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Graduate recruitment

Saving Top Graduates from Corporate Cults

Kirstie Kelly

graduates-2.jpgCampus recruitment draws thousands of highly qualified undergraduates into lucrative corporate positions each year – what can recruiters do to lure young graduates away from these “corporate cults”?

Upon graduating from university, a lion’s share of the “best and brightest” are drawn to careers in the financial or consulting sectors. In addition to the naturally generous compensation packages, these companies utilise some of the most broad-reaching and effective campus recruitment tactics to attract potential hires. What makes these jobs so appealing to promising candidates, and how can your company claim its own piece of the graduate recruitment pie?

Corporate Cults

As detailed in the Guardian, researchers George Monbiot and John Sheil found that the proportion of graduates taking jobs in finance and management consultancy ranges from 5% at Edinburgh to 13% at Oxford, 16% at Cambridge, 28% at the London School of Economics and an enormous 60% at the London Business School.

Although corporate positions provide lucrative opportunities for undergraduates, most don’t offer much in the way of inspiration; newly recruited corporate employees can expect to dedicate long hours to unengaging work at their “corporate cult.” So how are young, innovative graduates being funneled into these lucrative yet monotonous careers?

The answer is simple: financial and consulting firms employ a broad range of effective campus recruiting tactics to influence students’ career choices long before graduation.

Competitive universities have a long, shared history with powerhouse corporations, to the detriment of smaller employers. According to Michael Gibson of Forbes, “Universities love to shepherd talent to large corporations. There is a Goldman Sachs Room in Columbia University’s career services office. To access job fairs at Ivy League schools, firms must pay thousands to get exhibit spaces. That leaves many small startups hungry for talent locked out.”

Throughout their years at university, students are exposed to corporate career paths through student ambassadors, sponsored events, and paid internships. Many students view these lucrative positions in banking or consulting as temporary stepping stones to fields they’re more passionate about. However, many of these lukewarm recruits become lifelong employees in the financial and consulting industries, without ever exploring other opportunities.

Fight Back with Innovative Recruiting

Financial and consulting firms allocate tremendous resources to the pursuit of potential hires. Luckily, smaller businesses can successfully recruit top graduates by employing a range of innovative and cost-effective strategies.

If your company doesn’t possess the resources to sustain a physical presence on university campuses, make your presence known in the digital realm. “Social hiring” through platforms like Twitter has proven particularly effective; according to Entrepreneur, more than 60,000 jobs are tweeted every day on the network.

With its large and highly engaged audience, Twitter is being utilised by about 40% of companies to source potential hires. Specifically, social channels can be leveraged to disseminate multimedia promotional material that familiarises young graduates with a company’s mission and culture.

Once you’ve generated interest in your business among graduate recruits, reel them in with a highly personalised, branded candidate experience. Competing with lucrative financial and consulting firms isn’t easy, but by effectively communicating your organisation’s unique culture and employer brand through a highly personalised recruitment process, you can break through to the best recent grads and wrench them from the jaws of another corporate cult.

(Image credit: stevensokulski/Pixabay)

Kirstie Kelly

Kirstie is our resident expert in the field of recruitment and technology, having 23 years total experience in commercial business across a range of business sectors. As a result, she has been instrumental in ensuring the innovative technology provided at LaunchPad is relevant for our customers. Kirstie's passion is all about finding creative solutions to recruitment challenges. And no better way than with technology!