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The latest news, trends and information to help you with your recruiting efforts.

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Posted May 29, 2019 by

Why are more students reneging on their job acceptances?

A recent discussion in a listserv moderated by the National Association of Colleges and Employers was about an upward trend that some employers are seeing in the number of candidates who are reneging on their acceptances for both internship and entry-level jobs. One employer shared that they typically see four to five percent renege but this year that has jumped to more than eight percent.

Another employer helpfully shared that they’re also seeing more reneges and speculated that students “seem to be accepting offers as a back-up plan and then continuing the recruiting process throughout the year”. That employer is getting a much higher number of reneges within a week of the scheduled start date, blamed the students, and expressed hope that career services would start counseling students more about why they should not renege on job offers.

A third employer confirmed that they too are seeing higher renege rates but offered the following ideas: “(1) it continues to be a hot job market, (2) more companies are putting focus effort on early career talent, and (3) rapidly advancing / evolving technologies for employers and students are bringing more awareness efficiency (arguably) to the campus recruiting market.”

Another factor that I suspect is playing a role in the increased percentage of candidate reneges is the very long-time — and sometimes increasingly long — between when the candidate first meets with the employer and receives a job offer until the date when they actually start work.

It wasn’t all that long ago when the bulk of on-campus recruiting was late September through mid-November with offers taking weeks to be made. Now, it isn’t at all unusual to see employers interviewing at the beginning of September, making offers of employment in the interview room, and demanding a yes/no decision within days. Backed into a corner, a student would be irrational to decline this “bird in the hand” offer in favor of maybe getting a better offer days, weeks, or even months later a/k/a two in the bush.

Then, accepted offer in hand, some employers will essentially go radio silent and have little to no substantive contact with the student for months. Maybe the occasional email here or phone call there, but the intensity of the relationship goes from passionate to what is minimally required, and sometimes even less. Is it any wonder that the student loses their excitement and is open to reconsidering their acceptance?

To the employers who are frustrated by the reneges, let’s get creative about the entire process. What is within your control? Does your recruiting cycle really need to be driven by a fall/winter schedule that has existed since the 1950’s? Would it make more sense to look at alternative means to engage with, extend offers to, and continue to engage with students? 

Put another way, if an epidemic or other such natural or even manmade disaster were to prevent your team from flying out to college campuses around the country, how else could you recruit your next generation of leaders? Maybe look at those contingency plans — or create some — and then put them into place on a pilot basis. Maybe, just maybe, some of those contingency plans will deliver better candidates faster and for less money than the process many organizations have followed since “I like Ike” was a commonly heard campaign slogan.

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Posted May 27, 2019 by

Paid vs unpaid internships are key to landing a well-paying job upon graduation

One of the most basic factors separating students who find it relatively easy to find a well-paying job upon graduation from those who end up unemployed or underemployed is whether the students had internships or not and whether those internships were paid or unpaid.

According to results of the Class of 2019 Student Survey from the National Association of Colleges and Employers, “more than half of all graduating seniors who applied for a full-time job—53.2 percent—received at least one job offer. Within this group, 57.5 percent of students who had an internship and 43.7 percent of graduating seniors who did not have an internship received a job offer.”

In addition, the students who completed at least one internship prior to graduation were significantly more likely to receive multiple job offers for positions upon graduation. For those who completed at least one internship, the average student received 1.17 job offers. Those without an internship received 16 percent fewer job offers: an average of only 0.98 per student.

Another key factor was whether the internship was paid or unpaid. Many legal experts believe that unpaid internships are illegal unless the employer is a governmental or non-profit entity. But just because something may be illegal doesn’t mean that it doesn’t happen. Just think about the last time you drove a car. Almost everyone breaks at least one law every time they drive, whether that’s failing to come to a complete stop at a controlled intersection or driving even one mile per hour over the speed limit.

The impact of internship pay status was evident as well as 66.4 percent of According to NACE, 66.4 percent of class of 2019 graduates who had a paid internship received a job offer. On the other hand, just 43.7 percent of unpaid interns were offered a job. In other words, if you only graduate with an unpaid internship and your friend graduates with a similar but paid internship, she is 34 percent more likely to receive at least one job offer upon graduation. Ouch.

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Posted May 20, 2019 by

2019 job market best for college grads since 2017

Want more evidence that the job market facing this year’s college grads is the best in years? Actually, the best in 12 years, if you want to get technical.

According to the Class of 2019 Student Survey by the National Association of Colleges and Employers, graduating college seniors who had applied for full-time jobs received an average of 1.10 job offers, the highest rate of average job offers in 12 years.

