Generation Y, the iPod Generation, Thatcher's Children or the Me-Firsts. However you categorise them, the current generation of highly ambitious yet principled university and school-leavers are both a puzzle and a pleasure for employers.
Defined by most of the UK's graduate labour specialists as anyone born in the 1980s, the new generation of people starting work "throw up an enormous challenge to HR in terms of their retention", says Carl Gilleard, chief executive of the Association of Graduate Recruiters.
Employers report problems as diverse as hard-to-manage attitudes, lunchtime binge drinking and a simple inability to spell or add up, yet firms are still falling over themselves to recruit this fresh crop of workers.
Keeping them happy and motivated, however, is an entirely different matter. They crave a glittering career, squeaky clean business ethics, top-notch salaries and the sort of work-life balance that would have been unthinkable to their parents - a set of demands any employer will struggle to meet.
Anthony Hesketh, director of the Centre for Performance-led HR at the University of Lancaster Management School, believes today's graduate can be a tough customer for a whole range of reasons.
"Of course these people are selfish and ambitious and no, they don't have a concept of deferred gratification when it comes to building a career, but within two years of joining an organisation, they are worth on average two-and-a-half times their salary. That makes them a vital weapon in the war for talent," he says.
Where many employers go wrong, he adds, is in treating graduates as one homogenous group of clones. "Organisations who want 21-year-olds to be 'oven-ready' and 'flat-packed for assembly' and who don't invest in their development are on the wrong track. The trick is to identify different graduate types and come up with customised solutions for them."
Hesketh believes there is a huge range of ability between bottom-tier graduates who are "frankly unemployable" and top-tier workers who are future business leaders. Between the two are sound managers and future 'knowledge workers', but they need handling very differently to get the best out of them.
One of the most difficult issues in the first few year