Reading Time: 5 minutes

More companies are focusing on engaging their alumni communities than ever before. Alumni communities offer countless benefits. Publications like Forbes and the Harvard Business Review have been advising companies on corporate alumni engagement for years.

Your alumni network can help you with referrals and introductions that boost business development. Your alumni can give you insights into the latest industry trends, or act as brand ambassadors on social media. They can also drive career advancement in your company long after they have left.

In this article, we explore how maintaining alumni relationships boosts career growth throughout your organization.

What is a corporate alumni community?

A corporate alumni community is a community of former employees with a continued connection to the organization and colleagues they left behind. Therefore, although they physically left the company, they are still involved with it on some level.

How they stay connected

There are several ways to stay connected to corporate alumni communities. Networking events are some of the most popular, both in-person and virtual. However, the best way to stay connected in between event attendance is through a corporate community platform like Aluminate for Enterprise.

7 ways corporate alumni communities drive career advancement

Most of the benefits of alumni communities are well known. However, despite the numerous benefits highlighted in business and HR articles worldwide, little emphasis is placed on their role in career advancement.

Your corporate alumni can contribute greatly to career development throughout your organization. Here are seven ways they do this.

1. Networking opportunities

The top benefit of all alumni communities is the networking opportunities they offer. Your corporate alumni can provide referrals and arrange meetings with other business leaders and professionals. Every former employer you remain connected to is an invaluable resource of these opportunities.

They can help your recruiting team find top talent by introducing them to prospective employees or assist the leadership connect with new business partners that lead to profitable business opportunities. There is no limit to the benefits of regular alumni meet-ups, and that is why we encourage networking regularly.

alumni communities

2. Boomerang hiring from your alumni network

Another way that corporate alumni are making a big impact is through boomerang hires. These are the former employees who later return to the company they left. Boomerang employees reduce the stress, time, and expense of your recruitment and training efforts.

When you continue to see your corporate alumni communities as a part of your talent pool, you will always have experienced candidates in your talent pipeline. When offboarding employees, make a note of those who would be successful candidates for future job openings.

Knowing you always have a few qualified candidates you can reach out to, makes succession planning much easier. Stay in touch with your alumni, because some may want to return at a later date.

Aluminate makes hiring boomerangs easy. Your HR team can post job openings on the digital dashboard, and they will show up to the most suitable candidates for the role. Our virtual chat features make it easy for your alumni to get in touch with your company about the available role.

3. Alumni networks have access to insider information

The members of your alumni communities have access to industry-specific information they might not have had while in your employ. By establishing and maintaining meaningful relationships with these ex-employees you can tap into that well of knowledge.

Alumni networking at special alumni events allows you to socialize and discuss business ideas. But unless you stay connected with your alumni networks year-round, they will be less inclined to share their newfound knowledge. So ensure that you keep these relationships going.

4. Former employees can offer mentorship and guidance

Your corporate alumni network can offer mentorship, coaching, and guidance to junior employees and new hires.

Your former employees are already familiar with your work processes and are thus suitably qualified to offer mentorship and support. And when your corporate community has access to a feature like Aluminate’s mentor-matching, it is that much easier, too.

This offers mutual benefits to the mentor and mentee. It helps their mentees achieve their career goals faster, and alumni continue to feel needed and appreciated by your organization. It also saves the company from setting up extra training and coaching for those employees who need the support.

alumni communities

5. Continuous learning and development

It is not only junior and new staff who benefit from interaction with your corporate alumni network. Other staff members can benefit, too. While the less experienced employees learn from your alumni’s expertise gained in the past, others stand to gain knowledge from what your alumni have learned since leaving.

The members of your alumni network will have acquired new skills in the interim. It is these new skills that can be shared with former colleagues in an environment of continuous learning and development.

In this way, corporate alumni networks continue to contribute to companies they have left. This is easily achieved with a digital library of industry knowledge, which your community members can navigate from Aluminate’s tailored, user-friendly digital dashboard.

6. A corporate alumni network offers industry insights and trends

Your alumni communities provide the chance for lifelong relationships that help your company reach its goals. Former employees have both the necessary objectivity and the newfound valuable insight into industry trends. This is the most direct path to career advancement.

It is only by staying in step with the latest developments that your workforce can produce more innovative strategies. And to stay in step with your alumni, you need alumni management software you can rely on.

7. Alumni-exclusive benefits and discounts

By allowing alumni employees to interact with the company’s current employees, they can all support each other on their respective career journeys.

The simplest way to encourage this social aspect of your corporate community is with Aluminate’s community builder and the Groups feature. This feature allows like-minded individuals to communicate, collaborate, and support one another.

Depending on the industry in which members of your corporate alumni communities now work, they may be able to offer exclusive discounts on career-advancing tech or education to their ex-colleagues. Likewise, you can offer previous employees benefits for remaining connected to the company.

alumni communities

Build your corporate alumni community with Aluminate for Enterprise

Corporate alumni communities are more than just groups of past employees. They are unofficial brand ambassadors, an important source of knowledge and expertise. Most importantly, they can continue to contribute to your organization, driving career advancement and development for current employees.

Whether they are formal alumni networks or informal alumni groups, all businesses can benefit from a dedicated platform for their corporate alumni programs. However, the best corporate alumni program is one that integrates with the rest of your corporate community.

That is why you need Aluminate for Enterprise. It is the most customizable online community platform, ideal for engaging, communicating, and collaborating with your corporate communities.

Request a demo today and see how Aluminate can help your corporate alumni drive career advancement and business development.