Tips & Tricks for Recruiting Top Campus Talent in the COVID Era

As we continue to work remotely in-person meetings, networking sessions and recruitment events have come to a complete halt. Companies need to maintain their employer brand remotely to stay connected to students. Now more than ever, employers need to think outside of traditional recruitment methods to not only attract the best student talent but to connect with students during a time when they need it most.  

Below are some ideas to help employers improve overall brand awareness and preference within the student community:

  • Case Competitions

These competitions can be done remotely, where students can solve real business problems to showcase their abilities. Competitions can be live or in the form of a ‘take-home’ assignment with a final presentation to a group of judges from your company.  To attract students to participate, offer prizes such as: employment, cash, an exclusive networking event or an opportunity to meet (online) with executives or hiring decision-makers. 

  • Guest Lectures

Have a member of your team pair up with a relevant program. As an expert in the field, you can work with students to provide insight, create a positive reputation for your company and create meaningful connections. 

  • Networking Sessions

Replace in person recruitment events with online platforms such as Zoom or Remo.  During these events you can give an overview on working at the company, what your culture is like and host a Q&A.  If your budget allows, sending registrants ‘thank you for attending’ boxes with branded face masks and other items is a great way to make students feel connected and keep your company top of mind.  

For the case competitions, guest lectures and networking sessions think outside of the box when it comes to topics.  Think of topics that will make students feel like they are making a difference!

For students and alumni looking for work, there is more uncertainty than ever before. With a number of hiring freezes, mass company layoffs and so many other factors students and recent graduates are unsure about their futures. An excellent way to maintain a competitive advantage to remove the uncertainty when recruiting top campus talent is to provide transparency;  

  • Transparency in Hiring

Share publicly what your current hiring status is. Being honest about timelines, how COVID-19 has impacted your hiring and what applicants can expect from you will prove your dedication to creating trusting relationships from day one. 

  • Transparency in Workload

Remote work makes work-life balance hard to maintain. The lines are hard to draw and it’s important to be honest about the demands of the job. Some things that should be shared are; if your hours are flexible, if the job requires some nights/weekends and what level of work needs to be maintained. It’s now more important than ever to be honest with your applicants about what your expectations are of them. 

  • Transparency in Work Conditions

Being up front about work from home plans now, and in the future is crucial.  Will there be a return-to-work call, will applicants be able to work from home indefinitely or will there be a hybrid of the two? If as an organization you don’t know, saying that is just as important. There is so much uncertainty today that being transparent about where employees will be working now and in the future is another step toward building trust with your future employees. 

Getting creative with your recruitment and the ability to provide stability, honesty, consistency and support as an employer is how you can set yourself apart to attract the best campus talent in the COVID era.

If you would like to learn more about employer branding and how we can help you build a resilient corporate culture, call Blu Ivy today at 647-308-2352.

This blog was authored by Managing Director, Stacy Parker

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