What Are the Best Interview Questions for Millennials?
What Are the Best Interview Questions for Millennials?

What Are the Best Interview Questions for Millennials?

Conducting interviews with recent graduates can make the generation gap feel more like a canyon. It can be tough to find common ground to get the ball rolling and even harder to know what to ask to get a detailed answer.

As evident by the millions of text messages they send every day, millennials do like to communicate (just maybe a bit more virtually than conversationally); however, they may not be as interested in answering the typical “where do you see yourself in 5-10 years?” questions. As the old saying goes, ask a clichéd question, get a clichéd answer.

So what's an HR professional to do? Try some of these tips for making the most of interviews with the biggest growing generation in the workplace.

Get on Their Level

When given the opportunity to share during interviews, millennials will open up. It’s important to engage with millennials on their interests and plans at the outset of the hiring process, but from a different angle than you may be used to.

You want to invite the younger generation to tell their story and speak about themselves honestly. There’s something to be learned about an applicant’s view of the future from having them talk a bit about what led them to this interview. Try asking, "was their last job helpful for their career journey or just a means to an end?"

This question is a way to get millennials to talk about how they envision their future without making them feel like they have to give a dishonest or sycophantic answer about your company or the position. Asking this question lets young interviewers know you understand that sometimes a job is just a job, and it provides a nice segue into discussing the job they’re applying for in those terms.

Appeal to Their Sense of Adventure

Millennials are a generation both more aware and more inclusive of diversity, not only with regard to people, but life experiences as well. They want to live a life reminiscent of an Apple commercial, full of interesting, unique pursuits, people, and places. And they’re certainly not afraid of the unknown.

Ask them to speak about a time they were in a completely unfamiliar situation and enjoyed it. Based on this answer, you can glean an applicant’s desire to branch out from the status quo. Would they thrive from experiencing varied responsibilities and locations with your company or would they rather have stability and consistency?

By and large, millennials are risk-takers who enjoy trying new things. They also tend to have a somewhat shorter attention span than their older peers. Not only are you getting a feel for how the applicant feels about plunging into the unknown, but you might be able to glean whether they are looking for a long-term or short-term solution.

Know Their Wide Array of Interests

This sentiment goes hand-in-hand with the last section: millennials like to experience new things and, by consequence, learn new things about themselves, the world, and the people around them. Make use of this characteristic by having them describe a talent of theirs not directly related to the position they’re applying for.

Even after college, millennials enjoy learning through social groups and activities, both face to face and virtual. Because our world is growing ever more connected, millennials are afforded more opportunities for interdisciplinary learning. Many millennials find new passions after college but may not consider how those interests could benefit their work life.

By finding hidden talents (and applications for those talents in your company), you can provide a more diverse and fulfilling experience for a millennial in your workplace and, perhaps, find a long-term fit for them within your business.

Millennials have energy, drive, and passion, and they want to find fulfilling work just like anyone else. Tailoring your interview style to them by letting it be more conversational and less rigid both helps them feel at ease and gives you real insight into whether they can be one of the building blocks for your company’s future.

Millennials may be becoming a dirty word to some, but there's no denying the need for strategies to engage every generation. Check out our employee engagement whitepaper or some of the articles below for more tips from Paycor!

Related articles:

Millennials: What Do They Really Want?
3 Tips for Managing Your Millennials
20 Facts You Need to Know About Millennials

Source: Chief Learning Officer

More to Discover

Webinar: Turnover - What's Causing It and How to Solve it

Webinar: Turnover - What's Causing It and How to Solve it

Taking a deeper dive into what causes turnover and how to solve this ever present problem that many organizations face. Speaker Henry Link Henry is a Senior Marketing Program Manager for the Marketing team at Paycor. Henry has been instrumental in the ideation of the HR Center of Excellence which is an action plan grounded in data, experience and research to help businesses of all sizes and industry, achieve HR excellence.

The Keys to Recruiting and Compliance Success in Manufacturing

The Keys to Recruiting and Compliance Success in Manufacturing

For HR professionals and business leaders in the manufacturing sector, keeping up with the array of compliance regulations and safety issues has always been challenging. But with unemployment at an all-time low, attracting skilled workers has overwhelmingly become the top concern for manufacturers. In fact, the Manufacturing Institute and Deloitte report that 22% of skilled manufacturing workers are slated to depart the workforce within the next decade. And with experts estimating that a total of 3.4 million workers will be needed to enter the industry over the next ten years, finding new ways to improve the recruiting process and attract top talent will become more important than ever. In this article, we’ll take a closer look at these...

HR Center of Excellence Overview Video

HR Center of Excellence Overview Video

Welcome to the HR Center of Excellence. A dedicated resource center with action plans and inspiration to help you unlock the true power of HR and make a difference in your organization. Start exploring! Watch the HR Center of Excellence overview video, below:

Prepping for 2019 HR & Compliance Toolkit

Prepping for 2019 HR & Compliance Toolkit

Based on Paycor’s nearly 30 years of experience helping clients successfully navigate the complexities of year-end, we’ve created this toolkit complete with the expertise and resources you need to finish out the year strong and stay ahead of what’s required in 2019.