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Campus Hiring   | 8 Min Read

5 Ways to Build an Effective Campus Recruitment Strategy

Written By Ankur Tandon

As the recruitment season sneaks in, India's chilly job market seems to be warming up. Campus placements shoot in with its ever-growing pace.

Any going-to-be-graduated candidate, at this point of time, apart from being excited, also is worried about finding an awesome job that will pay well and where he’ll be satisfied. Majority of candidates, on asking which company would they would choose or like to work for, mention the ones among Fortune 500 or the provocative brands we hear and read consistently.

Well, there could be cool start-ups and organizations with amazing culture too, among the top priority organizations of the students to work for. All they need is to invest in an engagement strategy and for that matter, make it an always-on initiative, not just a concealed thought that suffers an early fall.

Campus Recruitment Strategy

Thousands of organizations in India today hire more than 1 lakh graduates on campus every year in India. On-campus recruitment drives are safer and better chance for candidates to decide for campus placements as opposed to attempting fortunes in off-campus recruitment drives. The major plus point being candidates need not travel to any other locations, instead companies approach them, which in turn saves a lot of time, energy and resources and hence is preferred by the students.

Students see Campus Recruitment as a good job opportunity, with a very low level of competition leading to attaining easy entry-level jobs, where even references are not necessary. 

The reality is, today’s graduates possess totally a different set of requirements and plans as compared to the earlier ones. So, this is the high time to speed up the Campus Recruitment process with some really innovative strategies.

Here are a few campus hiring strategies that every organization should incorporate if they are serious about recruiting talent from the campus.

How to do Campus Recruitment?

Campus Recruitment Strategy

Top 5 Strategies for an Effective Campus Recruitment 

1. Identify Hiring Needs:

A hiring manager is always in the search for quality employees which could, in turn really add value to the organization. On a broader side, it may seem as if the hiring need inculcates as and when an employee leaves the firm, or when there is some kind or departmental shifts.

Before setting up the arena in campus with the placard depicting “Help Wanted”, take the time to consider and analyze overall hiring needs.

Long before you arrive at campus for hiring process, recruiting managers must have a solid grasp on what they are hoping to achieve. Recruitment are done for skills and knowledge, not just to add more bodies. This could start by asking yourself what your current staffing necessities are, and what they will be in six months to a year.

Additionally, consider what the key departments or potential positions are that your organization is hoping to fill and whether any of these groups could utilize an internship or co-operative education program. At long last, take a glance at any skills or proficiencies that you're experiencing difficulty finding in your existing talent pool.

2. Choose The Right Place

Waves after waves of graduates are getting ready to enter the market. In that case, one of the most important parts of a strategic approach includes creating a target school list, a nerve-wracking task.

When it comes to deciding which schools to target, first focus on determining the type of skills you’re looking for in optimal hires. Next, look into which schools have expertise in academic programs that match those functional needs.

For instance, an engineering consulting firm will probably need to join forces with a school/college that is known for its uncommon engineering program. Or on the other hand, if an organization battles to discover strong IT experts for its suitable department, banding together with a college that is exceptional at its technical program is a keen method to enhance hiring success around there.

Where Do Top Companies Hire From (based on College's Ranking)

where do top companies hire from (based on college ranking)

Source: Linkedin

Also, when assessing campuses, try not to forget considering accreditation, previous year placements or post-grad placements that could give a better insight into the varieties of students in different campuses.

Considering your existing employees is yet another great approach to target the colleges. They could be the great brand ambassadors when it comes to attracting potential candidate.

Well, if brand value is the only the basis of your campus research, then it’s just chasing fewer candidates against a large pool of talents. If you’re planning to expand the reach, use your resources carefully to target the right campuses.

3. Create an Immortal Impression

While attracting the right talent, to make the first and everlasting impression must be the ultimate goal for an organization. Talking about the impression, an effective pre-placement talk would be the first step in campus hiring process.

It must be taken care that the role of the individual joining your organization is something that makes him/her feel important.

Here are some of the things that an ideal Pre-Placement talk should cover:

  • About your organization- What makes it unique?

  • The opportunity it carries for the employees

  • The kind of projects your organization deals with

  • The work culture

  • Salary along with perks and benefits

  • How can the candidates make an impact in this role

  • All of these, followed by doubts and queries session

Well, the extent of creativity and innovation varies from organization to organization. More Creative and extensive be the PPTs, more be the attraction and hence enhanced be the quality of hires.

Apart from this, many a time, a poor portrayal of what an imminent candidate can anticipate from the job can set wrong desires thus, prompting a higher attrition rate in course of time. Amid campus placements, most candidates have the freedom of looking over different job openings from organizations.

"On an average, every corporate job opening attracts 250 resume. But only 4 to 6 of these people will be called for an interview, and only 1 of those will be offered a job."

