Human Resources Blog - Spark Hire

How To Tap Into The Best Talent Pool: Your Alumni

You love your university. As an employee there, you fully support its main goal: to educate young adults and prepare them for their futures. Did you know by doing this, you’re also creating a quality talent pool? It’s time to learn how to access skilled alumni to fill your open positions.

Consider what past graduates have to offer:

  • You can be confident in their education
  • They’ve proven their work ethic
  • You know they’re a good cultural fit for the university

Knowing these facts before interviewing candidates allows you to speed up your hiring process. Instead, focus on learning what they’ve been doing since graduation. This will show you if they’re truly ready for the open position.

Now that you see how valuable of a talent pool your alumni network can be, let’s look at the best way tap into the source:

Know how to reach them

Most universities distribute an alumni newsletter. List open positions at the school in this publication. This way you have access to job seekers who are still invested in what’s going on at their alma mater. These types of candidates are more likely to want to contribute to its success.

Put a link to your interview scheduling tool on the alumni website, too. This allows job seekers to record video interviews whenever they’d like. You’ll also have access to a library of information about potential candidates.

Here are some questions to have them answer:

Join forces with career services

A university’s career services center is a great resource for students who are trying to prepare for life after graduation. But many alumni also turn to the center when they’re looking for new jobs. Having a strong relationship with career services allows you to tap into this talent pool.

For example, get a list of alumni who participated in relevant internships while at school. That will give you the names of former students who have the basic job requirements. From there, reach out and see if they want to apply.

Also, keep up-to-date on all the events the career services center holds. These can be great opportunities to network with alumni.

Attend events such as:

  • Job fairs where you can meet both active job seekers and professionals at the booths
  • Career talks where alumni are invited to talk to students about their career
  • Relevant meet-and-greet events

Create a professor referral program

Nobody gets to know students as well as their professors. They get to see firsthand what the individual is capable of. This makes professors a good judge of whether or not a person could be successful as an employee for the school.

Tap into this talent by creating a professor referral program. Keep professors in relevant departments up-to-date with open job positions at the school. Then ask them if they know of any former students who would be a good fit. If the alumnus is worth pursuing, invite them to interview for the position.

Approach a professor referral program the same as you would a normal employee referral program. Keep the following in mind:

  • Be very clear about required job skills
  • Give them information about all open positions — not just those in the classroom
  • Be sure to reward a professor if they refer a quality employee

If you follow these tips, you’ll be able to turn alumni into a very reliable talent pool. Being able to turn to these types of job seekers whenever you need will make your hiring responsibilities much easier.

Josh Tolan

Josh Tolan is the Founder and CEO of Spark Hire, a video interviewing platform used by 6,000+ customers in over 100 countries.