Top 3 Tips to Get Student Recruitment Right
Recruitment of temporary and part-time staff is a difficult matter for many small businesses. With thinner profit margins than their larger counterparts, small enterprises have been exploring the recruitment of University and college students. Having often been faced with lacklustre performance and lack of motivation from their new hires, these initial roadblocks have deterred many businesses from tapping into this relatively new form of labour.
As the CEO of thestudentjob.com, the UK’s fastest-growing student recruitment website, I’m often approached by small businesses, many employing 5 to 20 staff, looking to for extra part-time staff in order to cope with additional demand, often seasonally. Students are perfect for companies like these: they’re creative, easily adaptable and do not demand high expectations. Dealing with many requests regularly, I’ve become familiar with some of the best practices that ensure the successful recruitment of students:
1. Effective Marketing is Key
Many businesses do not place so much emphasis into marketing their available vacancies: they often don’t provide concrete details on the job description, requirements and what rewards students should expect. Some businesses advertise their vacancies on free job boards, which students rarely visit and often do not trust: this is critical, since a mention of a company on the wrong website can greatly damage its brand and image.
Ineffective advertising immediately reduces the likelihood for your company to receive quality applicants. A proper job ad should be a two-sided proposition, detailing what the employer expects of the candidate and providing a job description, but also clearly detailing what the employee will get in return. Perhaps more importantly, consider using recruitment websites designed specifically for students: since they provide tools for this specific demographic, it will make much easier to recruit the right staff. The benefit of a student job board will greatly outweigh any initial cost.
2. Provide Suitable Training
With a small crew, some managers might often feel reluctant to provide training to temporary staff, instead applying a more hands-off approach, which can save some time initially, but also be detrimental to long-term staff motivation. While often initially motivated, enthusiasm can wear out quickly if students feel that they’re not learning on the job. As other priorities pile up in their fast-paced lives, their productivity will quickly slow to a halt unless action is taken from the beginning to provide them with effective instructions for the job that the have actually been hired to perform.
Unlike most older workers, students can adapt much more quickly to changing circumstances: this will make training much easier and quicker than most companies may be used to with an older workforce. When instructed to perform concrete tasks, with tangible objectives, these young workers will be committed and productive. What’s more, properly trained students will quickly develop loyalty to their company and become future potential full-time employees, providing further return in the initial investment.
3. Retention Matters
In order to ensure that the time and resources invested into the new hire will be effective and lasting for the organisation, effort must be put into retaining the new workers. If initial training has been successful, chances are that the student workers will be willing to stick around at the company for as long as they can. Their pursuit of long-term job security, even after education, will lead them to consider staying at the business for much longer than their initial arrangements.
From my experience with companies that we liaise with regularly, those that provide a clear career path to all of their employees will increase their motivation from day one. What’s a better recruitment pool than the employees already at the organisation?
Of course, none of these strategies work unless recruitment is performed correctly. Thestudentjob.com provides the tools for any business to begin tapping into the student workforce. Unlike other solutions currently existent on the market, we market every single job ad to the correct audience, always delivering quality candidates quickly. With novel and easy-to-use candidate selection tools, it has never been easier for recruiters to pick the right applicants and get them into the organisation quickly.
I strongly urge small businesses to take a second look at student recruitment for temporary and casual work. It won’t only provide financial relief; the young workers also have the potential to bring extra enthusiasm and dynamism to the workplace.
Jack Tang is the Founder & CEO of Thestudentjob.com, a serial tech entrepreneur and a pioneer in innovation for digital recruitment.