5 Ways to Appeal to Graduates in a Changing Climate

Back in September of last year the situation for recent graduates looking for work wasn’t looking good. Graduation, which is normally a proud moment, became a time of fear as the economy dwindled and work placements were cancelled. A survey by Prospects in the summer of 2020 found that many final-year students had seen job offers deferred or even withdrawn due to the economic disruption caused by Covid. 

Fortunately, 2021 has seen a rebound in the jobs market. At CharityJob we’ve seen the number of jobs posted rise by almost 40% from January to June. With a more candidate-driven market, there are far more jobs available, meaning that recruiters need to work harder to appeal to top graduates. What’s the best way to do this? We hope that the below tips will help.  

1. Have a regular presence at online university events 

Having an ongoing relationship with top universities is key to appealing to Generation Z graduates. One of the best ways of doing this is via events, most of which have gone online due to the pandemic and are likely to continue in this form for quite some time. Research some of the major recruitment fairs at the universities near you. You might also consider getting in touch directly with societies at these universities which are particularly relevant to your cause and offer to run your own, smaller scale online event. Some universities have careers’ pages directly advertising jobs, so it’s worth finding out the cost of placing your job ads there.  

invest in young talent

2. Build your employer brand on social media 

Recent graduates are known for being particularly digitally-savvy, which is why appealing to them on social media is important. There are a few key elements to building your employer brand here. Select the platforms that you wish to use with LinkedIn being the obvious frontrunner. Then take the time to plan a content strategy with a consistent style, brand and tone of voice, and make sure that you post regularly.  

Take the time to research any graduate groups on these channels and interact regularly with their members to keep your charity front of mind. Using the right hashtag can be a powerful way of increasing the scope of your message on certain platforms, such as Twitter, so be sure to research the most relevant ones.  

3. Make development a priority 

According to a Randstad Study, 84% of Gen Z employees said they wanted to do meaningful work at a company they believe in, that gives them financial security and allows them to build their careers. It’s therefore important to highlight development opportunities and training in both your job ads and your general charity marketing. One idea might be to feature the profiles of individual team members on your website, showing their journeys since they first joined your organisation. If a graduate can see a clear road to success through the story of someone similar to them, they’re more likely to believe that you’re willing to invest the time in their own development. 

appealing to graduates

4. Consider internships and placements 

Internships and placements offer a great route for many graduates to build up their skills and get to know the charity sector. At the same time, they offer you a fantastic young worker, who may well stay with your organisation for years to come.  

Have you heard of The Kickstart Scheme? It was launched by the UK government to provide additional support for young people on benefits. Its goal is to tackle the problem of youth unemployment and to support organisations in all sectors in their efforts to attract young talent.   

Kickstart incentivises employers to provide job placements to 16 to 24-year olds on Universal Credit. In doing so, it aims to reduce the risk of long-term unemployment in younger generations. 

5. Draw them in with a great culture 

A recent report has shown that 82% of Gen Z workers said they feel “less connected” working remotely and many have expressed concern about the long-term loss of the social elements associated with the workplace. It’s therefore worth trying to highlight the sociable elements of your work culture in your ads. Does your team regularly get together for dinner or drinks (providing its safe to do so)? Do you run any team-building events? Many graduates will be keen to hear about this element of working life.  

happy team members gathered around a table with bookshelves in the background

Be rewarded with dedicated employees 

It’s all about using the right channels and placing a firm focus on career development. Finally, make sure that all your ads are optimised for the digital generation and you’ll be onto a winner! 

Tags: charity sector, charity sector recruitment, Graduates

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About the author

Ewa Jozefkowicz

CharityJob’s former Content Manager Ewa Jozefkowicz has a passion for all things digital, particularly when it comes to UX and writing engaging copy. In her spare time she likes to travel and devour huge quantities of books.