When your major is hot… employers start courting you early

And if your major is pharmacology… you start hearing about career directions very early in P-school. According to the University of the Pacific, Stockton, CA, their students are being recruited heavily from early on. This must be heavenly for students, but agonizing, as they must forecast where opportunities will be in three years. They are assuming that health care regulation will shake up their industry, as new laws will force smaller firms out of business.

Labor shortages in critical, less-sexy fields create vaccums for employers, who must swoop in early to attract graduates. But three years early? This is rather new. This is an example of student relationship construction, an interesting phenomenon that usually stems from healthy university-corporate relationships. All it takes is for a firm to announce a meeting, and students will show up.

But how will firms compete to fill many positions, amid a small pool of talent? As positions in any high-need industry come online, through the design of positions as firms retool and shift their business models, the quest for appropriate talent will go online.

Currently, traditional methods dominate: campus visits, referrals of honor students between colleagial employers and professors, and job boards. But as firms in fields like banking, law, and software engineering go on hiring binges, the development of relationships early-on, for students, becomes more critical.

In reality, there is a gulf of information between firms, who ingest graduates, and the student body, who proceeds through school with a narrow lense of opportunity. It behooves firms to start to gather a potential group of excellent recruits early, and groom them with the prospect of stimulating, rewarding work after graduation. But firms must evangelize students early, like Walmart does, when attracting critical pharmacology talent. Otherwise, they must hunt and peck among the new crop of graduates, who have missed out on many months of potential grooming…

The optimal way to recruit young people, is to develop talent while they are in school. Students, especially in the phD areas, are looking for thesis directions, and potential research topics, that have pertinance in the ‘real world.’ Why not impress upon a group of young people, how valid your work is, and how vital your firm’s problems are, and contact young people early, so that they take on a focus in their studies, related to your area?

Ultimately, we achieve higher competitiveness, and we supply better talent to firms when the firms take an interest in the student pool, and build an interest in them early on.


About stefan bund

Founder of Next Acropolis. MS in Information Systems and Technology, Claremont Graduate University... Background in software engineering and teaching.
This entry was posted in campus recruiting, career advice, labor market. Bookmark the permalink.

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