That students who are merely applying for jobs are, on average, receiving more than one job offer is consistent with NACE’s Job Outlook 2019 Spring Update, which reported that U.S. employers plan to hire 10.7 percent more graduates from the class of 2019 than they did from the class of 2018.

Posted January 09, 2019 by

Identifying talent through internships and co-ops ranked as most important by employers of students and recent grads

A pretty common question that we get at College Recruiter is, “What do employers care about?” Sometimes, candidates are asking because they want to know how they can become better qualified or better communication their existing skillset. And sometimes we’re asked by other employers who are considering creating or improving their college and university relations programs.

A recent survey of employer members of the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) indicated that those mostly large employers are most concerned with their early identification of candidates and their branding efforts. “Identifying talent early through internships and co-ops was rated the highest, with 94.9 percent of respondents indicating it is “very” or “extremely” important. Trailing slightly was branding their organization to campuses, as 90.2 percent indicated it is “very” or “extremely” important. Other factors of high importance were diversity (87.4 percent) and measuring the results of their university relations and recruiting program (83.5 percent).”

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Posted November 19, 2018 by

Superb hiring news for class of 2019: best hiring outlook since 2007

 

Economic news released today by the National Association of Colleges and Employers contained a lot of great news for students and recent graduates of one-, two-, and four-year colleges and universities.

According to a survey of NACE employer members, only four percent of employers plan to decrease their hiring of recent college grads while a whopping 57.4 percent plan to increase such hiring. For those who aren’t human calculators, that means that 38.6 percent plan to maintain their number of hires. Even better news is that the percent increase in projected hires came in at 16.6 percent, which would be the largest increase in 12 years. It is noteworthy that the hiring rate has not been increasing year-after-year since the Great Recession of 2008-09. Indeed, the class of 2018 saw hiring decrease by 1.3 percent.

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Posted October 12, 2018 by

Fraudulent job postings targeting students: “Craziest fu**ing job I’ve ever had”

A handshake. It seems so simple. So cordial. So harmless. Unless it is a job posted to Handshake. Maybe. Sometimes. Allow me to explain.

Today’s Community Digest e-newsletter from the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) included a question from Shannon Schwaebler, Director of Career Services at Northeastern State University. She asked if her fellow subscribers, “would be open to sharing their policies for approving employer accounts through Handshake. We were forwarded this Inside Higher Ed article and want to make sure we have adequate policies in place to avoid this happening. We currently have processes we go through for 3rd party recruiters, utilize the trust score, etc. but are curious if anyone has written out processes they are proud of that we could take a look at. Our office wants to make sure there aren’t things we aren’t considering through the process that could be dangerous to our students.”

Hmmmm. What’s this article that Shannon references? Well, I bet that most of the subscribers didn’t open the e-newsletter at all and most of those who did only skimmed it and so missed a nugget that could potentially upend a key way that students and recent graduates of one-, two-, and four-year colleges find part-time, seasonal, internship, and entry-level jobs. Perhaps a little context would be of benefit here. (more…)

Posted April 20, 2018 by

Most interns are hired through job boards and other off-campus, virtual programs

 

When most people — including employers — think of hiring interns, they think of hiring them on-campus with the assistance of the college career service office as well as professors and other faculty. And those people would be wrong. Some interesting information came out today from the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) regarding the sources of hire for interns.

NACE’s membership is heavily skewed to large employers so those are the employers are receive and respond to its surveys. You must consider that when looking at their survey results, understanding that it isn’t a random sample. In other words, their data don’t accurately reflect the hiring practices of all employers. At best, it reflects the hiring practices of the large employers that make up the bulk of its membership. (more…)

Posted June 21, 2017 by

Leveraging diversity: CEO Faith Rothberg presents 8 organizations who are succeeding [video and slides]

 

There are more men named John and David who run big companies than all the women who run big companies.

College Recruiter CEO Faith Rothberg has a problem with this, and made a point of offering solutions at this year’s National Association of Colleges and Employers conference. In the video below, Rothberg highlights eight organizations who are leveraging diversity to impact their customer numbers, workplace culture and profitability.

Watch Rothberg’s presentation, and find links to her examples below, along with major takeaways.

Study after study prove the business case for gender diversity. Increased gender diversity positively impacts productivity, innovation, decision-making, and employee retention and satisfaction. In fact, companies with the highest rates of gender diversity make more than 13 times average sales revenue than companies with the lowest gender diversity. Similarly, those gender diverse companies pull in an average of 15,000 more customers.

The amount of gender diversity varies by industry and role. Medical and health services managers, for example, are actually more likely to be women than men, as are human resources or social service managers. But only 36% of management occupations are filled with 50% women. That includes marketing and sales, operations, transportation, information systems and much more.

