How companies can attract the best college talent

Companies hire fresh graduates to infuse a young and fresh perspective in the organisation. Engaging the best and the brightest requires employers to stand out from the crowd. The millenials and Gen Z-ers have a revised set of expectations from organisations. Company culture, communication, employer branding, career growth and the right fitment have become imperatives for attracting the right talent.

Let’s take a look at what fresh graduates expect from organisations.

What college grads are looking for

To attract top talent, companies need to align with their expectations, and consequently may need to rethink recruitment strategies at many levels. Well-established brands have challenges too, as brand awareness is just one of the criteria that college grads look at while applying for jobs or making the decision to get on board. While young graduates expect good compensation, it’s not at the top of the list. Work culture is high on the list of criteria for employer evaluation. Young job seekers also want to be sure that they will be a good “fit” in the organisation.

Gen Z are a more aware generation — cultural fitment, a demonstrated commitment of the company towards sustainability and climate change, diversity and inclusion are important to them. Companies need proactive strategies to fulfil these expectations.

How companies can attract the best college talent

Getting fresh talent on board

Attracting the crème de la crème requires focused effort. Besides, campus recruitment cannot be done overnight. Add to these the fact that the pandemic has brought about significant disruption to the workplace. The work environment has changed; so have expectations from both employers and employees. While virtual hiring has facilitated a wider candidate pool, it has also forced companies to relook at their recruitment processes and strategies. Here are some tips to get the best college talent:

  • Send a compelling message:
  • Attracting college talent requires companies to align with the thoughts and needs of the youth. Develop a strong Employee Value Proposition (EVP) and make sure that it meets the expectations of young people.
    Update websites, brand pages and career pages; highlight EVP, career development, company culture and continuous learning opportunities.

  • Get involved early:
  • Understand the college ecosystem and set up a holistic university recruitment program that will help with focused campus recruitment. Building relationships with colleges by sponsoring contests, field visits and college fests helps build employer brand on campus. Internships, rotation days and apprenticeship programs may hook potential employees. Organisations can showcase recent college hires and alumni, highlight their achievements and bring them on as recruitment evangelists to further their cause.

  • Simplify the recruitment process:
  • With remote and hybrid work, virtual hiring and remote recruitment are now here to stay. Particularly, large volume hiring stands to benefit with online campus recruitment platforms. Companies can cast a wider net and reach out to candidates across geographical regions. Deploying a virtual campus hiring solution offers an improved candidate experience and can help get top talent on board. Automated campus hiring workflows can save crucial time and effort, and result in fewer drop-offs.

  • Identify skills and conduct meaningful assessments:
  • With a huge pool of diverse talent available, employers should not get lost in the process of identifying the right talent. Skills, cultural fitment, aptitude, capability and learning agility need to be evaluated objectively, based on a set of criteria. Soft skills, attitude and behavioural aspects need to be assessed. Many of these assessments can be automated and conducted online asynchronously using AI-based campus hiring tools.

  • Actively engage online:
  • Social media is a powerful way of connecting to college graduates, and companies should leverage platforms such as Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn to promote their employer brand. Hosting live sessions to interact with their best employees and recruitment professionals are ways to engage with potential candidates. Fireside chats, live webinars and virtual career fairs are other ways to grab eyeballs.

Attracting the best talent from colleges may be a labyrinthian affair, but it can be navigated with the help of a structured strategy that starts much before the actual recruitment begins. To a large extent, many of the processes can be simplified by using remote university hiring platforms. Hirepro’s campus hiring workflow is an end-to-end virtual recruitment platform that enables frictionless virtual hiring and offers a superior candidate experience.

Aligning with millennials and Gen Z expectations, reworking processes and using cutting-edge technology will help companies get top graduates and ultimately lead to business growth.