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Graduate Employer Branding Done Right (& With Foresight)

Remember the eve of 2000? We sat on the edges of our seats, primed to respond to impending disaster should the world end as we entered a new century. Twenty years have passed since then, and we’re well into an era that has seen the advent of self-driving cars and blockchain currencies. These achievements signal a commitment to improving the way we live, developing more effective ways of doing business, and creating networks that enable us to reach higher levels of innovation than we ever thought possible.

So why are we still doing so many things the hard way when we can get the results we want without all the elbow grease?


Your Employer Branding Might Be Outdated


If you’ve been at what we like to call "archaic employer branding," you’re probably beginning to sense how this all relates: You don’t have to keep doing the same thing just because it’s what you’ve always done. Things have changed, and they’re going to keep evolving, hopefully led by great ideas toward better places. 

You’re up against a greater amount of competition and confronted with more complex problems. Employer branding and graduate hiring are just two of those challenges, but they deserve significant attention for reasons you’ve probably already encountered. The big question is, what can you do about them? 

How can you portray your company as a great place to work without all the work, and acquire promising new talent?


Your Reputation Is At Stake


How your employees view your company isn’t just their perspective. It’s your company’s reputation based on their experience as contributing members of your team. So, one important way to earn a good reputation is to recruit people who already understand what your company is about. To do that, prospective employees, such as graduate students, need an intimate understanding of how your company functions.


Employer Branding: The Old Way

Traditionally, employer branding relies on the manual efforts of HR. That’s right, traditionally. Traditions are great for family gatherings but when it comes to how your business is publicly represented as an employer, traditions are a game changer –– and not the good kind. 

Check out some of the university marketing methods of HR tradition:

  1. Script copy sponsorship
  2. Career days with shiny event booth roll-up displays
  3. On-campus presentations and tours
  4. Sponsored photocopying (yes, really)
  5. Advertising on school boards (online and good ‘ole fashioned corkboard style)

Are you cringing? Although there’s nothing fundamentally wrong with such methods, they just aren’t as effective anymore because they’re outdated. They also take a lot of time that could be devoted to more critical areas of recruitment and business development.

Higher education students are online. They interact with the latest technologies. They want challenge and opportunity and not just a taste of real business but proverbial sink-their-teeth-into-it experiences to practice, learn, question, and create. That’s precisely the kind of talent your business wants, isn’t it?

Don’t make them sit through presentations or inquire at the student center bulletin board. Engage them with hands-on challenges that meet their hungry, critical minds. Find an LoB designed to build university alliances and strategically connect students with companies in open innovation and action learning challenges.

Employer Branding: The New Way


Welcome to the future. Of course there is still some heavy lifting to do but the bright side is that it can be done for you (we can help). Your hunting-gathering days are over, and now you can focus on validating competencies and refining your applicant tracking process while building your reputation.

How does the next generation of employer branding work?

We connect your company with universities that support experiential learning challenges. As an integrated part of their course curriculum, students join your team temporarily to put their freshly acquired knowledge to practice. They offer ideas, insights, critical analysis, and fresh-off-the-bone intelligence and theory to solve issues your business is facing in order to achieve goals. 

With user friendly SaaS, we run those challenges for higher education students, which also lend insight to organizational need for skills and resources. That is, your company develops a clearer understanding of the type of talent you require by actively engaging students. This process advances innovation, fosters organizational learning, and positions your brand as a competitive, sought-after employer with a rock solid reputation. 

No more thumb tacks.

No more low back pain from standing next to an event booth.

No more xeroxing.

Ask us how you can get started with employer branding done the right way and solve a plethora of long-standing business problems in the process. We’re sitting in the seat of the future now and it has a totally different driver than it did 10-15 years ago. You can’t rely on what you did back then and expect it to work. 

Employer branding with foresight demands a bit of hindsight. You don’t need to repeat the past to learn from it.

Contact us today to build your reputation the right way.


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About the Author

Colleen Thornton is a copywriter with expertise in research and higher education. She holds a Masters degree from Ryerson University in Toronto, Canada, where she participated in several collaborative large-scale research projects in education. Her Master thesis, which investigated educators’ perspectives on inclusive education environments, was nominated for a prestigious award and later published in a Taylor & Francis academic journal. Colleen is a former lecturer, supervisor, and mentor for undergraduate students, and she’s inspired by Telanto’s innovative approach to uniting students with real-world business.

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