five tips from companies that are finding ways to keep up with the evolving workplace landscape.

1. Forget the 9-to-5 schedule.

Donovan says that out of all of PwC’s millennial-minded initiatives, creating flexibility within the workplace has been the most important. In a 2011 firmwide survey of millennial workers, 95% of respondents said that work-life balance was important to them, and more than a quarter of young workers said they were disappointed by the amount of balance they were able to maintain. In response, PwC began asking managers how, exactly, they would help their team members work the hours that suit them—a top-down decision that, paired with a firmwide contest to submit flexibility plans for the busy season, reformed the company’s culture. Employees are now encouraged to individualize their schedules, like working from home if they don’t have client meetings or slipping out for an hour of Zumba during the workday.

2. If you want them to stay, offer training resources.

Young employees are itching to leave sooner. According to a 2016 Deloitte survey, two-thirds of millennials expect to have left their current employers by 2020. But the survey also points to a clear reason: Of the workers who want to leave their jobs within the next two years, more than 70% cite a lack of leadership development. To keep Deloitte’s youngest employees satisfied, chief talent officer Mike Preston says he has focused on creating a “development culture.” Millennials are “not afraid to disrupt themselves to get that growth and development” they need for their careers. “And by that, I mean leaving and working for someone else. As an organization, you had better create opportunities.” Deloitte doubled down on sending employees to training programs, and managers are expected to have frequent check-in conversations.

3. Don’t wait for the next annual review for feedback.

Once upon a time, employees could look forward to a review once or twice each year—a calendar that’s sometimes out of touch with their cycle of projects. Until this year, that’s how IBM gave feedback to its workers. Employees would set goals in January, check in with supervisors midway through the year, and be assigned a performance score and ranking at the end of the year. But working with IBM’s Millennial Corps, a community of young employees from around the firm’s global offices, the company rolled out a new system called Checkpoint earlier this year. Now employees set short-term goals that are anchored by quarterly check-ins. The single year-end performance measure was abolished, as were relative rankings. And it’s not just IBM: General Electric, Accenture, and Adobe are also revolutionizing their performance review policies.

4. Give them purpose beyond the bottom line.

For six in 10 millennials, “a sense of purpose” was part of their calculation in accepting their current jobs; almost half have declined to perform assignments at work that contradict their values, Deloitte surveys have found. Millennial workers thrive in environments in which their work has clear purpose for both the organization and society at large. This is one area where the federal government successfully hooks young workers: 80% of millennial employees say they can see how their work contributes to their agencies’ goals, and 86% say the work they do is important. But companies without an inherently inspiring mission can give millennials a sense of control and purpose by increasing transparency and demystifying bureaucracy. At inbound marketing product firm HubSpot, for example, the company designated every employee an “insider”—a privilege usually reserved for directors, officers, and significant shareholders—in order to give them all access to the publicly traded company’s detailed financial information.

5. The perks matter too.

Silicon Valley’s wealth of perks, like nap rooms, free food, and pet-friendly policies, has raised the bar for many companies. But these luxuries are often just the obvious benefits of a general culture of care that appeals to millennials. While members of Generation X value control and compensation, “millennials are driven by how well their team works together, how supported and appreciated they feel, and how much possibility they have,” PwC’s Donovan says. “They’re all about how it feels.” Salesforce has cultivated a people-driven culture that global head of recruiting Ana Recio calls a key attraction for millennial workers. “We define our culture as ohana, the Hawaiian word for family, and it is the idea that families—blood-related, adopted, or intentional—are bound together and responsible for one another,” she says. Recio credits that tight-knit culture for persuading more than 80% of interns to come on as full-time employees. 

~Claire Groden

 

Five Social Media Trends That Will Change Marketing and Business in 2016

March 3, 2016

Social media networks have taken the world and they have become an integral part of our everyday lives. There are more than 2 billion active social media users right now, and that number keeps growing as we speak. It has increased by 25% each year, which only shows that the popularity and the use of social media is definitely not going to go down anytime soon.

The most interesting part about these platforms is that they have crept their way into business planning, thus becoming one of the most crucial marketing tools. This year, we will definitely witness the peak of social media use, and the number of users will absolutely keep increasing for years to come. Let’s take a look at the trends that will change the way we see marketing and that will most certainly pave the way for success.

 

The evolving role of social media at the workplace

Let’s face it – everyone uses social media at their workplace, whether they are allowed to by their employers or they are patiently waiting for their superiors to turn away so that they can check their notifications and news feed. Something here is pretty obvious – that kind of activity lowers the levels of productivity and efficiency at work, which is something every business owner should take into account.

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However, there is a way to use social media at the workplace, and both keep the employees satisfied and ensure their productivity levels are high. Slack has become a very popular app. It has gained over 2 million active users in two years’ time on the market. Built around chat rooms and archives, with its interactive interface, it has become quite a game-changer for businesses around the world. It is great for work, as it helps employees keep the communication going, without the annoying threads of endless e-mails. Tens of thousands of business teams across the globe are using it to make their work a lot simpler and themselves more productive.Facebook at Work is another way for businesses to change how people work internally, as it helps them build their own secure social networks. It is still in trial mode and many companies are on the waiting list, but it will become free for general use this year and it will definitely change the way businesses work.

