On Tuesday 22nd October, we were delighted to host the Institute of Student Employers Attraction and Marketing Forum.
ISE Student Recruitment Survey 2019
To start off the morning, we heard an insightful presentation from Tristram Hooley (Chief Research Officer, Institute of Student Employers), looking into some of the ISE’s latest findings on trends in the graduate recruitment market.
The Inside Student Recruitment 2019 study saw responses from 153 ISE members and covered 37,389 student hires.
Their findings show that most (57%) of firms’ recruitment budgets are being spent on marketing; including online marketing and attraction (30%), selection (27%), face-to-face marketing and attraction (18%), diversity (9%) and other activity (7%).
The most effective approaches to attracting graduates
Tristram also shared that visits to universities, the use of external jobs boards and advertising on their own websites are the three most effective ways to attract candidates.
At Milkround, we know the importance of face-to-face engagement from the start of a student’s university journey. We visit over 70 freshers and careers fairs every year as well as touring universities to support and develop their skills. We encourage employers to do the same, to ensure you’re first to mind when they take their first steps into the working world.
If you’d like to partner with us at universities, tour with us on campus or work with us to deliver skills sessions, then please do get in touch and we’d love to help create a bespoke campaign for you!
The study also reports that some firms are making changes to improve diversity, with 38% of respondents noting that they have changed the universities that they have visited to better enhance diversity. We also know from the report, that members believe the biggest driver for engagement with diversity is the desire to secure the best talent (cited by 76% of employers) – therefore showing that it’s not only a moral argument but it will actually help create a stronger and more talented workforce too.
Hype Collective: What students want in a Graduate Job
We then heard from Hype Collective, who shared their recent research, conducted with the ISE, on what students want in a graduate job.
The Work Issue Part 1 – July 2019 consisted of 9 industry interviews, 7 focus groups and a survey of over 1,000 students.
Hype Collective looked into whether Gen-Z prioritise a company’s values highly (after salary). They found that most students didn’t rank morals in the top 5 reasons why they would choose to work there (with some not even ranking this in the top 10) – which is quite surprising!
It’s time to talk
Whilst young people feel more comfortable than ever talking about their mental health to their friends (90%), when we look at whether Gen-Z feel comfortable talking to their employer about their mental health, only 25% said they do.
The findings on mental health were really interesting and matched up with our own research on Mental Health Sick Days. We found that only 24% of Gen Z respondents have been honest with their employer about taking a mental health sick day. Hype Collective’s research echoed this, showing that two thirds of Gen-Z would be more to work for a company, if they had a public and transparent approach to mental health.
Assessment processes have also come under the spotlight in their research, with respondents noting that they are bad for mental well-being, since they feel their value as a human is being judged.
Hype Collective: Panel Discussion
Hype Collective also ran a panel as part of the ISE forum, with the following panellists:
- Natasha Dallyn, Recruitment Marketing Advisor at Shell
- Shanice Mears, Head of Talent at The Elephant Room
- Maria Donovan, Recruitment Director at Unlocked Graduates
Here are a couple of highlights…
Asking applicants about their mental health
We know that students and graduates have support networks and counselling available at university, but what happens when they leave and enter the workplace. A lot of employers are making huge advancements to support newbies, but can you ask applicants too much, too early in the recruitment process?
Maria from Unlocked Graduates noted that it is easier for them to ask, as a large proportion of the prison population have a mental health condition. They recommend that employers ask mental health questions after the offer is made, so that young people feel confident that this will not affect their chances of getting the job.
The longevity of a graduate’s first role
Natasha Dallyn from Shell spoke about the concept of the ‘flaky graduate’, and how leaving a job can be polarised by many people, who make assumptions and consider this a negative. She added be asking whether it is bad to see that someone has moved around in their career.
Shanice from The Elephant Room discussed portfolio careers, and how getting the most of graduates can mean supporting passion projects and sabbaticals, which can help retain employees.
How side hustles benefit The Elephant Room
With a small team of 8, Shanice spoke about the different projects that each of her team members are part of, outside of their main role.
From writing books to organising events in the grime music scene, everything comes back to The Elephant Room. Employees get what they want from their role, understand what is trending in the student population so that they can feed this back into their day job.
Next everyone in the room got involved through group roundtables and a panel discussion covering diversity in the workplace and hiring challenges, this threw up some really interesting thoughts and ideas.
One of the discussions was around how marketing and attraction approaches have changed to improve the diversity of candidates. Groups fed back that the university a candidate attended was no longer an important metric in deciding whether a graduate was right for the job. Minimum requirements were being removed from job descriptions to create a fairer process – especially since the value of a degree classification can vary from one institution to another.
Siemens and AIA Worldwide: Using tech to identify and hire top STEM talent
Working with AIA helped to reinvent and advance their traditional Sir Williams Siemens Challenge (which used to consist of submitting an essay-based task).
- Increase the diversity of candidates applying (gender and degree)
- Convey the exciting aspect of Siemens
- Raise awareness of the brand and sells of the business
Advice on how to make a hackathon successful
- Get people to sign-up
Using a mix of print work, web pages, a teaser video (showing someone in the field creating a model, so that people knew what to expect), run focus groups
- Make it exciting
Show those apply everything that is included (such as the equipment they will get to use) – highlighting why this is a great opportunity
- Keep them engaged
Through closed groups on Facebook, an educational hub (perhaps through a university) and event information (so that they can follow updates and competition rules)
- Properly plan
Create an event agenda and map out every hour of each day – detailed planning is key!
If you want to speak to us about how Milkround can better your student and graduate recruitment processes then please don’t hesitate to get in touch: https://recruiting.milkround.com/