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  • Report Shows Career Centers’ Dramatic Shift to Providing Services, Support Online

    October 05, 2020 | By NACE Staff

    Trends & Predictions
    The concept of virtual connection.

    TAGS: technology, best practices, operations, trends and predictions, nace insights, coronavirus

    Spotlight for Career Services Professionals

    In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, career centers have dramatically increased their ability to serve students online, according to the forthcoming NACE Report: COVID-19 Quick Poll Series.

    Besides career assessments which were only modestly offered online before COVID-19, services that were not typically offered online now are available online. For example, nearly 45% of respondents are offering both career assessments and group workshops exclusively online this fall. (See Figure 1.)

    In addition, both individual and drop-in counseling sessions were offered exclusively online by fewer than 3% of respondents pre-COVID. In fall 2020, 29.9% of respondents are offering individual counseling sessions and 34.2% are offering drop-in counseling sessions exclusively online.

    Career centers’ collective ability to adapt their service provision during a crisis could be beneficial post-COVID as well. If and when career centers return to more normal operations, they will now have increased capacity to serve students online if they choose to do so.

    NACE conducted a series of monthly coronavirus quick polls—from March through June 2020—to assess the impact on and response from colleges and employers in our field. The four quick polls addressed a variety of topics, including office closures, travel restrictions, internships, plans for fall recruiting, on-campus activities, changes in budgets and staffing, revoked offers, delayed start dates, virtual onboarding, and changes in service provision. NACE Report: COVID-19 Quick Poll Series will be available later this month. Full results of NACE’s Coronavirus Quick Polls are available at

    Figure 1: Changes to services offered pre-COVID-19 to fall 2020, overall

    Service/Program Hybrid Mix Exclusively
    in Person
    Exclusively Online Not Offering
    Individual counseling Pre-COVID-19 55.9% 42.3% 1.5% 0.2%
    Fall 2020 69.0% 0.9% 29.9% 0.2%
    Drop-in counseling Pre-COVID-19 23.2% 68.6% 2.0% 6.2%
    Fall 2020 49.9% 4.7% 34.2% 11.2%
    Group workshops Pre-COVID-19 23.1% 69.2% 5.3% 2.4%
    Fall 2020 43.8% 6.7% 44.5% 5.0%
    Career assessments Pre-COVID-19 40.8% 34.3% 16.4% 8.5%
    Fall 2020 43.4% 3.1% 44.5% 9.0%
    On-campus interviewing Pre-COVID-19 32.4% 51.5% 4.3% 11.9%
    Fall 2020 39.8% 5.7% 39.8% 14.7%
    Interview prep Pre-COVID-19 51.6% 39.7% 7.4% 1.3%
    Fall 2020 55.2% 4.8% 38.3% 1.7%
    Source: NACE Report: COVID-19 Quick Poll Series, National Association of Colleges and Employers
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