Understanding Enterprise's Millennial Strategy

Enterprise's Management Trainee Career Path shows job candidates they can change careers without changing companies. According to Eiseman, "millennials thrive with the program's structure that includes benchmarks and specific progressions."
Enterprise's Management Trainee Career Path shows job candidates they can change careers without changing companies. According to Eiseman, "millennials thrive with the program's structure that includes benchmarks and specific progressions."

Enterprise Holdings sees the millennial generation as influential to the company’s growth. The company has more than 200 recruiters who search for qualified candidates to join its management training and internship programs.

Because millennials range from ages 18 to 34, they include not only recent college graduates, but military veterans as well as experienced workers looking for a new field – all of whom can make ideal candidates for the company’s workforce.

“Enterprise’s business model is open to millennials because it’s one of development, coaching and nurturing talent,” says Marie Artim, vice president of talent acquisition at Enterprise Holdings. “We are a promote-from-within company, and the management training program is where we develop our people, teach them every aspect of running a business and help them develop their skills.”

Recruiting Millennials

The company’s management internship program targets current college students. This full-time summer program mirrors the first three months of the management training program, according to Artim. To find college candidates, Enterprise recruiters develop relationships across college campuses. In this hands-on approach, recruiters attend on-campus career fairs and conduct in-person interviews.

“We involve ourselves with student organizations, professors, faculty and athletic departments,” says Artim. “In addition to the career centers, we try to develop college relationships to educate people about us and find talent.”

An example would be the partnership Enterprise has developed with Athlete Network to help recruit college athletes. Due to the time committed to their sports teams, these students might not be able to attend career fairs, according to Artim. Athlete Network gives Enterprise the opportunity to connect with athletes; it’s a networking site to build contacts and post job openings.

“Former student-athletes bring many desirable skills to the table, such as exceptional teamwork and a strong work ethic, which translate quite well to our business,” says Artim.

Enterprise develops college relations to educate college students about the company and its career opportunities.
Enterprise develops college relations to educate college students about the company and its career opportunities.

Connecting Digitally

To find qualified candidates for its management training program, Enterprise also uses several online career resources such as job boards (CareerBuilder, Monster), job aggregators (Indeed, Simply Hired) and social media — in addition to posting jobs on the Enterprise Holdings careers website, go.enterpriseholdings.com.

“We try to be very active in a digital manner with employment information,” says Carolyn Eiseman, director of employer brand at Enterprise Holdings. “The millennial audience is so connected and it’s very much second nature to them to reach out to their networks for advice and opinions. We want to be present with information in whatever place they may look for us in the digital environment.”

Today when searching for a job, millennials could look up a company on employment-specific sites like Glassdoor or reach out to LinkedIn contacts that work at that company for their opinion, says Eiseman. Or they might ask their friends through Twitter, Facebook or Instagram if they know anything about that company’s work environment.

“How people search for jobs has changed so much,” says Eiseman. “People will Google search terms of the type of job they are looking for. We are seeing a lot of success through job aggregators like Indeed, Simply Hired and Glassdoor that power the search results.”

Developing Content

Currently, Enterprise has brand channels for careers on LinkedIn, Glassdoor, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. According to Eiseman, Enterprise develops content that’s specific for that channel; the company doesn’t just duplicate information for all the channels.

“After creating specific content for the social media channel, we try to engage with job candidates and employees,” says Eiseman.

When trying to engage through social media, Enterprise takes a “why care, why share” approach. “If employees care to share it, we need to care to engage with it,” adds Eiseman.

On Ugly Holiday Sweater Day, Enterprise shared images of employees wearing their ugly sweaters at branches around the world.
On Ugly Holiday Sweater Day, Enterprise shared images of employees wearing their ugly sweaters at branches around the world.

By searching hashtags that Enterprise employees organically use, Enterprise can engage with them on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram. For example, when employees post a photo of their business card after a promotion, Enterprise will respond by congratulating them on the promotion, according to Eiseman. Then that employee’s network sees that his or her employer cares enough to engage with its workers.

Enterprise also stays active through social media by sharing images and pictures. According to Eiseman, the best way to grab a millennial’s attention is to share graphics with a small amount of text. Enterprise takes the “share often, not long” approach.

“We try to share as many images as possible,” says Eiseman. “On Ugly Holiday Sweater Day, we shared images of employees wearing their ugly sweaters at our branches around the world. We want to appeal to how potential employees could see themselves at Enterprise.”

Nurturing Talent

Enterprise sees itself as a good fit for millennials because of its company culture. Eiseman describes it as a fun, inclusive workplace where people come together as a team to help out.

Through its training program, Enterprise exhibits a culture of development, coaching and nurturing its talent, according to Eiseman.

“We offer an opportunity for a candidate to come to us with skills and abilities, but not necessarily needing a list of job experiences,” says Artim. “We are committed to developing that talent.”

Millennials have a desire to be successful but don’t necessarily understand the steps to move up in a company. The structure of Enterprise’s training program can be helpful, Eiseman says.

“I think millennials thrive with the program’s structure that includes benchmarks and specific progressions,” says Eiseman. “When they see how a manager has advanced and moved up, and they see an example every day, it helps keep the idea of advancement real instead of just a folklore story.”

Described as creative, millennials tend to thrive in an environment where their ideas can be heard. They are willing to work hard, but they want to understand the “why’s” and “how’s” of how things work.

“Instead of telling a millennial to ‘just do it this way,’ we explain why we do it this way and how it impacts something,” says Artim. “Then we describe why it’s important. These nuances in communicating with millennials can make a big difference.”

A millennial’s desire to help others and make a difference plays well into Enterprise’s business model — when it comes to serving customers and helping fellow employees, according to Artim.

Although millennials are known for their love of technology, they also prefer to talk to someone face-to-face to help build personal connections. “They want high touch in business more than any other generation,” says Artim.

Maintaining Motivation

Because milliennials have grown up in a more structured and “syllabussed” environment, Enterprise has created a more detailed method of explanation during training.

“We really didn’t change how we train, but we have been trying to more formally explain the how’s and why’s behind skill sets,” says Artim. “Adapting our style to be more formal fits more with what millennials are used to; it works better.”

Constant feedback helps keep millennials motivated. From Artim’s experience, millennials want a lot of feedback from supervisors; they like knowing what’s happening and how they are doing. As a result, Enterprise has highlighted the consistent feedback that has always been a part of its communication process.

“When I got hired over 20 years ago, people mainly joined Enterprise for the long-term career path,” says Artim. “While that path is still valid, millennials are more about learning skills that they can use at Enterprise or any other company. They aren’t focused as much on where they’ll be in five years; sometimes a year is a stretch. It’s becoming more popular to search for jobs where you can change roles and departments but still be in the same company. That way, a millennial is always learning new things. We can support that desire because we promote from within and our employees can change careers without changing companies.”

Comments

  1. Mike Fisher [ February 5, 2016 @ 10:05AM ]

    As a vendor that works closely with EHI-they are one of the best I have seen at recruiting and developing great talent. I always enjoy working with the leaders here-they have high integrity and are bought-in to the mission and purpose. They build great people, and those people build a great company.

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