• Four Tips for Managing a Global University Relations Program

    Spotlight for Recruiting Professionals
    August 1, 2012

    When it comes to global university relations, it’s no secret that processes and procedures are different throughout the world. Being flexible and adjusting procedures and practices to meet local demands is critical.  

    “Programs are so different by and even within a country,” explains John Flato, vice president of consulting with Universum. “It makes it very hard, if not impossible, to have one way of doing things.”  

    Following are several strategies Flato suggests for effectively managing a global university recruiting program:

    • Implement practices on the local level—What works in one geographic area won’t necessarily work in another. For example, the recruiting calendar in one country might be very different than that in a neighboring country. Realize this and be flexible enough to work within the standard guidelines of schools in your target area.
    • Tweak your messaging—What resonates with students in one area might not with students in another area. For example, the opportunity to live abroad might be a highly valued employer attribute among students in one area, but not a benefit to students in another. Find out the expectations of the schools and their students in your target geographic area and tweak your approach and messaging to meet those needs.
    • Slide national pride to the side—It’s a common mistake to think that employers from the United States execute university relations better than anyone else. Some employers in other countries have done it as long as U.S. employers, and have built strong and solid relationships with universities bolstered by their knowledge of local processes and practices. Don’t try to impose your organization’s U.S. processes and know-how upon others globally. This business—no matter the locale—is still about nurturing mutually beneficial relationships. Don’t let bravado lead to bad feelings and poor results.
    • Be sensitive to time issues—This is an internal, as well as external, practice. For example, if you have recruiting teams across the globe and hold regular conference calls among university relations program managers, be sure to schedule them at different times to share the inconvenience of 3 a.m. calls caused by managers being located in different parts of the world.   

    John Flato facilitated a session titled “Managing Global University Relations Programs” at the NACE 2012 Conference.  

Four Tips for Managing a Global University Relations Program