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POV: Preparing for Virtual Recruiting

In our current climate, it’s more important than ever for people to come together and help each other. Canvas is bringing the early career recruiting community together to offer support and ideas as we transition into this new age of virtual recruiting.

BreAnn (Bre) Foster, Head of Recruiting Programs at Pinterest, has 6+ years of experience in early career hiring. We asked Bre to share some tips and insights when it comes to hiring inclusive teams virtually. Here’s what she had to say…

With the quick pivot to 100% virtual recruiting, how is your team dealing with the transition?

We knew that over-communication was going to be the key to our success. I worked with my team to create resources and playbooks for each of the following areas so we could quickly scale our efforts.

Build culture over virtual interviews: Give students, and all interview candidates, the same feeling of connection to the company that they get when they come to our offices

Facilitate interview technology: Ensure a seamless technical experience for both interviews and candidates

Coach candidates: Students are anxious and worried about what’s next — recruiters need to be their POC for guidance and support throughout the process

Create interviewer prep kits: Make sure that interviewers know their focus areas and expectations, and are armed with question banks, interview rubrics, etc.

Form a hiring committee: Have a central hiring committee to review offers and establish interview review criteria to determine offer or no offer

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Students are scared that their dream internships will disappear. How can recruiters ease these concerns?

We’re starting to put together contingency plans in close partnership with our leadership team on how we’ll approach our summer programs. Over March and April we’ll be playing around with various styles of programs such as remote internships, micro or project-based internships, etc. We’re learning more on a daily basis and plan to have thoughtful communication out to all of our future interns in the April timeframe.

If a company has to make the decision to cancel an internship program, here are a few ways to stay connected with the students and stay on top of their full-time company list. Be thoughtful about how you communicate the decision and explain the why behind the decision.

Tip #1: Offer students a first option/right to interview for internships or full-time positions for the 2021 year

Tip #2: Send a physical thank you note or care package

Tip #3: Start an email group and provide updates on the evolution of the situation: keep them plugged into how the company is handling it, into the company in general, provide best practices or practice materials to prep them for upcoming interviews in the fall.

Tip #4: Launch a mini webinar series about the company with tips, insights and advice for landing an internship or full-time position, how to use your product, AMAs, etc.

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How is your team using Canvas during this time?

Inclusive sourcing — We’re being very targeted with our candidate searches. The ability to bulk message and focus on reaching a candidate base that we can’t access via IRL events makes a big difference during this time.

Virtual events — It’s important for us to stay connected to prepare for next season. Springtime is meant for talent brand building and relationship management with early career candidates. We are no longer able to build those connections in person with tech talks or informational sessions on campus, but we can easily transition all of those events online.

1:1 messaging — No matter what route we end up taking with our intern season, we’ll need to be in very close contact with students. We can manage those high touch conversations through the platform and make sure everyone is updated at once on the job listing.

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