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A guide to inclusive campus recruitment practices

Recruitment | 6 Min Read

A guide to inclusive campus recruitment practices


Inclusive hiring means actively and intentionally hiring individuals from diverse backgrounds, including hiring people with different abilities, experiences, and perspectives. This process aims not just to hire diverse candidates to fulfill legal obligations but to create a workforce that promotes diversity, equity, and inclusion in the organization.

Hiring diverse candidates is not only a moral imperative but is also believed to contribute to an innovative and productive workplace. By bringing together individuals with different perspectives and experiences, organizations can better address the needs of a diverse customer base, foster creativity, and enhance problem-solving capabilities.


Why organizations should focus on hiring diverse candidates

Having diverse candidates as part of the workforce offers numerous benefits to organizations. Here are some key reasons why inclusive hiring is considered crucial:

1. Diversity of perspectives

Hiring diverse candidates brings together individuals with different backgrounds, experiences, and perspectives. This diversity in the workforce fosters a rich exchange of ideas, which leads to more innovative solutions to problems.

2. Improved decision-making

A diverse workforce is often more creative and innovative. Such teams are also more likely to make better decisions. When individuals with different viewpoints collaborate, they are more likely to consider a broader range of factors, leading to well-rounded and thoughtful decision-making.

3. Increased employee engagement

An inclusive environment where everyone feels valued and respected is the base for a diverse workforce. Employees are more likely to feel engaged and motivated when they work in an inclusive environment where they feel valued and respected. This contributes to higher levels of job satisfaction and productivity.

4. Better understanding of customer needs

A diverse workforce is better equipped to understand and meet the needs of a diverse customer base. This is particularly important in industries where customer preferences and demographics vary widely.

5. Positive organizational reputation

Companies that prioritize and demonstrate a commitment to inclusive hiring practices, be it diversity campus recruiting or otherwise, often build a positive reputation. This enhances the organization's brand, attracts top talent, and appeals to a broader customer base. In many countries, laws promote equal opportunity and prohibit discrimination in the workplace. Hiring diverse candidates helps organizations comply with legal requirements. But apart from just meeting legal aspects, diversity hiring also aligns with principles of social responsibility. Furthermore, it is a strategic approach that impacts organizational culture, performance, and goodwill in the market.


Diversity and inclusion recruitment best practices for campus hiring

Diversity campus recruiting is the best way for organizations to create a diverse and talented workforce. Some best practices for campus hiring that organizations can follow are:


1. Relationships with diverse student groups

a) Foster meaningful connections

Establishing relationships involves actively engaging with diverse student groups to build authentic connections. Attend meetings, seminars, and social events to understand different communities’ unique needs and concerns.

b) Customize outreach

Tailor outreach efforts to resonate with specific demographic groups. Understanding the cultural nuances and interests of various student organizations helps communicate effectively and demonstrates a genuine interest in diversity.

c) Take collaborative initiatives

Explore collaborative initiatives with student organizations. This might involve sponsoring events, offering workshops, or providing resources that support the goals and missions of these groups.


2. Inclusive job descriptions and marketing materials in

a) Use inclusive language

Use inclusive language in job descriptions that welcomes candidates from all backgrounds. Avoid gendered or culturally biased language and focus on the skills and qualifications essential for the role.

b) Showcase diversity in materials

Visual representation matters. Include images and testimonials in marketing materials that showcase a diverse and inclusive workplace. This can help prospective candidates see themselves as part of the organization.

c) Highlight inclusive practices

Mention the organization’s commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion. Share specific initiatives, policies, or programs demonstrating the company’s dedication to fostering an inclusive workplace.


3. Diverse recruitment teams

a) Ensure representation

Ensure that recruitment teams themselves are diverse. Individuals from different backgrounds bring unique perspectives to the hiring process, which can contribute to unbiased decision-making.

b) Provide inclusivity training

Provide training to recruitment teams on the importance of inclusivity and how to recognize and overcome unconscious biases. Equip them with tools to conduct fair and objective assessments.

c) Encourage diversity in leadership

Encourage diversity not only in recruitment teams but also in leadership positions within the organization. This sends a strong message about the value placed on diverse perspectives at all levels.


