How to Retain Your Top Graduate Employees

In such a fiercely competitive job market, successfully attracting and recruiting top graduate talent is a major achievement for any company. However, the real test comes with retaining young professionals for the long term. Graduate employees can bring a fresh perspective to the table as well as a thirst for knowledge which can inject a newfound sense of energy into the organisation.

In this blog, we’re going to look at some of the key strategies you should be implementing within your organisation to retain your best graduate employees:

Training and career development

It’s no secret that many recent graduates are brimming with ambition and a hunger for knowledge that goes well beyond their university years. Now they have left structured education, they’re eager to climb the career ladder and make a meaningful impact within the company. With this in mind, you need to give them the tools to thrive.

One of the best ways to do this is by giving new graduates the chance to train further. Empower them to choose courses and learning opportunities that coincide with their interests and future career goals. Once they are equipped with new knowledge and skills, they’ll become an even more versatile and capable member of your team who is ready to take on any new challenge that comes their way. It’s a win-win situation for both parties— if you allow your employees to flourish, so will your organisation.

Create a great company culture

The way your company operates plays a key role in retaining your top employees. Unfortunately, many workplaces have a toxic work environment which can not only affect the mental well-being of employees but may also force them to make the tough decision to resign.

Additionally, a high turnover caused by a poor company culture can come with significant expenses for the business, such as hiring and training new talent, not to mention the loss of the knowledge and experience they take with them.

Building and maintaining a positive company culture is vital if you’re serious about holding onto your best graduate employees. This can be achieved in the following ways:

Explain the company’s mission and long-term goals
• Foster open and transparent communication.
• Empower and motivate teams through successful leadership
• Recognise and reward employee achievements
• Allow for flexible working arrangements

Re-think your benefits programme

When was the last time you gave some thought to the perks and benefits you offer your employees? Nowadays, companies are putting a lot of effort into creating enticing benefits packages to attract top-notch graduates. Failing to do so may lead to your most talented employees seeking opportunities elsewhere.

It’s not just about offering a great salary. Candidates also consider factors such as pension plans, flexible work arrangements, memberships and social events when applying for graduate jobs.

It’s a good idea to re-think your employee benefits programmes regularly to align with the changing needs and expectations of your workforce – especially if this is the very first time your company is choosing to hire graduates.

Provide a mentor

Shifting into the professional world post-graduation can be an extremely daunting experience for many graduates. The pressures, uncertainties and the infamous imposter syndrome can all contribute to the overwhelming stress. To ease this transition, it may be beneficial to assign a mentor to each new graduate during their first few weeks on the job.

A mentor can become their go-to for guidance, advice or simply someone to answer their questions when they come unstuck. Instead of struggling with unfamiliar tasks and feeling tempted to resign almost straight away, a mentor helps graduates navigate their new role at a more comfortable pace, to gradually build their confidence and expertise.

Hold regular ‘stay interviews’

Many businesses are now choosing to hold ‘stay interviews’ to gain an insight into why employees may leave and what may encourage them to stay. This involves employers asking structured questions to their workforce, focusing on areas such as job satisfaction, professional growth, work-life balance and health and wellbeing.

These discussions provide graduates with an opportunity to express their concerns and discuss any areas where they feel improvements can be made.

By conducting regular stay interviews, organisations can address potential issues early on, ensuring that graduates feel valued, heard and supported in their professional journey. This process not only aids in retaining top talent but also contributes to a positive workplace culture where employees feel their opinions matter, and their individual growth is a priority.

If you’re keen to welcome new talent to your organisation, take the next step by registering with us. As part of this process, you’ll gain access to our wide array of video CVs to find new graduate employees. These video CVs are a new way for candidates to present themselves, offering a more comprehensive view than the traditional paper CV.