How to Jazz Up Your Summer Recruiting Game

By Danni White on April 30, 2017

Image via Pexels

Now that college classes are out for several months, many students are looking to put their energy, time, and education to good use. While some students prefer to lounge on the beach or whistle away those precious months doing any combination of cool activities, others know that obtaining a summer job or three-month internship holds great benefit for their future lives.

Holding a summer job does several things for students. First, it allows them to earn money and save some of that money for important things such as textbooks or buying their own car. Second, if they are smart, they could start paying off some student loan interest. Third, and this is probably the most obvious, at the end of the summer, they will have some experience that they can place on their resume and eventually parlay into a full-time job after graduation.

As a recruiter, here is the thing to understand: Students, no matter how quirky they look or how glued to their smartphones they are, want to work. And in most cases, they kind of have a feeling about what type of job they will do well in and what they want to go on their resume. Most students simply need someone to guide them through the entire process of decision-making, applying, and onboarding.

Come on, you were a student once, weren’t you? We can’t get all this right on our own.

So, just as students spend an extraordinary amount of time beefing up their resumes, you have to consider spending just as much time jazzing up your recruiting strategies. The type of students you attract will depend on your recruiting techniques and how willing you are to stay up-to-date on what college campuses in your area are looking for.

Here are some tips that may help:

MAKE GOOD USE OF SOCIAL MEDIA

Yeah, all those kids who seem glued to their phones and who look like they could care less about the world are either gaming or on social media. Make sure the company(ies) you’re recruiting for have ample presence on social media sites including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn. (These are the top four, but I’m sure there are others.) Conduct a survey on the college campus to see which social media channels students use the most and then go and pump up visibility on those few channels.

Personally, I have discovered and applied for several awesome jobs because some savvy recruiter simply posted a link on Facebook. If you post it out in the open, students will come.

CONSIDER JOB SHARING

Let’s be honest, summer doesn’t seem to last as long as it did, let’s say, back in the 1960s. These days, students have to return to school at earlier times especially if they are involved in sports or marching bands or research and debate teams. So, that presents a challenge that is easily solvable.

Consider job sharing. This is when you coordinate the schedules of your top candidates, hire two or three for the same job, and allow them to work part-time. This way, a typically full-time job can still get done — just with two or three people. Two dorm buddies who are pursuing the same major and looking for similar opportunities, but one’s a night owl while the other’s a morning person, may just be what you’re looking for.

HAVE TRAINING AVAILABLE BEFOREHAND

Summer help has the same effect on your customers as full-time help. Just because they’re only going to be there for three or so months doesn’t mean they don’t get the same kind of investment in training as your full-time employees. Who knows? They could turn out to be the truly awesome workers that they are and return for full-time employment.

Training them now not only ensures consistency across your employees but gives them good information for any similar work in the future. When I was an intern not too many summers ago, the supervisor ensured I was trained just as well as her full-time workers and I am grateful for that.

DON’T SHOW THEM WHAT THEY’LL GET; SHOW THEM WHAT THEY’LL LEARN

The most driven students are drawn to companies not because of how much they’ll get paid or the benefits but because they want to grow. In a fast paced technologically advanced society, growing and growing fast is essential to staying ahead of the curve.

On the job description, tell students what they can expect to learn from working for your company. If they know they will be able to learn software engineering at your company and their goal is to be a software engineer, they will know that spending time and energy at your company for the next three months will give them an edge on paper and in their classes.

DROP THE “PERFECT SUMMER HIRE” IDEA

In your head, you know this already, but in your heart, you’re still trying to find him or her.

While you certainly should make sure all necessary job requirements are met, you can skip the always nice to have line. For the most part, students are eager to learn, excited about possibilities, have a can-do attitude, and are fast learners. You can fill most of your summer positions if you stop looking for perfect, and start looking for these qualities. Trust me, you’ll find them.

GET INTO THE NETWORK; CONNECT WITH ALUMNI

If you have hired several graduates from a college in your area as full-time employees, they can be your biggest asset in recruiting current students. They can serve as a sounding board for ideas and strategies that will work in filling new positions. Ask them if you can use their names in the recruiting process. “Julie Hayes who graduated from Simon College last year works here” can go a long way.

Additionally, open the door for students to talk to Julie Hayes to get the “inside scoop” about what it is really like working for the company. The students will feel more comfortable asking questions and Julie Hayes may just say the words that seal the deal.

By Danni White

Uloop Writer
Liberty University
Danni White is a developmental psychology graduate student at Liberty University. She works in the digital publishing, media, and technology industries. After this degree, she will go on to work on a PhD in social psychology in which she hopes to do research on perception and social cognition’s impact on human behavior. She hopes to apply this research in corporate HR departments and community-based organizations. In her otherwise limited spare time, she blogs, writes and reads. She loves coffee, sports, music, cooking, meeting new people, and binge watching Netflix.

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