Tips for Recruiting on College Campuses

by guestcontributor on July 16, 2012

There’s no doubt about it. Some of the best, brightest and most eager potential employees are college students. A big part of this reason is due to the fact that they’re focused on going to class so that they can earn a degree that will make them eligible to thrive in the workplace.

However, when it comes to recruiting them, companies definitely need to be as thorough as possible in their approach. Sure, standard job fairs are still a beneficial option, but there are other methods that can be just as, if not more, effective.

If you’re curious about learning some tips on how to persuasively recruit on college campuses, here are five that are sure to bring you some great success.

Be candid. It’s true. We are currently in an employment slump, which makes people really eager to get a job. But eager should not be confused with desperate. So, during the recruitment process, be sure to be as sincere as possible about what your company has to offer; not just its benefits, but any significant disadvantages as well. It will save both you and prospective employees a lot of potential time and frustration by avoiding hiring people who thought the job was something that it really wasn’t.

Be more personal. Some companies are so focused on making a big presentation that they overlook how important it is to spend some one-on-one time with the students. Remember, on a lot of campuses, college students are used to being basically treated like nothing more than “a number”. So, if you want them to feel like joining your company would make them “a part of the family”, make sure you are able to look them individually in the eye (for more than 2 minutes) to personally convey that point.

Be creative. Thanks to technology, there are other ways to recruit someone than to simply refer them to the job postings on your website or by passing out business cards. Consider creative a video blog with footage from an actual staff event or hold an online contest with a prize for the best looking resume and cover letter. If you’re someone who thinks outside of the box with your approach, you’ll draw people who are interested in taking you seriously just from the curiosity factor alone.

Be proactive. These days, giving away some pens with your company’s logo on them and referring college students to your Facebook fan page are not good enough. There are other businesses that have mobile apps for sending in resumes and they incorporate websites like Foursquare and Gowalla in their recruiting process. If all of that sounds a bit foreign to you, then you should definitely do a bit of research into how you can upgrade your knowledge of social media. Remember, college students are modern individuals. A company that is technologically savvy is an attractive one.

Do follow-ups (and make sure that you follow through). Suppose you received a resume from someone who is in the process of earning a master of science in strategic leadership degree, but you already have hired the employees that you need for this time. Some companies will simply send out a generalized form letter stating that they received the resume and will keep it on file. However, if you want to stand out as a business that really cares about the people that they connect with, give the individual a phone call or handwrite a note. It leaves a lasting impression with that person. Plus, being that word of mouth is powerful, there’s a great chance that s/he will, in turn, tell others about how professional and courteous you were. So, even if you don’t get an employee out of the situation, at least you will at least earn a few potential customers.

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