The key to hiring diverse students and recent grads is to be intentional and targeted

Posted November 13, 2020 by

David Owens, Director of Campus Recruiting at national staffing and recruitment firm Addison Group, recently shared with me some tips for how employers can hire more diverse students for internships and recent graduates for entry-level jobs.

I think that it is worth noting that, according to David, the tips come from tactics and strategies used by Addison Group, so they’re not just talking-the-talk. They’re also walking-the-walk.

According to David,

The key to hiring more diverse students and graduates is being intentional and targeted with the outreach. Look at how you’ve recruited in the past and what improvements can be made to intentionally reach groups of various identities. Another piece of advice to employers in their approach to hiring more diverse students is to be transparent. Be transparent about your organization, your people, your intentions, and your process. We aren’t perfect, no organization is; but as long as you are authentic and transparent in your approach, you will mitigate any miscommunication or confusion from the candidate’s perspective.

To hire more diverse students it’s invaluable to have in-depth and strategic partnerships with colleges and universities. Consider where there may be gaps in representation in these partnerships. Do you recruit from any Historically Black Colleges and Universities, Tribal Colleges and Universities or Hispanic-Serving Institutions? It can be helpful to create a “short-list” of targeted universities, which is what we at Addison Group are practicing. This helps us determine how to strategically engage with the select student population and articulate our company offerings in a way that resonates.

I also recommend forming partnerships with diverse student organizations and clubs that have a strong presence on-campus. If you’re looking for entry-level engineers, work with organizations like the National Society of Black Engineers or the Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers, for example. These organizations will help you connect directly with students and candidates that you may not normally reach. 

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