A strong and effective corporate alumni network provides many benefits for any organization. It can boost your company’s reputation, increase employee engagement, streamline recruitment, and even provide referrals for job vacancies (to name a few).
Most importantly, it allows you to network with a global community. These all have far-reaching advantages for your business’s success.
Learn more about the sheer impact an alumni network can have on your company’s productivity and profitability with the top 12 key benefits listed below.
What is an alumni network?
In the enterprise realm, a corporate alumni network is a group of former employees belonging to an organization.
An alumni network, otherwise known as an alumni association, can be an informal or formal group. They may have regular meetings or networking events. Even if they don’t have consistent face-to-face meet-ups, members generally stay in touch with each other.
It’s an incredible platform for businesses, allowing members to stay up to date with industry trends, foster relationships, and implement mentorship programs. Used as an enterprise network, it endorses boomerang hires (saving significantly on recruitment costs) and provides an excellent return on investment (ROI).
What is the role of an alumni association?
An alumni association plays a crucial role in forming and maintaining relationships between the organization and its current or former employees. Alumni associations are ideal for networking, fundraising, career advice and development, events, reunions, and more.
It’s a wonderful opportunity to form relationships with new people in your field, whether it be at your physical workplace, or virtually with the broader global community.
The most pertinent aspect for the organization is to ensure that the alumni members are engaged. You can achieve this by staying in regular contact, sending updates, event invitations, alumni discounts, mentorship programs, or expanding your fundraising community.
Academic alumni organizations at universities offer opportunities for career advice from fellow graduates. In the business world, an alumni network is a good source of business contacts and networking opportunities.
How will my company benefit from having an alumni network?
When used to its full potential, your organization will benefit greatly from maintaining a strong alumni association. That’s why so many leading institutions and businesses have chosen to establish one and use Aluminati’s top alumni network software to manage it.
Here are 12 of the best alumni network benefits for companies.
1. An alumni association is also a talent pool
A corporate alumni network is more than a community of former employees and colleagues. It’s also a talent pool of individuals you know are qualified to work at your organization.
These alumni may have left to pursue a new career path, and merely maintain connections for social reasons. But things can always change. Some of your alumni may be interested in job opportunities that weren’t available to them during their tenure.
You can easily manage both your alumni network and your talent pool when you use versatile software. That’s why our product is popular with both alumni and talent management. This reduces the need for heavy recruitment by tapping into the alumni talent pool. It will save your company time and money, as there is no need for separate platforms, and you won’t need to put as many resources into recruitment drives.
Having a strong, well-connected platform can also give your organization access to a wider network – the networks of your respective alumni members. This can help you grow your community with relevant, top-tier talent.
With a highly sought-after platform like Aluminate for Enterprise, you can tap into suitable candidates at the click of a button. This alumni network solution can automatically match people on your database when vacancies become available. This takes seamless recruitment to a whole new level.
2. Alumni networks offer referral opportunities
Another benefit of alumni networks for your business is the referral opportunities they offer. The saying, ‘It’s not what you know, but who you know’ rings true in business. The stronger your alumni relationships, the more access you’ll have to their networks.
Your alumni can connect your company with other qualified individuals they know. Again, this will save your company time and money on recruitment processes.
Support these relationships through in-person events, virtual events, and webinars.
3. They can enhance your reputation, employer brand, and public image
Many members of your company’s alumni are active on social online platforms like Facebook groups, LinkedIn, and Twitter. It’s here that they may discover and interact with other alumni.
It can also be an unexpected marketing opportunity for your company. Positive social media posts about your organization by your alumni will enhance your employer brand and reputation as a good place to work.
When your alumni display their credentials on their social profiles, and business profiles on sites like LinkedIn, people notice. This makes them unofficial brand advocates. That’s why we’re proud of our product’s integration with the LinkedIn API.
4. Business development and partnerships
Alumni networks provide an opening to future business development and partnerships. Your alumni may have carved out careers for themselves at institutions that you’d like to partner with. Here, they are the bridge between your businesses and may facilitate future business developments.
Remember to add all your new business contacts to your central database on your network management platform. Our software also lets you create individual profiles for everyone on your network, so you always have pertinent information accessible ahead of every interaction.
5. Limitless knowledge transfer
Networking events have become more and more popular in recent years. There are numerous benefits to hosting virtual and in-person events. Through networking with your alumni, and empowering them to network with fellow alumni, you facilitate knowledge transfer through the ranks.
Take this to the next level by analyzing the behavior post-events, and understanding your investment and ROI from running alumni meet-ups.
6. Mentorship and networking
Because alumni groups have a wealth of qualified people with unique knowledge, strengths, and skills, many members are natural mentors. Despite their leaving the company for a career change, most notable alumni are happy to get involved in mentoring newcomers to their former roles.
Take advantage of this and have them mentor your new employees. It’s some of the best training you can give your new hires.
7. Boosted employee engagement
How can your alumni network help your organization to improve employee engagement? Easy, through offering alumni members executive content. This could be in the form of resources related to the industry, open job vacancies, organized networking events, and discounts for products or services (to name a few).
Your professional network of alumni members can also be a means to assist with improving employee engagement. New employees will be impressed when they see the camaraderie between management and former employees, and the general community feel of your alumni network.
When your strong alumni network relationships become known, they’ll also make an impression on applicants for new job openings. You’ll keep engagement high by allowing new and current employees to build a community too.
8. Feedback and continuous improvement
Alumni associations are a doorway to continuous improvement. It’s not always easy to be objective about your own company. The feedback you receive from alumni about their experience working for you will help you make data-driven improvements.
When you connect with your alumni, these connections allow you to access different perspectives. You may discover new ways of doing things you haven’t yet considered.
9. You will access valuable industry insights
By taking advantage of your access to these valuable industry insights, you’ll find that two things happen. First, your alumni connections stay relevant and feel needed. Second, you get free advice. It’s a win-win situation for everyone involved.
That’s why a strong alumni network, combined with networking events, should be high on your company’s agenda. It’s your ticket to staying up-to-date with industry trends and public perceptions of your company.
10. Positive company culture and morale
Alumni relations can also contribute to the company culture and morale. The connections formed at these exclusive events will inspire others at your company to join other groups you have established. Your employees will feel more of a bond with each other and with the company.
11. Rehiring alumni – more value, less cost
Companies can save up to $50,000 when rehiring each alumnus, compared to recruiting from the open market. Much of this saving is the headhunting fee that will now not apply, and the rest is the productivity gain due to the sped-up hiring, onboarding, and training process.
Many companies have found that alumni stay longer, perform better, and are happier in their jobs. Best of all, they return with skill sets that they acquired while working somewhere else after leaving your company – skills that cost your company nothing.
12. Invaluable assistance for CSR opportunities
Alumni can serve as a sounding board, and a support network, for your corporate social responsibility (CSR) activities.
This may include volunteering events and setting up donations. Even when not physically involved in these activities, their participation in the initial discussions can help you lay the foundation for your CSR portfolio.
Take advantage of alumni network benefits with Aluminati
An alumni network is one of the best tools any organization can invest in. Naturally, there is a cost involved in setting it up. But the dividends are astronomical.
In this guide, we’ve shown you how having an alumni network can help you build a better, stronger business.
You can make the most of all these alumni benefits with Aluminati. As the world’s most customizable online community platform, we make managing your alumni network easy and tailored to your business’s needs. Request a demo today!