In May of every year, thousands of college students bedecked in elegant robes attend a graduation ceremony where they finally take possession of a diploma that they have spent the last four or five years working toward. Shortly after this happy occasion, most of these bright young hopefuls begin contacting potential employers and flooding company email inboxes with resumes—amounting to a deluge of data that recruiters must sift through.
Recent college grads can be an invaluable asset to an organization, but they also pose unique recruiting challenges due to their inexperience. Generally, they do not have a significant track record in the workplace, which makes it difficult to evaluate the skills they might be able to bring to a company. Nonetheless, college grads are a goldmine you can’t afford to ignore. Here are some tips for recruiting from this demographic.
Get on Social Media – As a recruiter, you probably spend much of your working day trawling through Facebook and LinkedIn—and that’s exactly what you should be doing. When it comes to recruiting from the millennial generation, however, social media is extremely important. This is, after all, the generation that grew up with social media and considers it virtually inseparable from everyday life.
When searching for recent college grads, you simply must be able to exploit the networking potential of social media—and, of course, a solid applicant tracking system comes with social media integration that can be particularly useful here.
Connect with Millennial Interests – You don’t have to start listening to Selena Gomez albums, but you should understand that recent grads have a different set of priorities than older workers. They tend not to be especially preoccupied with health care plans, family leave policies, and Individual Retirement Accounts.
So what are they looking for? One study found that 74% of millennials value “flexible work schedules.”1 They also value the opportunity to spend time with friends and family.
Look at Potential – When dealing with recent grads, it’s essential to judge them by what they can learn to do, rather than what they have already learned. A candidate who seems like a team player can prove to be a more valuable employee than one with a sterling GPA. Skills can be taught—personality cannot.