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How to Take the Student’s Point of View in Graduate Hiring

6 ways to create an incredible experience as you engage with today’s dynamic and diverse early career talent.

Today’s graduates want to love where they work. They want to feel connected to your values and culture, and they embrace diversity. They also want to know they will be supported in today’s pandemic-impacted work environment to perform well and achieve their potential over time.

The desire for instant information means today’s graduates are just as interested in learning about your organization as they are about themselves. For the generation that is used to having information at their fingertips, your organization can be as immediately present and relevant to them as the latest app.

They learn by seeing and doing – they want more video, more immersive engagement, more interaction. When attracting today’s grads, be as authentic and relevant as possible since they are used to being bombarded by a myriad of messages. You want grads to bring their whole self to work when they show up, and simultaneously you want to present an authentic impression of what it is like to work at your company.

The desire for instant information means today’s graduates are just as interested in learning about your organization as they are about themselves.

In order to attract and engage with a dynamic pool of diverse, early-career talent with the potential to succeed, learn, and grow within your organization, keep in mind these simple points from the graduate’s point of view:

  1. Respect graduates by providing real work experiences during the hiring process in a meaningful, honest and engaging way. Not only will this reinforce that applying for a job or promotion is a serious business, but it will also allow candidates to show their true potential. 
  2. Feature real employees and their stories in video or other formats to share authentic, diverse voices as part of your employment brand narrative.
  3. Provide a realistic sense of the role, function, and/or the work environment they will be in – and simultaneously provide insight into the opportunities for career growth early on.
  4. Share feedback, whenever possible, so candidates learn as they go.
  5. Be honest. While grads may think they know all about your organization because of social media, their sources may not be accurate.
  6. Set new graduate hires up for early success with a personalized onboarding plan – using insights and data from your assessment process to address any skills gaps and support needs will be of huge value to both the successful candidate and your organization. They will be able to hit the ground running and make a tangible contribution much sooner.

You can help your graduate applicants turn a perceived “chore” (the process of applying for jobs) into a more meaningful experience by putting yourself in their shoes.

Contact us to learn more about how you can create an incredible graduate hiring experience that attracts the best talent.

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Donna Weiss

Donna Weiss heads our Global Graduate and Managerial Solutions from our U.S. based Arlington, Virginia office. She has steered talent acquisition product initiatives since 2015, guiding the product development and growth of innovative hiring solutions that help companies hire the best talent. Prior to SHL, Donna spent over a decade at CEB, now Gartner creating HR product offerings and overseeing lines of business that serve Recruiting, Learning, and Talent Management executives and their teams. Prior to joining CEB, Donna held brand management and consumer and market insight roles at Unilever, and Marketing and Planning Systems (MaPS), now part of Kantar. She has been quoted and published in various publications including Talent Management Magazine, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, Journal of Corporate Recruiting, and Chief Learning Officer magazine. Both her bachelor’s degree in Industrial and Labor Relations and MBA are from Cornell University.

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