Whether or not you have implemented an alumni program, you are probably familiar with the benefits of having one. However, you may not know how to maximize those benefits to achieve a successful alumni program.
Through our experience, we have found that the key to a truly successful alumni program is in your network. This is best achieved when organizations choose to implement a comprehensive alumni software solution.
of organizations admit that they do a “a poor job” of attracting and engaging their alumni. With that in mind, it’s no wonder that more programs are utilizing alumni software to do the job. These are the features that must be present in your software to achieve engagement success.
The look and feel of your alumni platform should be cohesive with your organization. Unlike informal networks, such as those found on LinkedIn, alumni software allows you to customize your platform so that it directly reflects your brand.
By customizing your platform, you can reflect your company culture through your branding. Branding your platform helps alumni feel like they are still a part of your organization. As they continue to feel included, they will be more likely to engage and contribute to your network.
Utilizing alumni software gives you the ability to integrate your existing HRIS. This will help you engage your alumni network in two ways:
- HRIS integration allows you to start engaging your employees while they are still active at your organization. This will increase the likelihood that they will join as an actively engaged participant when they leave your organization.
- HRIS integration gives you the ability to access necessary contact information for your former employees. Utilize your stored data, such as email addresses, to send an invitation to your alumni network directly from your alumni software.
SSO integration is highly valuable if your alumni use multiple systems to engage with your organization. What is SSO? defines it as a technology which combines several different application login screens into one. In layman’s terms, SSO allows your alumni easily login to multiple related software systems.
For example, our allows users to sign into the alumni network using their LinkedIn credentials. This reduces the need to manage multiple logins for different portals, ultimately making your network more accessible. A secure single sign on engages alumni by eliminating the headache of remembering multiple passwords to many different systems.
While at your organization, employees develop strong relationships with their colleagues. For many people these work relationships are valuable and are often maintained even after they become alumni.
Your alumni are looking for you to help them retain these connections. To do this, you must give them the ability to invite their former colleagues to join your alumni network. This is easily accomplished by giving them access to a registration invitation feature in your alumni platform. This enables members to continue engaging with former colleagues, while opening a new channel of growth for your alumni network.
Utilizing event scheduling capabilities gives your alumni easy access to view and register for networking events hosted by your alumni program. The right feature will allow you to integrate with your alumni’s calendar and place reminders for upcoming events. These listings help your alumni stay aware of and engaged in what is going on in your network.
This software feature allows your alumni to search for their peers by keyword or specific data fields. These search capabilities allow them to build their professional network with peers that they may or may not have worked with. Giving your alumni the opportunity to find the right connections within your network will enhance the value of their experience and increase their desire to engage with your platform.
When it comes to engaging alumni, content is king. CMS integration capabilities allow you to store content and set guidelines for how it will be shared within your network. With targeted content, your alumni are more likely to connect and engage with information that is tailored for them.
With that in mind, it’s important that your alumni software offer a versatile yet simple system to manage and target your alumni content. Having the right content capabilities is crucial to achieving true alumni engagement.
Having a tool to manage your content is only helpful if you also have a tool to distribute it. Participants in your alumni program will want to receive updates from you regularly. Consistent and continuous communications take time to develop but automating the delivery process reduces the time spent sending each message.
With automated communication, you can schedule emails to be sent to your entire network or target a specific group of alumni. You can also set triggers to automatically send content at certain times during the alumni’s engagement cycle.
Career advancement is one of the greatest benefits your alumni receive when they join your network. While they are interested in maintaining their relationship with you, they also want to develop their careers. Your program should help them by managing career advancement within your alumni network. To receive this benefit and ultimately increase engagement, there are 3 tools that can be utilized.
- This software feature gives alumni access to exploration exercises that assist them in their next career move and facilitate self-awareness.
- Even though they are not your current employees, you can still offer career guidance. Engage your alumni with this feature designed to support participants through their career transition.
- . This is an essential feature to increase engagement for your alumni. An internal job listing tool gives you priority access to rehire top talent as
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