Here are eight companies leading the way to increase gender diversity

  1. Aramark became a Catalyst partner of Women’s Foodservice Forum.
  2. Bank of America has invested in LEAD for Women, an employee resource group dedicated to women’s professional development. About half of managers and executive management team are women.
  3. Enterprise Rent-A-Car named Pamela Nicholson as CEO in 2013. She joined the company 32 years ago as a recent grad.
  4. Ernst & Young opens up dialogue between men and women via Inclusiveness Steering Committees, encouraging candid discussions about critical issues and experiences, and establishing mentoring and sponsorship initiatives. They’ve increased the number of women in top management by 20%.
  5. (Two orgs here): Goldman Sachs and U.S. Department of State partner to leverage the expertise of the public and private sectors to encourage inclusive economic growth in the Middle East and Northern Africa.
  6. IBM developed task forces that focus on understanding differences and finding ways to appeal to more employees and customers. Revenues from small and midsize businesses dominated by minority and female buyers increased from $10 million to $300 million.
  7. Quicken Loans routinely ranks among the best U.S. companies for both diversity and overall company culture. Women fill 45% of all jobs and 43% of management jobs.

Takeaways from Rothberg:

  1. Diversity and inclusion goes beyond race. It includes ethnicity, sexual orientation, religious affiliation, generation, disability, personality type, thinking style, and gender.
  2. Leverage that diversity to produce better products and services.
  3. Use variety of practices including mentoring, employee resource groups, multicultural talent management, strategic partnership development, and e-learning.
  4. Senior leaders must seek diversity, create inclusion, and drive accountability.
  5. Promote cognitive diversity. Embrace differing perspectives, interpretations. Overcome unconscious bias and culture that inhibits the sharing of different opinions.

Download Rothberg’s PowerPoint slides here.

 

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Posted May 25, 2017 by

5 ways STEM/technical grads can develop soft skills employers covet

 

Good news for STEM grads: Those with degrees in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math can expect to earn the highest starting salaries among 2017 grads. That’s according to the Winter 2017 Salary Survey report from the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE). According to the NACE report, the top three starting salaries for recent college grads with bachelor’s degrees are in these STEM fields:

  • Engineering – $66,097
  • Computer science – $65,540
  • Math and Science – $55,087

While STEM grads are currently hitting the job market at full force, another group of job seekers are also starting their career: The graduate from the two-year technical college. Like STEM jobs, hot jobs for those with two-year technical backgrounds include air traffic controller, nuclear technician, computer programmer, and electronic engineering technician.

Translation: Skilled workers with both two and four year degrees are in demand.

But skilled workers with the education, and the right soft skills, are the one’s getting hired. With thousands of STEM or technical school grads now in the workforce, employers hiring recent college grads or entry-level employees are looking for more than just the right educational background.

“A degree isn’t what’s going to set you apart from other candidates,” says Jena Brown, Talent Acquisition Marketing and Brand Leader at Kerry, a leader in the food, beverage, and pharma industries, with 23,000 staff and 100+ innovation and manufacturing centers across six continents. “It’s usually required for technical positions, so you can’t stand on that alone.”

In fact, those who get hired often stand out because of the soft skills they are able to articulate in an interview. This may be why chief information officers (CIOs) surveyed by staffing firm Robert Half Technology named communication skills (28 percent) and problem-solving abilities (21 percent) as the top areas where skilled and technical professionals could improve.

To stand out, according to Robert Half, skilled workers need to show employers:

  • You are an effective communicator
  • You have a strong understanding of business (even better if you have specific knowledge of the potential employer’s company or industry)
  • You have a history of coming up with creative solutions to problems

Brown agrees. Recruiters are looking for the job seeker who has something extra to bring to the team, whether it’s a personality that fits corporate culture, or the ability to make an impact beyond a basic job description: Someone who is a team player, willing to help out even if it isn’t part of the daily routine, or someone who shines bright and empowers those around them.

“We want to hear what you did to hone your business skills during the time you were earning your degree,” says Brown. “We want to see that you are looking ahead, seeing the larger picture and preparing yourself to maximize the career opportunities that await you.”

What are the top soft skills Brown and her team look for when recruiting recent college grads with technical backgrounds? Brown referred to these key skills:

1. Communication Skills: Regardless of the type of organization one works for, effective communication across all levels is a critical soft skill for technical new grads. This is especially important in larger organizations, like Kerry for example, which have a complex matrix organizational structure. What is a matrix organization? According to study.com: A matrix organizational structure is a company structure in which the reporting relationships are set up as a grid, or matrix, rather than in the traditional hierarchy. In other words, employees have dual reporting relationships – generally to both a functional manager and a product manager.

Can you do your work – and communicate technical information in a non-technical manner to others on the team, or across the organization? That’s important.