Another source of attraction for candidates are the job descriptions. Inaccurate or outdated job descriptions can negatively affect recruiting and productivity, are a detriment to the employer-employee relationship and pose serious legal risks for the company.

With a well-designed job description that is interesting enough for candidates, an organization can for sure hold the edge with regards to them settling on a decision. Well, adding value to the job descriptions returns higher rate of candidates’ attraction towards the job role.

“You never get a second chance to make the first impression.” Use that wisely when it comes to campus recruitment. The next great strategy is to attract the campus students.

4. Attract Students On-Campus

“There is a lot of work we do in our engagement at campuses which is about influencing the minds of the youngsters in the market,” said SV Nathan, chief talent officer at Deloitte. 

In the space of talent acquisition at colleges, there is a very smart and formidable strategy incorporated by the consulting firm Deloitte, much of which is centered on building the campus brand in order to stay significant to the consistently changing impression of the students.

The motivations of these ages are completely unique in relation to the former. They need to work for companies that focus on making the world a better place and promoting a social and fun workplace. On campus, exhibit your workplace culture, your people and activities in a true way.

Campus Hiring Strategy

A strong social presence, in this age, is a mind-blowing way to attract the talent pool. Create short, captivating bits of content that can sustain on your careers site and link to your social pages.

The campus recruitment process may also include online events as well, which could be a great source to attract the talent pool. Incorporating Twitter chats and Facebook live streaming along with online contests or competitions inculcate among the students a kind of interest and attention towards the company.

"84% would consider leaving their current job if offered a job by company with an excellent reputation"

Alumni volunteers ought to be an essential piece of every event, assisting recruiters and making them a part of the group. Regardless of whether it's staffing a booth at a college, or controlling a visit group around campus, alumni offer students a congenial minister to connect with.

Also, if the college alumni accompanying the hiring team is at some prestigious post in the company, it gives the candidates a sense of worth joining that organization.

Students can very easily tell which are real and which aren’t. Spotlight on what distinguishes your company in a genuine and authentic way. These strategies, if incorporated present the company as a brand looking for fresher with exciting ideas.

5. Incorporate Automated Assessments

“When employers do hire from college, the evidence suggests that academic skills are not their primary concern,” says Peter Cappelli, A Wharton Professor.

Grades or CGPA has been, since long, the basic criteria to filter the large talent pool of candidates. The recruiters must keep in notice the fact that not always a student with good grades in 10th and 12th along with a great record in college will suffice the need for the job role, while on the contrary, a student with comparatively lower grades can.

relative importance of attributes in evaluating graduates for hire

Source- https://www.agnesscott.edu/internship-and-career-development/students/internships.html

Although the introduction of automated online assessments has helped reduce the burden of test administration, with instant detailed reports of the candidates. The objective approach has also helped eliminating the human error in grading, minimizing hiring and training costs, hence improving hiring decisions with minimal risk of bad hires.

Campus Hiring Strategy - stats on rise of data driven recruitment - Campus Hiring Process

Well, the previous methods for recruitment incorporated specialized tests, one-on-one interviews, presentations or a very well combination of all these. All these characterize whether the individual can carry out the job.

Again, there are tests that measure the genuine behavior of the candidate and determines if he/she fits in the job role or is the correct fit. Also, these help the company to find out the leadership attributes, stress management skills, social behavior, motivation and numerous other fundamental attributes, which may, in turn, proves far beneficial when it comes to hiring.

Companies like Mettl provide a detailed assessment aiming to test the behavioral aspect of the candidates along with the obvious cognitive and domain based skills. A candidate can be judged more appropriately by making use of situation based problems, psychometric tests along with cognitive tests. Even dark personalities of the candidates may prove helpful in making reliable and firm hiring decisions.

“Tell me something about yourself.”, “Where do you see yourself after 5 years down the line”, and several more questions. These are the common questions each and every company on campus hiring asks to the hopeful candidates. The interesting part is, each and every candidate, irrespective of which grade-block he/she belongs, or what extent is he/she proficient for that job role, start practicing these at least two months beforehand, or in fact they by heart those.

Well, this isn’t a bad thing, though.

One of the best ways to cope up with these situations could be the involvement of assessments which include each and every aspect of the candidate. The detailed introspection of the candidate may come via these kinds of assessments.

In this placement season, students in campuses are tensed and worried about getting placed in the organizations of their preference, so are the HR and recruiting managers when it comes to hiring effectively.

With these 5 Campus Recruitment strategies in place, you’re prepared to begin connecting with the upcoming age of star talent.

Master Campus Hiring in 6 Simple Steps

Topics: Campus Hiring

Originally published August 22 2019,updated October 12 2019

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