4. Unbiased recruitment processes

a) Hold unconscious bias training

Implement regular training sessions for recruiters and hiring managers to raise awareness of unconscious biases. This training should focus on recognizing and mitigating bias throughout the recruitment process.

b) Have structured interviews

Standardize interview questions and evaluation criteria to ensure consistency and fairness. Structured interviews help minimize subjective judgments and evaluate all candidates based on the same criteria.

c) Introduce diversity metrics

Introduce metrics to monitor the diversity of candidates at each stage of the recruitment process. This data can help identify potential areas of bias and measure the success of diversity initiatives.


5. Campus partnerships and collaborations

a) Develop strategic collaborations

Collaborate strategically with career services offices, faculty, and other campus stakeholders. Develop partnerships that facilitate a more comprehensive and inclusive approach to campus recruitment.

b) Attend a variety of events

Beyond career fairs, participate in various campus events to engage with students from different academic disciplines and backgrounds. This broader engagement can uncover hidden talents and diverse skill sets.

c) Establish advisory boards

Another way to boost campus diversity recruiting is by establishing advisory boards with representatives from diverse student groups. Seek their input on recruitment strategies and listen to their perspectives on making the campus environment more inclusive.


6. Internship and mentorship programs

a) Tailor internship programs

Design internship programs that provide meaningful experiences for students from underrepresented groups. Ensure that these programs offer opportunities for professional development and mentorship.

b) Implement diverse mentorship initiatives

Implement mentorship programs that pair students with professionals with similar backgrounds or experiences. This creates a supportive network and helps students navigate the workforce’s challenges.

c) Showcase success stories

Highlight success stories of individuals from diverse backgrounds who have thrived within the organization through internships or mentorship programs. This can inspire confidence and interest among potential candidates.


7. Inclusive campus visits 

a) Tailor presentations

Customize campus presentations to address diverse student populations’ specific needs and concerns. This may involve discussing inclusive policies, affinity groups, and other initiatives that promote diversity.

b) Hold interactive sessions

Foster an interactive environment during campus visits. Q&A sessions, panel discussions, or networking events allow students to ask questions and learn more about the organization’s commitment to inclusion.

c) Designate diversity ambassadors

Designate diversity ambassadors within the organization to participate in campus visits. These ambassadors can share their experiences and insights, providing a relatable perspective for potential candidates.


8. Accessible recruitment events

a) Ensure accessibility

Ensure that all recruitment events are physically accessible and provide accommodation for individuals with disabilities. This may include wheelchair ramps, sign language interpreters, and accessible materials.

b) Provide virtual options

Offer virtual options for recruitment events to accommodate students who may face challenges attending in person. Virtual events can increase accessibility and reach a broader audience. Organizations can try Mercer | Mettl’s online campus hiring solution to empower talent decisions.


9. Data collection and analysis

a) Ensure demographic tracking

Collect and analyze data related to the demographics of candidates at various stages of the recruitment process. This data can help identify areas where diversity may be lacking and measure the impact of DEI initiatives.

b) Establish feedback loops

Establish feedback mechanisms to gather input from candidates about their recruitment experience. Use this feedback to refine and improve campus recruitment efforts’ inclusivity continually.

c) Conduct transparent reporting

Transparently report on diversity metrics and the outcomes of campus recruitment efforts. This demonstrates accountability and showcases a commitment to continuous improvement.



The advantages of hiring diverse candidates extend beyond the impact on recruitment statistics. A diverse workforce creates a work environment that fosters creativity, innovation, and a harmonious workplace culture. Employees working in such organizations feel seen, heard, and valued for their contributions.

Organizations seeking campus recruitment focusing on diversity can leverage Mercer | Mettl’s end-to-end virtual campus hiring solutions. Mercer | Mettl’s online campus hiring solution empowers talent decisions for organizations, helping them accurately identify candidate fit and potential for success.



How do you promote diversity and inclusion in recruitment?

How does a diverse and inclusive workplace attract prospective new employees?

How do you create an inclusive interview environment?

Originally published January 2 2024, Updated January 2 2024

Written by

Harsh Vardhan Sharma, with 6 years of content writing expertise across diverse B2B and B2C verticals, excels in crafting impactful content for broad audiences. Beyond work, he finds joy in reading, traveling, and watching movies.

About This Topic

Campus hiring is the process of recruiting fresh graduates from colleges. Campus recruitment starts with campus selection, following which a recruitment team visits campuses for engagement activities, candidate screening and interviewing.

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