Tips for Recruiting Teens: More than Just Summer Job Workers

CareerForce branded graphic with the words Youth Employment and images of young people on it

Teens can be extremely reliable, flexible workers who are quick to learn new skills. As a result, many employers value them highly as workers. Beyond meeting immediate staffing needs, employers should also think of hiring and recruiting teens as an opportunity to build their workforce pipeline. Helping teens see your industry as a viable career option can help you in the long run. Offering summer or year round internships, apprenticeships, or on-the-job training opportunities to teens can help build a pipeline of workers for your industry and help you establish relationships that may further your business in the future. 

Here are some tips for recruiting teen workers: 

  • Reach out to career counselors and/or CTE instructors at local high schools and community colleges and find out how you can connect with students about your employment opportunities. It could be an informal lunch and learn coordinated with an instructor or as formal as taking part in a teen job fair the school is hosting or participating in.
  • Contact staff at a CareerForce location near you to connect with youth programs like Step Up Minneapolis and Right Track St. Paul for teens who are already trained and ready for jobs. These programs have access to hundreds of youth workers who are eager for employment.
  • Make sure that you have an attractive website with an online job application that is mobile friendly with easy instructions on how to apply. Share your job openings on Instagram and other popular social media channels.
    Ask your teen workers to tell their friends that you’re hiring. Teens are natural networkers and can help you get the word out about open positions.
  • If you can’t hire people younger than a certain age, be up front to avoid frustration among younger teens. For example, if you can’t hire people younger than 16, clearly state that you welcome applications from people 16 and older.
  • Make sure you're adhering to child labor rules and keeping your teen workers safe. Rules vary for kids ages 14 to 17 and by the nature of the work. You can find information on the Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry website.
  • Contact a CareerForce location near you for assistance in reaching and recruiting teen employees.