As employers finalise graduate recruitment campaigns the race is on to hire the top talent. If your campaign is failing to live up to your expectations, here are three reasons why:-
You ignore sector trends
A poor candidate response, or a drop in applications compared to last year, may mean you aren’t paying attention to the trends affecting your sector. At the beginning of this year High Fliers predicted an increase of 4.3% in graduate vacancies, with public sector, retail and engineering employers all planning to increase their intake. More recently, concern has been expressed over a 20% fall in graduates applying for banking, finance and accountancy jobs in the last 12 months.
Sector trends also extend to salary. Analysis by Korn Ferry found that the national average base salary for graduate recruits has increased by under 1% in the past year to just over £26,000 but pay varies by sector and region. For example, the North West and the West Midlands reported graduate salary increases of 10% and 6.1% respectively.
The High Fliers report supports this overall trend, quoting median starting salaries of £30,000. However, it also notes that at least one sixth of positions available on the top graduate programmes offer starting salaries of over £40,000. Investment banking, law and oil and energy companies are among those offering the highest salaries. Graduates in STEM careers are also expected to be paid above the industry average.
Last year we noted that employers were paying 30% above market rates for graduates in tech and finance, mainly from non-British universities. A poor response to your job adverts or high levels of job rejections may suggest the need for a salary review for hard to fill graduate positions. The data in your recruitment software will provide early indications of problems.
You don’t provide feedback
Student and graduate careers app Debut launched a ‘Fight for Feedback’ campaign this summer in response to a survey which found that four out of five candidates attending interviews received no feedback. Not only will feedback help candidates in improving their next job application but it will promote a better employer brand. As the number of reneged job offers remains a problem for graduate employers, requesting feedback may also provide the vital insight your business needs into your graduate recruitment process.
Automating basic elements of the hiring process, including regular updates on the progress of job applications, improves the candidate experience and enables HR to focus on providing – and asking for – feedback. Debut’s proposals suggest committing at least 15 minutes to feedback which should be delivered to your candidates within three working days.
Vague job posts, poorly structured interviews or a lack of engagement during the hiring process also affect a candidate’s final decision on whether to accept your job offer.
Your hiring process is biased
As a shortage of graduate talent is anticipated again this year, reducing unconscious bias will expand your overall candidate reach and improve diversity. Incorporate the following to attract a broader talent pool:-
- Review the screening parameters in your applicant tracking software to remove narrow criteria - for example, attendance at specific universities - and introduce anonymised CVs as standard in your hiring process.
- Analyse your recruitment data to identify areas for potential bias, such as, hiring talent from the same socio-economic background or limiting your talent pool to the same job boards or social media sites.
- Support your final decisions on candidate selection with the data available in your recruitment software to minimise bias and retention problems among your graduate recruits.
Turn your struggling graduate recruitment process around with recruitment software used by some of the world’s leading organisations.
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