• By the year 2020, the U.S. workforce will be composed of more millennials than any other age group.
  • 90 percent of millennials are looking for a career in which they can use their skills for the greater good.
  • Traditional career roles in the real estate industry are seriously lacking new talent, pointing to potential leadership gaps.

It seems like all we hear about today in regards to the overall workforce pertains to millennials and their youth. It’s no surprise given the fact that the majority of the U.S. population currently falls into that age bracket, and by 2020 the workforce is predicted to reflect this.

Combine this with the tech industry being the fastest-growing segment of today’s economy, and it doesn’t come as a surprise that in more traditional industries, the talent gap continues to widen. Unfortunately, the title and escrow industry is among those struggling to attract qualified fresh faces at a time when it’s imperative we bring in new talent.

At an American Land Title Association webinar, two-thirds of the attendees said their staffs’ average age was older than 40 — with nearly 20 percent saying their staffs’ average age was older than 50.

As we experience the increasing retirement of baby boomers, the glaring lack of millennials — despite their steep numbers — means that title and escrow companies are soon facing leadership gaps.

With this in mind, the question becomes how can we begin to find and keep top talent that will continue to nourish the industry we’ve dedicated our lives to learning and growing? Let’s begin by discovering what millennials are looking for in a workplace:

Millennial magnets

We can’t all afford a free, organic-filled cafeteria and a full-service gym onsite for our staff, but recent surveys soliciting millennial employees’ feedback have revealed that there are other enticing options that aren’t all about the money.

Unlike past generations, millennials aren’t motivated in their career paths solely by money.

According to Fast Company’s research, more than half of millennials would be willing to take a pay cut for a job that aligns with their personal values. In fact, 90 percent of millennials just want to use their skills for good.

According to one report, more than half of millennials said that a company’s involvement in various causes influenced whether they accepted a job. This younger generation puts a huge emphasis on giving back and considers how a potential employer contributes to the world at large when they make their decision on what job to invest their time and energy in.

This can include offering recycling and compost bins in-office, promoting green energy initiatives, volunteer days and participating in charity events such as local food drives, races that benefit a cause and even donating blood.

In a recent Deloitte survey on millennials, 60 percent pointed to a “sense of purpose” as being part of the reason they chose their current employer. They’re not interested in a 9-to-5 job that clocks in and out.

They want an emotional and intellectual investment with their career, as well as opportunities for advancement. In fact, even more than older generations such as baby boomers and Gen Xers, millennials are looking for a place of employment in which they can continue to learn and grow.

This information points to alternate hooks mature industries such as title and escrow can use in attracting young talent. When it comes to getting them to stick around, the younger generations might not be as commitment phobic as stereotypically thought.

It’s up to those holding the leadership roles in title and escrow to recognize the needs of this younger workforce and determine how to fulfill them. With the influential status of tech tools such as social media, title and escrow companies can also learn new ways to promote and grow their business in a way that resonates with new audiences by having digital savvy millennials on staff.

Effort needs to be made to revise the standard business model of the title and escrow industry.

By embracing important causes such as the environment, installing green initiatives in the office, giving back to the community, donation programs, etc., it might save from continually starting from scratch with qualified candidates and running into leadership gaps in the near future. To steal the time-tested phrase — if you build it, they will come.

Erin Sheckler is the president of NexTitle in the Greater Seattle Area. Follow NexTitle on Twitter or connect with Erin on LinkedIn

Email Erin Sheckler

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