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How To: Recruit Graduates (an article by CV-Library)

Posted by Georgie Betts on 25/05/2018
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As the academic year ends, many graduates will be on the lookout for exciting opportunities to kick-start their careers. For businesses, this means there’s an active talent pool to tap into and fill their roles.

However, with any form of hiring, it’s important to think strategically and consider the approach you need to take to attract, recruit and retain talented graduates for your business.

Below, we’ll explain the key areas you need to consider when hiring graduates, providing practical advice to help you understand how to recruit them.


Understand their career priorities

Firstly, it’s important to consider what they want from the world of work. In many cases, their needs will vary to those of their predecessors. In fact, according to CV-Library research, 76.6% of 18-24 year olds say that workplace perks are important to them, against 42.1% of 45-54 year olds.

Alongside this, we found that 92.5% of 18-24 year olds feel that career progression is important to them, in comparison to 64.5% of 45-54 year olds.

Clearly, this generation has high expectations from the workplace. Many will want set career paths, with exciting rewards to match. Before you get started, think about what you can offer to meet these needs and be realistic with what you can provide.

Use the right platforms

Once you’re ready to start targeting graduates, it’s important that you invest in the right areas to aid your recruitment process. Think about where you’re advertising your jobs. More or less everyone will start their job search online nowadays, so you should begin here too.

Job boards can be highly effective as they provide maximum exposure to your vacancies. Essentially, candidates sign up to these sites and search for relevant opportunities, based on a set criteria. You may choose to use a graduate specific site to advertise your roles, or a more generalist job board.

Alongside this, social media is also great for shouting about your vacancies. You could use these tools to share jobs posted on your site, or even to advertise your roles through their premium services. Here, you can even target candidates of certain backgrounds, for example, those with a specific degree, in a particular location.

Think about your recruitment process

Once you have a candidate interested in your position, you must ensure that you keep them engaged throughout the recruitment process. Graduates, in particular, have a great sense of immediacy and therefore won’t take too kindly to having to wait weeks and weeks for feedback after an interview.

Consider how many stages of an interview you’re going to have. It might be that you could hold an assessment day, or use telephone or video interviews to speed up the process. Then, think about how long you’re taking to get back to the candidate, whether they were successful or not.

Remember, employee review sites provide a platform for people to talk about their experience with your company – the good and the bad. You want to protect your employer brand, so ensure that your recruitment process is easy to navigate and fair to candidates.

Make an offer they can’t refuse

As mentioned earlier, graduates will be passionate about starting a job and earning themselves some money. Therefore, it’s essential that you’re competitive with your offers. Keep a tab on what your competitors are paying and the types of perks that they give to their staff.

A quick search on Google will reveal the average salaries for graduate jobs in your sector and you can use your existing employees as a benchmark. Candidates will probably do a similar search, so bear this in mind when setting your pay scales.

Remember, added benefits such as leaving early on a Friday or being able to work from home every now and again make all the difference. Think about what makes your company unique and why someone would want to work there.

In summary

Overall, graduates can bring a lot of great skills and experience to your workplace. Therefore, it’s important that you take the necessary steps to boost your hiring process and recruit the very best university-leavers. With our advice, you’ll be able to find, recruit and retain the very best workers.


Author: CV-Library

CV-Library is the UK’s leading independent job board and attracts graduates from all corners of the UK, from Glasgow to Liverpool. It also owns a range of sector specific job sites, including Jobs Retail.