2. Teamwork: The ability to work in diverse, cross functional teams is important. “This goes hand in hand with flexibility,” says Brown. “Be malleable and teachable while contributing your valuable knowledge within teams.”

Large organizations have teams, reporting structures, and chains of command to follow. Being a part of that team, and working with others outside your team, and understanding how to fit in goes a long way towards success.

3. Professionalism: The ability to navigate a corporate environment, meet deadlines, conduct meetings, and contribute helps give recent college grads credibility in any role. Show up on time, do your job, ask appropriate questions, don’t make excuses. That’s a good start.

4. Leadership: Those who are able to lead and influence without the authority that comes with a title go the furthest, says Brown. Many entry-level employees don’t focus on developing leadership skills early in their career. But finding a mentor can assist with the leadership development process.

5. Consultative and presentation skills: These skills “can take you far regardless of level (or career path),” says Brown. Consultative skills focus on behaviors that deliver consultative value to internal customers and external clients.

Brown looks for recent college grad with those types of unique skills when recruiting and hiring those with technical backgrounds. She was once one of those consultative employees with a technical background, needing to succeed with non-technical co-workers and teams. She recruited employees for a company that provided customized technical services and platforms to huge companies around the globe.

“This was challenging because we were subject matter experts in designing and building customized MS solutions, which took very specific technical skills, but much of what we did was onsite at the customer site which required soft skills like a sales person might have,” says Brown.

How can recent college grads develop consultative or presentation skills? Joining industry associations or networking groups, and becoming an active member is one way. Volunteering at industry events is another way.

“If you can communicate in a consultative manner and present effectively it will get you more opportunities as you advance in your career,” says Brown. “While daunting at first, if given the opportunity to present and get visibility, do it.”

For many college students, there is nothing more daunting than earning a STEM degree, or completing a technical degree. Now that you are graduated, you need to take it to the next level. Start by mastering these soft skills to stand out, get noticed, and get hired.

When you do, a great salary, and great career opportunity awaits.

Want more tips and advice on the important skills recruiters covet? Stay connected to College Recruiter by visiting our blog, and connect with us on LinkedInTwitterFacebook, and YouTube.

Posted February 27, 2017 by

College Recruiter CEO to speak about gender diversity at NACE conference

 

Minneapolis, MN (February 25, 2017)—Interactive recruitment media company College Recruiter announced today that CEO Faith Rothberg will speak at this year’s conference for the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE), held June 6-9 in Las Vegas. The NACE conference is for college career services and college recruiters to make new connections, develop new insight and skills and discover new business solutions. Rothberg will speak about diversifying the workforce.

According to Rothberg, “When you pretend gender diversity doesn’t matter, your bottom line suffers. So recruiting and retaining women isn’t just the right thing to do – it is essential to increasing your profitability.  Including women in all areas of your organization adds valuable differing insights to solve our tough business problems.”

As CEO of a technology driven business, Rothberg has an inspirational personal story to share. Her career has remained at the intersection between business and technology, both of which were male-dominated fields when she entered them and, unfortunately, remain so in 2017. After earning her MBA, Rothberg became a manufacturing information technology consultant in a job that required working out of construction trailers at manufacturing facilities. Rothberg now leads College Recruiter and takes pride in helping launch the early careers of college students, including thousands of young women. STEM fields (science, technology, engineering and math) are heavily dominated by men, and Rothberg will share about the challenges she has faced while climbing to the top.

Although less attention is paid on this topic outside of STEM, many non-STEM industries are just as lacking in gender diversity. Rothberg will identify the industries and fields that are lagging, and discuss some of the research around why organizations need to diversify their talent pipeline. She will speak directly to recruiters who influence that entry point into the pipeline, as well as retention strategies.

Rothberg’s focus for the discussion will go beyond merely discussing the problem. She will bring specific examples of how small, medium, and large organizations have successfully improved their recruitment and retention of women. She will discuss the implementation of innovative programs that will improve their recruitment and retention of female students and recent graduates.

About College Recruiter

College Recruiter believes that every student and recent grad deserves a great career. They believe in creating a great candidate and recruiter experience. Their interactive media solutions connect students and grads to great careers. College Recruiter is the leading, interactive, recruitment media company used by college students and recent graduates to find great careers. Their clients are primarily colleges, universities, and employers who want to recruit dozens, hundreds, or thousands of students and recent graduates per year.

About NACE

Established in 1956, NACE connects more than 7,600 college career services professionals at nearly 2,000 colleges and universities nationwide, more than 3,000 university relations and recruiting professionals, and the business affiliates that serve this community. NACE forecasts hiring and trends in the job market; tracks starting salaries, recruiting and hiring practices, and student attitudes and outcomes; and identifies best practices and benchmarks.