Three months. It’s about all the time you have to make a lasting impression on your summer interns, and hopefully convert a handful into full-time hires. As a campus recruiter, when the summer comes to an end, you’ve done your job well if you’ve recruited a superior class of intern talent, effectively on boarded and trained them, and eased them into projects and tasks within their role in your organization. You could say now is the time for a well-deserved pat on the back.
Or, maybe not. As your interns are heading for the door (hopefully at least a few with intentions of returning), you have the unique opportunity to raise the bar on your campus recruiting strategy by collecting their stories and experiences from the summer.
Think about it: Who better to communicate to next year’s potential class what to expect as an intern at your organization? They’ve come to know the culture of your organization, have seen from start to finish any meaningful projects given to them, and have everything fresh in their minds.
Where to start? Focus on capturing content on topics intern candidates care about
When collecting stories from your interns, it is important to keep in mind what qualities in an internship are important to them, and therefore what they would most want to see in a piece of recruiting content.
According to a 2014 study on Millennial undergraduates and post grads’ career preferences, the top three responses for what they look for in an employer were “People and Culture Fit,” “Career Potential,” and “Work/Life Balance.”
Let’s break these down and see how companies are best marketing these opportunities to campus talent. What do they all have in common? The interns are doing the talking.
People and Culture Fit: Zappos
According to the 2014 study, over 70% of Millennial respondents listed People and Culture as something they’re looking for from an employer. Obviously there are people and culture at every organization, so the key part is authentically communicating yours in such a way that allows the viewer to determine whether or not they are a fit.
The innovative shoe company Zappos made a point of interviewing their Seattle interns throughout the summer, the result being a pretty great video capturing their real work experiences along with some awesome footage of the interns in action outside of work, too. The company’s fun-loving culture is made very clear, and they also do a great job of communicating what a tight-knit intern experience it is, which isn’t necessarily for everyone. So if you’re into challenging work, ping pong tables and living with your fellow interns, Zappos may be the place for you!
Career Potential: Deloitte
With around 65% of Millennials citing career potential as a reason to select an employer, communicating the possibilities after a successful internship with your organization is essential. A great way to do this is by talking to a success story within your organization.
The professional services firm Deloitte did just that with once-intern, now tax manager Michelle Nguyen. In a blog post and accompanying video on the careers site, Michelle explains her personal journey of immigrating to America as a child, selecting her college major, and previous experience that led her to intern at Deloitte. Talking through her internship experiences and how she eventually was brought back on full-time and grew from there, it’s clear to viewers the potential that lies in a career at Deloitte.
And in case the blog and video didn’t convince you, they have an interesting infographic that tracks Nguyen’s career path, making it easy to compare how you might stack up.
Work/life balance: Redfin Engineering
In the same study, around 65% Millennials responded work/life balance was important in an employer. Work/life balance can mean something different everywhere, so when a recruiter flaunts his company’s work/life balance, what exactly does that mean?
Redfin Engineering does a great job communicating their intern experience by asking each intern to write a blog post about their experience. Since every person’s experience is different, naturally the different posts bring different aspects of interning at Redfin to life. Together they provide a pretty authentic view into what a summer there looks like.
This one particular post talks about the intern’s experience with work/life balance at Redfin.
What is so great about this post from an employer branding perspective is how it is a story of growth. He talks about how he went into the summer with no idea what to expect, and by the end had a tangible understanding of what it means to work and live your life as a member of the Redfin team. By giving real examples of what work/life balance meant to him, it makes the vague concept easier for future candidates to grasp.
Future interns want to hear from current interns. As a campus recruiter, you currently have a small window of time to capture your current interns’ stories. How will you spend it?