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  • Employers Reveal Selection Criteria for Target Schools

    February 08, 2017 | By NACE Staff

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    TAGS: surveys, school selection, nace insights

    Spotlight for Career Services Professionals

    What attributes do employers find important when selecting schools from which to recruit and how does your school match up? Employers responding to NACE’s 2016 Recruiting Benchmarks Survey identified majors offered and quality of programs as extremely important criteria when selecting a target school.

    Nearly two-thirds of respondents (61.5 percent) rated majors offered as “extremely important” and almost half (49.4 percent) gave quality of programs the same rating. (See Figure 1.) Past recruiting experience (43.2 percent) and school accreditation (42.6 percent) were also important. These results were consistent across the various company sizes.

    Meanwhile, with the rise of technology in branding and recruiting, location may not be as critical as it once was. Since 2014, the “extremely important” rating of a school’s location and its impact on determining a target school has decreased from 42.3 percent in 2014 to 39.6 percent in 2015 and 30.2 percent in 2016.

    NACE’s 2016 Recruiting Benchmarks Survey was conducted from May 24, 2016, to August 31, 2016, among NACE employer members; 233, or 24.6 percent, responded. Highlights from the 2016 Recruiting Benchmarks Survey are available on NACEWeb. Participating members can access the full report through MyNACE.

    Figure 1: Target school criteria

    Criterion Percentage of Employers Rating
    “Extremely Important”
    Majors offered 61.5%
    Quality of programs 49.4%
    Past recruiting experience at school 43.2%
    School accreditation 42.6%
    Student body diversity 31.9%
    Location of school 30.2%
    Interest of school’s graduates in the organization 28.4%
    Success of school alumni in the organization 23.3%
    Reputation of school 22.0%
    Retention history of school alumni 20.8%
    Helpfulness of career services staff 15.5%
    National ranking 13.0%
    Salary expectations 9.9%
    Alumni executives 4.3%
    Source: 2016 Recruiting Benchmarks Survey, National Association of Colleges and Employers