Want Top Talent? Use Universities as Matchmakers

With graduation around the corner, and the demand for creative talent on the rise, the need for more innovative approaches when recruiting top talent is becoming a top concern in companies—and a major source of competition between companies.

Competition in recruiting the top students at elite schools can be so fierce that some organizations are pursuing every avenue they can to identify and attract top talent as early as possible during their college careers. According to new i4cp study, Human Capital Practices That Drive Innovation, high-performing organizations (HPOs) are 2.5X more likely to track talent at the college undergraduate and/or graduate level than low-performing organizations (LPOs).

So what is the best way to track and recruit tomorrow's top talent? A recent article by the Wall Street Journal, "In Job Hunt, B-Schools Play Matchmaker," highlights a trend away from traditional assembly-line type of recruiting and towards more personal, one-on-one connections between companies and students at top business schools. Just as B-schools are working individually with students to play more of a matchmaker role, top organizations are starting to implement recruitment programs that have the same personalized feel.

i4cp member company Qualcomm leverages an intern program to attract technical talent from top universities, and encourages its best performers to return to their schools as “campus ambassadors.” These ambassadors engage with students well before graduation, and through use of internships, events and "swag" giveaways, make students feel like a member of the company. The idea is that students will then pass on their experience with Qualcomm to their peers, which proves to be a much more trusted and effective means of communication.

Qualcomm is just one example of a movement away from assembly lines and toward innovative recruitment programs with a more personal touch. Google has also adapted and/or pioneered many new ways of attracting young minds with bright futures, and their commitment to recruiting the best of the best is apparent in their company success. The bottom line is, if you want more creative people in your organization, you have to find more creative ways to attract them.

Read about other ways to make your company more innovative.