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Are Millennials really different from previous generations?

Posted by Huy Tran on


Organisations need to recruit throughout the year to ensure sufficient workforce to work towards targets. Yet there is an irony: There are many job seekers, many vacancies but organisations keep on complaining that they can’t find suitable ones. Additionally, while agonising to figure out solutions to hiring and expanding candidate sources, organisations are facing another obstacle: recruiting Millennials.

There is an old saying “Old wine in new bottle” to mention things that appear to be new but turn out to be nothing different. Is recruiting Millennials a typical example for this proverb?

Millennials are different. But how much?

In the whitepaper “What makes teamwork less thrilling to Millennials?, we mentioned a few times about Millennials being considered a different generation.

The figure below sketches a few points in Millennials’ lifestyle. Regarding work, they value work meaning, work-life balance and opportunity to learn and grow over high pay. At first look, it’s easy to conclude that we need to make a lot of adjustments to recruitment process to adapt to these young factors. But as we dig deeper, everything isn’t what it seems.


IBM conducted a survey in 2015 and found not many differences between Millennials and the previous generations (Generation X and Baby Boomer) in terms of expectations at the workplace. In particular:

  1.  “To create positive impact on the organisation” is the first priority in career
  2. An inspirational leader decides engagement with the organisation
  • Line managers need to be fair, transparent and consistent
  • The number one reason for leaving the organisation is to find an environment that allows creativity and innovation

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The difference of Millennials is like the upper part of an iceberg. Maybe the media has turned this matter complicated while we can only see what is visible on the surface and forget what’s under. Yes, Millennials are not much different from previous generations regarding expectations and demands at the workplace. But at the same time, we can’t apply the tactic “Old wine in new bottle” to recruit them as recruitment doesn’t only depend on analysis about expectations at work!

If we cannot apply the tactic "Old wine in new bottle" to recruit the Millennials, so what can we do? Come up next, we would answer this question and reveal some helpful tactics for you to effectively approach and recruit the young.

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Topics: Talent Management

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 Rick Yvanovich
 /Founder & CEO/

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