Tag Archives: Campus Recruitment

Open Communication in Recruitment

Career Center Student Assistants
Career Center Student Assistants at Johns Hopkins University.

At the recent NACE 2011 conference, I had the pleasure of hearing great discussions about how career centers and corporate recruiters can work together better. One great idea we discussed was having a better communication model for corporate recruiters and career centers that looks like a basic corporate hierarchy. In addition to names and titles at companies or career center staff, it would also include a short description of who is responsible for what as it relates to recruiting or marketing on the campus.

For example, a career center director might be in charge of alternative marketing opportunities available through the career center in addition to managing career fairs or scheduling on-campus interviews. A career center office manager might also oversee job postings and updating company literature and premium items for their students.

Alternatively, a recruiter from a company would provide the career center with a list of the two or three people within their organization who the career center can contact for various updates throughout the school year. Some key people a career center may need to speak to at your company could be the head of recruitment, the lead recruiter assigned to that campus, and someone in your communications or design department with access to company logos and company overviews.

Communication between career center and company should be transparent and easy to understand. Starting here will create a clearer understanding of each other’s business and develop cohesiveness when planning a successful campus recruitment season.

Is your school or company currently using a communication structure like this for on-campus recruiting? What other tips do you have for those involved with student recruitment?What other tips do you have for those involved with student recruitment?

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The Process of Building Your Recruitment Brand

I presented the 16 Tools to Build Your Brand and Recruit the Very Best at the NACE National Conference last week. Before we begin discussing each of the points from that presentation, I wanted to give an overview on our strategic process to recruiting so you have a frame of reference.

Campus Media has an internal philosophy about the process needed to be successful with recruitment marketing and advertising. Below is a diagram of the process, but let me explain each of these parts for you.

Campus Media's Strategic ProcessWe see a great deal of companies who look at the college market and start their marketing play with “we want to do ‘x’ or ‘y,'” but haven’t thought through what effect it will have on your organization. Many approach their brand building by doing the same things year after year. With how quickly things are changing these days, it’s  important to be conscious of each step and determine what the net effect is going to be before you start and execute your recruitment plan. Then start the process all over again for your next initiative. This process can be used annually or semi-annual depending on your budget and planning cycles. More often is better than not due to how fast the student mind-sets are changing these days. The economy is having a strong effect on this too. Two years ago a recruitment brand strategy was very different than it is today.

Let’s break apart each step:

1. Company – This is what you more than likely already have in place. It’s what your business, department, etc. has defined as who you are, why you do what you do as a company, what you want your consumers to think of your brand, your key competitive advantages and products.

2. Customer – In a recruitment context the customer is the student you are looking to influence/hire. You need to define what your consumer think of you. Most of the time your brand view doesn’t align with what the public thinks your brand is. This is where research comes in to play. What does the customer think your competitive advantages are? Why do they buy or want to work from you? What do you offer that others don’t? What’s your brand mean versus your competition? If your “Company” elements above don’t align with the “Customer’s” way of thinking and what’s important to them, then your campaign will not likely achieve the goals set out for the program that’s being developed.

3. Planning and Strategy – This stage is where the 16 tools start to come together and your ROI is developed. What message will you use? Where will the message be located? Do you need to make changes to how your teams are dressed or what they talk about when interacting with the students? When does your marketing happen? How does it help effect the disconnect that likely exists between stages 1 and 2 above? Do you need to make changes to your website or Facebook page or YouTube channel or handouts or booth design or videos or…or…or…? Run through everything to ensure each tool you use is on message and in the right places to cause the shift needed in your consumer’s mindset about your brand/company.

4. Execution – This is the “get it done” stage. Execute on the brand message, website strategies, on campus events, speaking, career fairs, social media, etc.

5. 20/20 – In this stage, take a look at what went well… or poorly. Do your follow up consumer research to see if your goals/objectives outlined in the planning and strategy stage occurred. What did you learn? Did you hire the students you expected to hire? Why or why not? In essence, you should be able to define if you hit the ROI elements you outlined in phase 3.

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5 Ways to Keep Millennials Engaged at Work

Millennial WorkersIf you are hiring recent grads you are probably seeing that it can be hard to hold onto them longer than a couple years. It’s almost as if they get bored of the job as soon as they are ready to take on more responsibility. Here are a few ideas to help you though those challenges:
1. They see their jobs as more than just a job. They look at it as much more social. Allow them to connect with others on projects versus working solo.

2. Let them work on projects that are outside the company. Millennials see that a company being involved outside of the day-to-day get the job done work is important. Make sure that volunteering is part of your company culture and then let them be part of those committees or let them lead the social/volunteer aspects. Support from your company around giving back to the community is important. Giving back should be a team effort and needs to be backed by the leadership in your company. Also, make sure the person ultimately in charge of the volunteer/giving-back element is sitting down with him/her regularly regarding the activities. They millennial will feel much more engaged and part of the company.

3. Diversify their jobs by giving them different jobs that they can run with and/or own. These can be smaller jobs that after you’ve had a chance to sit down and talk to them about their plans/desires can be transferred to them. Also ensure that these “owned” jobs fit within their personal goals and interests. You’ll get better job performance when it does.

4. Graduates generally take a job with a company with the idea that they will only be there for a couple years and then move on. Be open and honest about that with them and feel free to ask about their plans for the future. Show them they are needed and encourage them to stay in the position longer as to better position themselves for success when they do decide to work for someone else.

5. Let young employees  have access to all levels of management. Millennials want to be able to ask the person who can give them the best information when they have a question. Today’s youth don’t care about chain of command and have no problem going directly to the president of the company to discuss their job.

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Students optimistic about career outlook despite unemployment rate

Photo Credit: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Photo Credit: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Despite a struggling economy and unemployment nearing 10%, college students remain optimistic about their career prospects. In fact, nearly two out of three (64%) are confident that they will be able to start their careers in whatever area they choose. In contrast, only one in four (25%) believe that the economy is in such bad shape that it doesn’t make sense to start their careers now. This is according to data collected in February 2008 by SurveyU and youth marketing agency Campus Media Group of 1,000 college students ages 17-26.

When it comes to looking for and securing summer internships and jobs, students enrolled in a business major are more proactive. While more than half of college students (57%) started looking for their summer internships and jobs by March, nearly half (44%) of business majors had already secured their summer jobs and internships by March, compared to less than one in three (29%) non-business majors.

“With the inherent competitiveness of finding jobs in their chosen field, business majors seem to be more focused on their job outlook than other majors,” says Jason Bakker, Director of Marketing for Campus Media Group.

The research pointed to direct communications and career fairs as the dominant means of recruiting college students for jobs and internships. In fact, students were three times more likely to indicate career fair exhibits and direct opt-in e-mails from the company rather than advertising, websites and campus poster campaigns as the best way to reach them.

“This generation is relatively numb to most forms of advertising,” says Bakker. “Though general branding of your company is very important in staying top-of-mind among students, one-to-one interactions are really what students are hungry for in today’s economic climate.”

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