The conversations around alumni benefits and the business advantages of corporate networks are becoming louder.
But, while there is strong demand for alumni networks among workers, not all companies take the steps to invest in them. The result is employees set up their own alumni networks, leaving companies out of the loop. CIPHR shares four crucial reasons why these networks should matter to businesses.
The entrepreneurial start ups and companies that employed workers from the PayPal stable will quickly tell you how much the alumni network benefited them. While this may be an extreme example, nothing says you can’t apply it to your business.
The article goes on to quote Betsy Strickland of Harvard Business School, who attended one of HBS’s alumni events. On attending the event, she lauded the alumni network’s unrivaled ability to build relationships and connect with others looking for opportunities to grow their careers, especially at a local level.
Betsy says there is an unparalleled advantage for companies when current employees engage and connect with their alma mater. Ultimately, it’s an opportunity to expand your talent pipeline.
Ira S. Wolfe of Success Performance Systems wrote in Boomerang Employees: Hiring Backwards that re-hiring a former employee costs a third to two-thirds less than recruiting someone new. One way it saves money is by cutting out the need for external recruiters.
Boomerang employees tend to have more diverse experience than their peers. They already understand how your organization works and can jump right in and be productive.
A study by the Workforce Institute showed that 76% of firms are now more actively hiring boomerang employees than ever before. This emphasizes the importance of networking with valued employees on an alumni platform when they leave.
Staying in contact with ex-employees via an alumni network will enhance the employee value proposition (EVP).
Co-founder of LinkedIn, Reid Hoffman, sees particular benefits for employers in alumni’s ability to act as brand ambassadors. In an article for LinkedIn, he wrote: “If they promote a product or initiative on social media or respond to the tweets of customers or prospects, alumni have a credibility that current employees simply can’t duplicate.”
Alumni can introduce you to powerful new connections when they leave your business and then return. They go on to expand their networks and establish new relationships that can be to your advantage.
Provided that the two of you have departed on good terms, this can prove to be an avenue for connecting with new clients. The relationship between brand and returning employee is already established, so your organization doesn’t have to spend time (and money) on generating the lead.
Despite the clear alumni benefits, organizations are still under-investing in their corporate alumni networks. From hiring great talent to gaining new clients, the advantages are substantial and should not be overlooked.
Sign up for early access to the upcoming release of The Alumni Advantage, an end-to-end understanding of how organizations are recognizing and leveraging their former employees, authored by James Sinclair, Co-Founder and Chief Executive of EnterpriseAlumni.