Employee advocacy and social media marketing

At the moment, almost 80% of businesses have their social media team, as they have come to the understanding that it is of crucial importance to have employees who will only deal with social media marketing. That way, they will be truly dedicated to doing their work effectively, thus managing to reach their target audience. Likewise, businesses encourage their employees to share their business content on their own social media accounts by implementing employee social advocacy programs. They have shown quite a huge improvement, with a growth of 191% since 2013.If each and every employee within a company shares content on their social media, they will get a lot more engagement than the company’s brand channel. Since they can attract a lot more people, they can help the company get a vast number of new customers. Social media marketing is the next big thing on the market and it is undoubtedly one of the best tools for expanding a business, as well as for boosting one’s reputation. Business owners who are in need of effective marketing to showcase their business to a large number of people can easily do so with the use of social media, which will spread the word about their business before they know it.

The advancement of social media advertising

Remember the time when banner ads were pretty much everywhere online, constantly annoying you even on Facebook, when all you wanted was to simply scroll your newsfeed and relax? Those days are gone, as the new and improved social media ads have taken the place of the old-fashioned ones. You have certainly noticed them on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, looking like the regular updates from your friends and followers, which is definitely more natural than banner ads. The best feature of these new ads is that they are carefully targeted towards the right audience’s needs and desires. Age, gender, location, interests and many more factors are used in order to target an audience with great precision, so that the ads you see on your news feed are the ones that you may actually need. Social media advertising has grown to a great extent, and has exceeded everyone’s expectations. Only major corporations were able to buy social media ads before, but today, every small business can afford them easily and use them as one of their marketing tools. This trend will definitely grow more and it will continue to do so in the years to come. It will certainly become even more popular among business owners who follow the latest work trends and who want to advertise their business across the globe to successfully spread the word about their brand.

The emerging social media messaging apps

There are billions of active users of messaging apps (almost 4 billion, actually), such as Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp, Viber and many others. Their primary use was to enable people across the globe to chat with one another in real time, but they have evolved into great marketing tools for many businesses. Since the major platforms have developed messaging components, social media messaging apps have become great for customer support as well.Every business owner who has a brand channel on social media networks uses those apps to stay in touch with customers. Keeping the communication with customers ongoing is extremely important for every business and social media messaging apps enable a perfect one-on-one social customer service. They are very important for e-commerce, as they are ideal for business-to-customer interactions.

The rise of social video

Social video is literally taking over the world. Last year, the number of video views on Facebook was 8 billion. Social video is emerging everywhere, as now you can put a short video on Instagram as well. Snapchat now counts an incredible number of 8 billion video views per day. Those numbers are certain to grow even further in 2016, particularly with features such as Suggested Videos on Facebook.Videos are some of the most useful marketing tools for any kind of business, so it is no wonder that 70% of companies say that video is absolutely the most effective tool in their marketing campaigns. Social videos have definitely dominated social media networks and each and every business owner in the world should understand the role of social videos to be able to incorporate them effectively into their marketing plans and strategies. There are also plenty of video-editing apps that are very easy to use and can provide them with high-quality videos for their marketing. This is a trend that will only keep growing with each coming year and we are yet to see its peak.In the day and age we live in, social media networks are the key to successful marketing. If you want to stay ahead of your competition, you should follow these social media trends that will most certainly leave a mark on the way companies do business and explore the world of marketing.

 

By: Ivan Dimitrijevic

Political Ad Spending To Ramp Up

August 25, 2015

With presidential campaigns about to rev into high gear, spending on political advertising is going to accelerate rapidly, a new study predicts. The “2015-2016 Political Advertising Outlook” reveals that politics-driven advertising will reach a record $11.4 billion in 2016, 20% more than the last comparable presidential election year of 2012. Factor in 2015 spending, and the tally of ad dollars leaps to a record $16.5 billion, according to the report compiled by research firm Borrell Associates.

Notably, political campaigners and their supporters will invest more than $1 billion in digital advertising for the first time. While digital will account for 9.5% of total political ad spending, politicians are not buying into the medium as rapidly as others. “Political advertising still hasn’t caught up with other categories that earmark 30%-50% for digitals,” Borrell states.

For the 2015-16 election period, politicians and their backers are forecast to spend $8.5 billion on broadcast television spots, the most of any single category. Of that, $5.5 billion will come from national contests with the remainder coming from state and local races.

Overall, presidential candidates will spend $120.8 million on average to fuel their campaigns with advertising. Those vying for Senate seats will spend $7.3 million each, while aspiring congressman will invest $1.6 million on average.

According to Borrell, advertisers will spend the most money in large states such as California ($1.2 billion) and Texas ($896 million).

 

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Top 5 Branding Trends for 2020

Customer Experience:Focus on providing a better customer experience at every brand touchpoint through the customer journey.
 
Engagement:The days of simply getting in front of a prospect are gone. Engagement is worth more than awareness.
 
Authenticity:People today are not willing to put up with brand exaggerations. Stay true to who you are.
 
Simplicity: Simple logos and easy to understand messaging is key.
 
Emotion Driven Branding:Smart brands will focus on emotions for meaningful positioning, differentiation and connection with their audiences, not just in 2016, but into the future.

5 Reasons Why Diversity Matters

Customer Experience:Focus on providing a better customer experience at every brand touchpoint through the customer journey.
 
Engagement:The days of simply getting in front of a prospect are gone. Engagement is worth more than awareness.
 
Authenticity:People today are not willing to put up with brand exaggerations. Stay true to who you are.
 
Simplicity: Simple logos and easy to understand messaging is key.
 
Emotion Driven Branding:Smart brands will focus on emotions for meaningful positioning, differentiation and connection with their audiences, not just in 2016, but into the future.

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