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The four key steps for campus recruitment

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Before we deep-dive into the four-step campus recruitment process, it is worth noting that there are two ways to campus recruiting: in-person and virtually.

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  • In-person campus recruiting: It refers to physically going to a college campus during campus fairs to engage and educate candidates about your organization and screen them.
  • Virtual campus recruiting: It is a form of online campus recruitment that leverages the power of digital tools to onboard candidates. The preferred mode of the channel includes AI-based tools that offer email and text messaging capabilities to connect with students and interview them. Note that organizations can also ask students to pre-record video interviews for greater convenience.

Plus, you need to remember that your campus recruitment strategy needs to be different for tech and non-tech roles. In simpler words, a homogenous strategy will fail. Here's how you can drive a rock-solid campus recruitment strategy for non-tech hires and tech hires separately.

The Five-Step Recruitment Process for Non-Tech Hires

Step 1: Create a talent pool and establish career fair goals

First and foremost, you'll need to understand what's the ultimate goal of conducting the campus recruitment drive. Then, you'll need to create a list of colleges/schools to recruit from--based on your relationship with the on-campus organizations and the career centers. When making the college list, make sure to factor in elements such as geography and industry. You should also track university partnerships to get quality hires. A campus recruitment software can help you in this regard by providing insights into which universities are offering quality hires over time.

Step 2: Choose the right representatives and engage candidates impactfully.

Next, you'll need to think about the various unique opportunities at your disposal to drive student interaction. You want to leave a great first impression. Hence, your company representatives should be enthusiastic, outgoing, and knowledgeable about the brand. To engage with students, create an alumni program where your employee is an ex-alumnus from the target school. This can skyrocket the potential candidate's trust and confidence in the company as they will be able to relate better with their 'senior' (for lack of a better term).

Step 3: Promote the recruitment drive on diverse platforms.

For a winning campus recruitment plan, you need to create the right buzz before it begins. You can share registration and sign-up links on social media using campus recruitment software. Ensure to embed a 'share' option and encourage potential candidates to share it on their social media handles. You can also create a dedicated section on the careers segment of your website and allow candidates to upload their resumes and register from beforehand. Finally, you can create a customized email campaign that promotes the career event creatively. Make sure to rope in your marketing team to streamline the marketing process. For inspiration, take a look at PwC Singapore's 'Ask me anything' campus recruitment video, which offers useful information that candidates will not find anywhere else on the internet:

Step 4: Use the right software to streamline the hiring process.

Invest in campus recruitment software to gather candidate information, screen and interview the top candidates, and extend an offer letter. Make sure that your onboarding process is value-driven, logical, and clearly outlines the benefits that will come with the job. Campus recruitment apps and software empower brands to interact with candidates at the click of a button. Plus, they can filter candidates and follow-up with the right fit at an accelerated time pace.

Step 5: Analyze campus recruitment metrics:

Finally, you need to evaluate the successes and failures of the campus recruitment process to gauge where there's room for improvement. The campus recruitment software can provide insights into areas of weakness and help you to improve the process.

Next up, we will discuss helpful strategies to recruit tech hires on campus (or online).

Also read: How Netflix, Unilever, and Roche reduce time-to-hire for high-volume roles

Unique Recruitment Strategies for Tech Hires

While most of the campus recruitment steps outlined above stand true for tech hires, there are a few initiatives you can try to engage with them better:

  • Conduct hackathons and contests throughout the year: If you want to know your target base better, you can conduct fun and interactive hackathons and contests. Make sure to partner with the university's career center and create an event that's perfectly attuned to your company's industry type. You can take a cue from Spotify's hackathon, which conducted a hackathon called “Diversify” in 2015 to attract a 50/50 female to male participant ratio--as opposed to it being male-dominated.
  • Drive a recruitment event that's benefit-focused: In 2017, Amazon conducted the largest recruiting event in the US, an event that attracted around 20,000 applicants. Why this event worked was because Amazon highlighted the multiple benefits that the new hires stood to gain--from pre-payment for tuition to medical benefits. To top it off, the brand offered guided tours of the facility to the potential hires and set up interviews in tents.
  • Participate in DeveloperWeek as IBM did: DeveloperWeek is a week-long event which attracts more than 8,000 attendees. It is considered to be one of the world’s largest developer exposition and technology conference series. The idea is to connect with high-quality talent that's taking part in the conference and interact with people via multiple events such as developer conferences, hackathons, and the hiring mixer.

The learning:

As simplistic as the campus recruitment process sounds, there are numerous factors and touchpoints to consider for it to be a resounding success, especially if you're hiring for technical and non-technical hires. Each segment has different elements to consider. It is also important to keep an eye out for the emerging campus recruitment trends taking place every year. As a pro tip, to make the most out of your recruitment drive, you can complement your on-campus activities with digital campus recruitment. Plus, keep a pulse on the latest trends for campus recruitment