2019 marked the year when the first Gen Z class graduated college. Gen Z students have grown up with environmental issues, technology advancements, and debt as known factors in their lives (factors that take an increasing sense of urgency daily). They are accustomed to facing these issues because they defined them as people.
People born between 1997 and 2012 have slowly started to understand that skyrocketing college costs, climate change, and technological progress are going to influence their lives and career choices. The developments in all industries have influenced their values and interests regarding their entrance into the workforce, and they’re asking themselves career-related questions like What job would offer me income security? What career should I choose to have a positive impact on the planet? What job will still be around in the following years?
What expectations does Gen Z have for the workforce?
Microsoft has recently released a survey to show what Gen Z college students want from the employment market. YouGov conducted the research targeting 7-25-year old people and asked them about their expectations and career goals as they get ready to join the global workforce.
The first Gen Z classes are tech-savvy and value-driven people who want to excel at their jobs. But they are also an anxious generation because 1 out of 3 of them are feeling worried or unsure about following a career in the domains they prefer, and over 50% of them would like a job that doesn’t exist yet. 48% of them think their familiarity with technology will help them perform and communicate better. They expect technology to change the current job market and the hunt for a job will be easier for them.
The Gen Z group also marks a change in the human mindset because they would rather prefer to be unemployed than settle for a job they don’t love. They want to commit to a position that allows them to fulfill their purpose. Because they grew in an era when climate change has impacted their lifestyles, and they are a socially conscious group focused on exploring the improvements technology provides. They are willing to collaborate, communicate, and build ideas to transform the world into a better place. 50% of them think technology can bring positive changes.
Today’s generations also value diversity, inclusion, and belonging. Companies interested in hiring Gen Z professionals need to make these three values their core values to attract this young and skilled workforce. In fact, this is vital for brands that want to thrive because 50% of Gen Z professionals in the USA are nonwhite. The employers ready to collaborate with a diverse generation have plenty to gain.
However, even if this group’s strength lies in its diversity, skills, and values, research also shows that they’re also looking for work benefits, high income, and job security. Let’s remember that this generation grew up during the Great Recession, and therefore they care about financial security. Forbes states that work hours and income are among the most important factors they consider when looking for a job. Even if some people think financial insecurity is the new normal, this generation isn’t willing to accept this mindset. They yearn for financial stability and success.
As they take the first steps towards their first jobs, they can pick from a list the previous generations didn’t even dream of.
The best jobs for Gen Z college grads
These young specialists are eager to use their enterprising and tech-savvy aptitudes to perform at their jobs. Sadly, most of them are uncertain about which career to pick because they want their first job to pay off in terms of happiness, flexibility, values, and income. LinkedIn data provides plenty of information on the jobs they can access. They published an article called Grads Guide to Getting Hired to help them select between the available choices, and they recommended Gen Z people to extend their interest beyond areas like education, business, and STEM.
The top entry-level jobs college grads can choose from are software engineer, registered nurse, salesperson, teacher, and accountant.
When younger Gen Z-ers don’t know what career path they should follow, they’re advised to target specific industries that offer a wide array of occupational categories. For example, if they pick science, they can apply for jobs from pharmacist to chemist and teacher. Chemistry tutoring is a good way to ensure they land a job after college. Financial services, healthcare, and higher education are the top industries recent graduates list as their preferred industries.
Gen Z graduates are hired into healthcare and hospitals, financial services, higher education, information technology and services, and retail. Why do they choose these areas? They want to impact the planet positively, and teaching and nursing are some of the career paths that allow them to help people. Nursing experts are highly needed because they support the aging population.
Alongside their desire to help other people, they are also passionate about environmental causes like conservation, alternative energy, and climate change. When they pick an employer, they ensure the company is environmentally sustainable.
The fastest-growing careers with a positive impact on society are solar photovoltaic installers, wind turbine service technicians, physician assistants, nurse practitioners, social workers, social and community service managers, and environmental scientists.
To understand the job landscape, the Gen Z graduates enter, we need to understand their demographic makeup. They have access to more advanced education than the older generations, and the college enrolment numbers are steadily growing. This group thinks college education is vital for their career. Gen Z outranks the Millennial generation in the USA by 1 million, and if we combine them, we get a promising, young workforce willing to use technology to ease their work and boost their performance. These specialists have had a lifetime of exposure to the internet and easy access t technology. They can quickly adapt to the changing technological landscape because they are aware it plays a big role in their job prospects.