Are You Tapping Into Your Best Resources? Employee Alumni Programs

A new survey by staffing firm, Robert Half showed that a majority of workers (about 64%) favor job-hopping. In conjunction, according to metrics compiled by ZipRecruiter, the number of job postings outweighed the number of job seekers by the end of 2018. Despite the increased number of job opportunities available, most studies indicate that a majority of roles are filled by means of networking rather than through traditional methods of job search, such as applying through job ads.

With such dynamism in the job market, employers are now showing a refreshed interest in looking for ways to stay in touch with former employees in order to expand and strengthen their presence. One of the ways an employer can stay connected with their staff, even after their employment, is through a formal alumni program. Employers can leverage the strength of their alumni by turning former employees into brand ambassadors, future clients and/or partners, or even rehiring them for a different role down the road.

Starting an Employee Alumni program may seem like a data haul but it starts with a cordial exit process. During off-boarding, HR can seek to understand the employee’s reasons for leaving, their opinions and aspirations, and take the opportunity to communicate the value in being an alumni resource. Networking value can be the primary motivation for wanting to participate in an alumni program, but employers can add additional benefits such as hosting events, extending invitations to speak, incentivizing any referrals, and/or by offering training programs to drive engagement. Once an alumni group starts to take shape, an employer can take further proactive steps in monitoring the community through surveys and communicating periodically in order to maintain relevance.

While technology continues to drive transparency and opportunity, it is more beneficial than ever for employers to stay relevant by fostering connectivity and growth with their employees, both past and present. After all, it is, more often than not, the individual we work with that provides the best learnings and experiences.