Print Your Future: How to find, attract and keep the next generation
Best Practice Toolkit for the European Graphical Sector
Intergraf and the British Printing Industries Federation (BPIF) have collaborated on this Best Practice Toolkit as part of the EU-funded project Print Your Future.
The toolkit has been designed as a best practise guide for stakeholders in Europe with an interest in finding and attracting employees to the print, print packaging and graphic communications sector, and subsequently keeping them in our industry.
This guide issues advice for raising the profile and attractiveness of our sector, as well as pointing to concrete examples of best practices from across Europe. The guide is not exhaustive, but will give readers inspiration and ideas about how to improve the image of print in in particular when it comes to recruitment and employment.
Print is an enormous sector and an important contributor to Europe’s economy – both now and for the future.
A fundamental asset of the printing industry is its workforce, and a new generation of print professionals is required to produce the products we all need, and to keep the sector sufficiently dynamic and agile in order to respond to challenges. It is crucial that businesses adapt and integrate new innovation. The lines between print, manufacturing, design, physical and interactive are blurred and standing still simply isn’t an option.
To guarantee the enduring competitiveness of the graphical sector in Europe, we must work together to promote the image of print and ensure we both equip and inspire future generations
In the toolkit you will find advice and guidance on how to:
FIND THE NEXT GENERATION
There are lots of places where you can search for new employees, including websites, trade federations, trade unions, schools, colleges, and universities, print fairs, and job fairs. Look around for relevant events in your area which could help you to reach your target group. Cast a wide net: look both within and outside of vocational education and training providers. And remember, people in both older and younger age groups may have the profile you need.
To attract younger generations, it is crucial that you look at engaging potential candidates from an early age. Young people often start making decisions about their careers very early, so try to let them know about the career options that print can offer, and what it’s like to work in the industry. Opening up the conversation with young people and outlining the possible career paths is key.
Connecting and opening up to local schools, career advisors and organisations to raise the profile of your business within your community is important. Building these relationships is also a way in for recruitment promotion and raising the profile of the industry as a whole.
ATTRACT THE NEXT GENERATION
To attract and retain talent, you need to build an employee-focused company culture. Today’s workers demand a good work-life balance, clear career expectations and opportunities, and a value-driven environment. Ensuring that you are offering your current staff this kind of culture will help you to attract new people. One important tool that can help to build this culture is continuous communication and social dialogue in the company.
HOW TO KEEP THE NEXT GENERATION
Strict, hierarchical workplaces are a thing of the past. Interesting jobs and meaningful work matter more than they did. You need to make sure your workforce understands and is part of the bigger picture.