The secret to engaging Gen Z

We spoke to Milimo Banji, creator of a unique approach to employer branding primarily focused on the younger end of the workforce, through his social media agency, TapIn. He told us more…

The secret to engaging Gen Z

Business leaders are always looking for a competitive edge, but often overlook the only true advantage left to any company  – its people.

In the ongoing war for talent, being able to recruit and keep the right people for your business strategy is worth a lot more than any PR campaign or tech-based innovation.

A strong employer brand should convey company culture in a way that is confident enough to reject the people that are not the right fit and welcome onboard those that are. 

In this new post-pandemic, work from home reality, expectations around work have shifted dramatically, particularly among the youngest generation just entering the workforce. They’re not happy with “the grind” or extra unpaid hours. They want flexible work and a four day week, among other things. The cat is well and truly out of the bag. So how (and where) should you speak to them in a way that resonates?

TapIn is a social media agency focused on helping employers attract and retain diverse talent, run by founder and CEO Milimo Banji, who explains its mission to us.

“TapIn is a social media agency that specialises in helping employers to attract, engage and retain diverse talent. We run core social media campaigns that are designed to connect employers to diverse young talent and social media. Our expertise surrounds the use of platforms like TikTok, Snapchat and Instagram, but we’ve also built one of the UK’s largest networks of influencers. We use these influencers to run social media campaigns designed to help employers attract talent.”

Widening the target

Initially focused on Generation Z, TapIn has expanded its reach over the last 18 months to also help companies engage older demographics.

“A large proportion of our employer brand work involves Generation Z, but in the last 18 months, a big part of our business has now moved into supporting clients with older generations. We’ve realised that the pandemic has pushed a large proportion of individuals to use the internet in a way they weren’t before and they’re starting to jump on these platforms. Whilst the inceptive years of our business were catered to supporting Gen Z, we’ve noticed that we can use social media to help companies attract much older demographics of talent too. So now I’d say that’s about 30% of our business, but we definitely still lean into Gen Z widely in our work.”

That widening of target demographics has benefited TapIn and allowed the company to support employers throughout the employee lifecycle.

“Definitely! It’s been good to cater to a much older demographic because it gives us more scope to support people through the lifecycle of a business, rather than just the first two or three years of early careers level.”

Many employers are struggling to engage Generation Z workers in particular. Banji believes this stems from an unwillingness to understand how Gen Z operates and what they can contribute.

“I think a large part of that is that a lot of employers are unwilling to understand Gen Z; how they work, the impact they have and what they can bring to the workforce. Some people expect old systems and old ways of working to prevail, but ultimately we need to adopt new ways of thinking in order to attract, engage and ultimately hire Gen Z.

“I think a common misconception is the age range of Gen Z – of course this is university graduates, but it’s also 27 year olds who have moved up the ranks into managerial and even director positions. Companies need to understand how to engage them and develop them throughout these years, in order to leverage their ideas and support the growth of their business.”

Flexible friends

Flexibility is key for appealing to Generation Z he believes. Banji cites TapIn’s flexible and remote work policies as central to its ability to retain and satisfy employees.

“A huge benefit that we offer at TapIn is an emphasis on flexibility. We trust our team to complete their work in whatever capacity works for them, and this has had a massive impact on our employee retention and satisfaction rates. For example, we’ve been operating a four-day working week for the past 18 months, and the ability to work from anywhere in the world for six months at a time. From a talent acquisition perspective, that’s what Gen Z are looking for.”

TapIn has also conducted pioneering research into the perspectives of Black Generation Z that informs their employer branding work.

“We wanted to find insights and data into black talent to inform our brand work, and acknowledged that there wasn’t enough sufficient findings to represent what they’re looking for from employers. In 2022 we produced a report where we spoke to 2,000 black individuals to understand drivers towards attraction and engagement towards the workplace. Then in 2023 we did it again with over 2,500 black individuals and produced the largest, most comprehensive study into black talent. 

“We’ve leveraged these insights to inform our decisions at board level and to build cohesive employer brand strategies that give our clients the edge. Our second study took more of a laser focus into intersectionality and the nuances that exist. There are insights which companies have to take into consideration when they’re thinking about building their employer brand, attracting diverse talent and moving the needle when it comes to racial equity.”

At an upcoming panel at Elite Business Live 2024 entitled “GenLazy? The Future of Working from Home,” Banji aims to share his findings on Generation Z and their implications for the future of work.

“I’ll be sharing my experience and research into Gen Z and what this means for the future workforce. I’m really looking forward to a healthy debate into the future of business, and listening to other brilliant insights and anecdotes from my fellow panellists about how my experience can differ from other business owners. It’s such a great opportunity as a whole to mix with a range of different audiences and backgrounds to be involved in conversation about the start-up and SME ecosystem in Britain.”

By leveraging social media and generational insights, TapIn helps employers engage diverse talent across generations. Through pioneering research and flexible policies that appeal to young workers, the company is poised for continued growth in today’s shifting talent landscape.

Join Milimo as he immerses himself in the debate of GenLazy? The Future of Working From Home from 12.35pm on 13th March 2024 at Elite Business Live. Brace yourselves for a dose of invaluable insights that will ignite your intellectual curiosity. Act now to secure discounted tickets, available for a limited time only. 

Ronnie Dungan
Ronnie Dungan

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