If you’re in charge of your organization’s college recruiting strategy, then it should come as no surprise that today’s most in-demand students are usually snapped up well before they don a cap and gown. Forbes explored the importance of recruiting in the fall — as opposed to waiting until spring semester — including some good ideas on how to stand out among college students today.
Equally important to being on campus at the right time is ensuring that your key messages will resonate with this audience. You can start by understanding what matters most to new graduates when they are launching a career. According to NACE’s 2014 Student Survey, which nearly 44,000 students responded to, it’s all about personal growth. More specifically, a whopping 92% of students said that the chance for personal growth was either “very important” or “extremely important” to them when considering a job.
Students also cite the importance of job security. This makes perfect sense given the economic challenges they have witnessed as they became adults and the difficulty their generation has experienced in landing stable professional jobs. Rounding out the top three attributes is “friendly co-workers.” It’s most likely that this reflects the team-oriented nature of millennials who want to feel they can approach their colleagues, especially those who are more experienced, for guidance and mentoring.
What may surprise you is that, as a whole, they’re less concerned with having a high starting salary — only 52% of students indicated that this was “very important or “extremely important.” The least important attributes include “green” company, casual atmosphere, a location close to home or in a diverse and tolerant community and a well-recognized company name.
So, the next time you’re tempted to start your campus presentation with statistics about your organization’s green practices or how prominent you are in your industry, consider focusing instead on the stories that these prospective employees truly care about. Show them how younger workers are growing personally at your company and how they’re thriving as they work alongside open and friendly colleagues every day.
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