Recruiting College Graduates: Why You Should Hire for Attitude
The need to routinely bring new talent into your company cannot be overlooked. On top of ensuring the stability and succession of your workforce, hiring candidates fresh out of college full of new ideas and philosophies can help reinvigorate your organization. However, many in your same position often falter in recruiting college graduates because they continue to adhere to antiquated hiring policies rather than focusing on the unique tools that each individual candidate brings to the table. As you know full well just how costly making the wrong hire can be, it’s vital that you not miss when attempting to attract new young talent.
Dealing with More Candidates Across Multiple Disciplines
Unfortunately, the chances of you striking out on a recently-graduated hire are greater than ever. The National Center for Education Statistics reports that as of 2014, 34 percent of the population had attained at least a bachelor’s degree. That represents an 11 percent increase from the previous 15 years. While this influx of degree holders certainly reflects well on the importance that Americans place on higher education, it also serves to effectively water down the candidate pool. With a greater number of prospective applicants to choose from also comes a greater risk of hiring the wrong one.
When companies do miss on recruiting college graduates, it often can be tied to their insistence to value the type a graduate’s degree above all else. To insist on applicants having a degree in a certain discipline may not seem all that unreasonable. However, studies have shown that more and more of today’s graduates are getting their degrees in general areas of study rather than a particular discipline. According to information compiled by USA Today, six of the 10 most popular college majors today fall into this category, including:
-Business administration and management
-Education and professional development
-Liberal arts and humanities
Yet simply because fewer job candidates carry specialty degrees doesn’t necessarily mean that those that don’t should be excluded from your job search. In fact, it’s often quite the contrary. Specialty degree holders often offer few skills outside of those attained through their programs. On the other hand, those who have degrees in more general studies may actually be more apt to flourish in your organization because of their personalities.
Finding the Right Fit for Your Organization
To optimize the process of recruiting college graduates, many recommend that you adopt the philosophy of hiring for attitude and then providing the skills. While at first such a hiring practice may seem to present too much risk, your chances of getting it wrong are greatly reduced if you heed the following advice:
-Don’t get hung up on degree programs: In many cases, career counselors convince students early on in their collegiate careers to abandon programs geared towards their passions in favor of ones that may seem to have more practical applications. While this may make them more hirable on paper, it also means that they’ll be less engaged in their careers. However, those who choose to major in academic disciplines that are more in line with their interests and aptitudes often get more out of their studies and achieve a ïcan-doï attitude that transitions well into the professional world.
-Never de-value soft skills: The knowledge acquired through a skill-centric curriculum will help a prospective candidate fulfill the requirements related to his or her day-to-day job performance. Yet it may not serve him or her as well in dealing with the other unpredictable challenges that a job may present. Talents such as being a good communicator, being able to work well in a team setting, being self-motivated, or demonstrating an ability to manage time and resources wisely are just as important to career success as job-related skills. These ïsoft skillsï can be developed and cultivated through any course of study.
-Focus on a candidate’s personal discipline: Far too many employers involved in recruiting college graduates get distracted by accomplishments such as one completing his or her degree at an accelerated pace or making the dean’s list. Such candidates may work well in a structured academic setting, yet perform poorly in a more autonomous work environment. On the other hand, an applicant who maintained a decent GPA while also being involved in sports, campus activities, or other personal endeavors has already demonstrated a level of personal discipline that will allow him or her to easily handle multiple tasks in various roles.
The importance of recruiting college graduates into the job market has always been high. However, in far too many cases, many companies overlook the aspects that go into doing it effectively. Not to worry; Mighty Recruiter has developed the necessary tools and resources to help you. In utilizing all them, you’ll discover that finding the most qualified college graduate candidates can be much easier than most would think.