Survey: Millennial Talent Acquisition High Among Lenders’ Priorities

More than 60% of mortgage lenders plan to hire millennials over the next year, according to a survey recently conducted by talent acquisition firm Rick Glass Executive Search.

The survey of c-level mortgage leaders shows that millennial talent acquisition is high among their priorities.

“I found this both surprising and expected,” says Rick Glass, owner of the Sacramento, Calif.-based search firm. “This young group has a somewhat different set of priorities and a global view that differs from previous generations. To recruit them effectively, c-level executives need leaders who can identify the top millennial prospects and relate to them in a way that brings out their best. Recruiting and leading them are not necessarily as intuitive as in the past. They require a careful approach and new thinking on the part of management.”

Another interesting trend revealed by the survey is that many executives feel “performance accountability” is something that is lacking among their management teams. A startling 78% of respondents say they had concerns over the way their leaders accepted and embraced responsibility for their teams’ performance results.

“This would seem to indicate a cultural resistance from using traditional business metrics to identify performance success,” Glass says. “C-level executives like leaders who seize opportunities, accept responsibility, drill down to root cause analysis and articulate solutions supported by data and analytics, and engage participation necessary to ensure results. This well-rounded ‘operator’ has a broader reach into multiple disciplines and is prepared to do everything possible to meet the objectives of the greater good. It indicates a prime recruiting challenge for senior leadership in our industry.”

The survey findings suggest that mortgage lenders plan to grow more through acquisition in the near term than they do through organic growth. Some of the small and mid-size platforms with purchase lending penetration are being squeezed by a lack of cash for expansion and are at a premium today, particularly among non-bank mortgage lenders, Glass says.

One of the top areas of focus, in terms of talent acquisition, is finding recruits with “mergers and acquisitions leadership experience.”

“To achieve and sustain growth, profitability and market share, executives are all-too aware that they must have the right people in place to lead their origination and operations teams,” Glass says, adding that this will be a challenge moving forward.