Convincing Gen Z to Choose Procurement

Learn how to capture the attention of Gen Z and convince them that procurement is a career that aligns with their values and aspirations.

By Hugo Britt | November 28, 2023

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Gen Z currently makes up almost one-third of the world’s population and will account for 27% of the workforce by 2025 – but are they interested in joining your procurement team? 

Convincing Gen Z to choose a career in procurement requires a tailored approach that aligns with their values and aspirations. This generation is known for its emphasis on work-life balance, flexibility, and social causes. They recognize the importance of mental health, while being the most stressed generation in the workplace. And, of course, they’re super-keen on social media and grew up with smartphones.

Gen Z and Procurement

Let’s delve into how to tailor your strategy to capture the attention of Gen Z and convince them that procurement is the G.O.A.T. (or is that too cringe)?

The power of social procurement

Highlighting the importance of social causes and social procurement can be a compelling way to attract Gen Z to your procurement team. Gen Z is known for its strong social conscience and desire to make a positive impact on the world.

So, hiring managers need to:

  • Emphasize how procurement professionals play a pivotal role in driving socially responsible initiatives within organizations.
  • Explain how social procurement involves sourcing products and services from suppliers who support ethical, environmental, and social causes.
  • Showcase the positive impact that procurement can have on communities, sustainability, and human rights.
  • Illustrate how a career in procurement can be a pathway to driving meaningful change.

Known for putting an emphasis on work-life balance, flexibility, and social causes, Gen Z is apt to choose a career that fully aligns with their values and aspirations.

Showcase a work-life balance

The pandemic shifted attitudes towards work and personal identity. Today, only 49% of Gen Z’s say work is central to their identity. To convince Gen Z to choose a career in procurement, emphasize the unique balance that this profession can offer.

Showcase stories of procurement professionals who successfully juggle their work and personal lives, demonstrating that the demanding nature of procurement doesn’t have to come at the expense of personal time.

Flexible opportunities

Flexible work policies are a priority for Gen Z, with 77% indicating they would consider looking for a new job if their current employer asked them to work on-site, full time. After all, many members of this generation began their career during COVID-19 lockdowns, and consider remote working the norm.

Be sure to:

  • Highlight the flexibility within procurement roles.
  • Discuss options such as remote work, flexible hours, and the ability to structure tasks in a way that suits individual preferences. 
  • Make it clear that procurement roles can adapt to their lifestyle choices.

Competitive compensation

Vibe check. Although flexible working, a sense of purpose and other benefits are important, compensation is still a key consideration for Gen Z. 35% of Gen Z ranked the cost of living as their top concern, while 51% live paycheck to paycheck. 46% indicated they have taken on a side job to make ends meet.

Ensure your salary packages are competitive, and provide information about the potential for growth, performance-based bonuses, and incentives that come with a career in procurement.

Turn procurement tech into a talent magnet

Gen Z is the first generation to grow up fully immersed in the digital age, making them highly tech-savvy. Emphasize how procurement leverages cutting-edge technologies such as artificial intelligence, data analytics, and e-procurement platforms. Show them how technology streamlines processes, optimizes decision-making, and enhances efficiency within procurement.

Highlight the exciting opportunities to work on innovative tech-driven projects that can revolutionize supply chain management and sustainability efforts. This generation thrives in tech-forward environments, and by illustrating how procurement integrates these tools, you can make the career even more appealing and forward-thinking.

Engage with Gen Z on social media

Create a strong and friendly presence for your procurement team on the platforms that Gen Z prefers (hint: it’s not Facebook). Share engaging content about the exciting projects and innovations within procurement, and encourage interaction through polls, Q&A sessions, and behind-the-scenes glimpses.

Prioritize mental health support

Mental health is a real concern for Gen Z, with 46% reporting anxiety and a whopping 80% saying mental health support and policies are important when considering an employer. Emphasize your organization’s commitment to mental health. Discuss any supportive resources available, such as counseling services, stress-relief programs, and the understanding of work-related challenges in procurement roles.

Convincing Gen Z to choose a career in procurement requires a personalized and strategic approach that showcases a work-life balance, flexibility, competitive compensation, and more.

Preach, fam.

Convincing Generation Z to choose a career in procurement requires a personalized and strategic approach. Show them that procurement offers work-life balance, flexibility, competitive compensation, and a supportive environment for mental health.

Engage with them on their favorite social media platforms, highlight tech opportunities and social procurement. By aligning your approach with their values and priorities, you can make a compelling case for a career in procurement and capture the attention of this generation.

For more procurement advice to share with Gen Z, check out our career series here:

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