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Stay In Touch! 4 Employee Alumni Programs We Admire

POSTED ON 
March 29, 2022

Business psychologist Anthony Klotz, who came up with the term the “Great Resignation,” predicted the next hiring trend will be the hiring of boomerang employees — and suspects this will be the case for the next five years. (Boomerang employees refers to people who leave a company, but return to work for them again at some point in the future.) 

This makes sense, especially given:

Employee alumni programs are not a new concept (the professional services industry was ahead of the curve here), but have grown in popularity over the years. Benefits they can offer include brand ambassadorship, employee referrals, and yes, connection to potential boomerang employees. Knowing the data points above, will they become a greater focus for organizations? I lean towards a strong “possibly!” 

Whether your company has an established alumni program, one in the works, or is noodling on the idea, below are four companies fostering vibrant alumni communities (and with publicly available information on their programs). 

1. SALESFORCE

20,000 employees | Software

Program features include:
  • Salesforce alumni Slack channel 
  • Salesforce Spotlight Series, a podcast and blog series with current, former, and boomerang Salesforce employees about their career journeys 
  • Quarterly newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest happenings at Salesforce and within the alumni community. (LOVE that they show an example so you know what you’re signing up for. What a compelling, digestible format, too!) 
  • Salesforce Alumni group on LinkedIn 
  • Alumni referral program. If the referral is hired, Salesforce donates $500 in the alumnae’s name to their choice of one of five pre-selected nonprofits 
Screenshot of Salesforce Alumni Network newsletter

2. MCKINSEY & COMPANY

30,000 employees | Consulting 

Program features include: 
  • A network of more than 34,000 former McKinsey employees, working at over 15,000 organizations, across 120 countries 
  • “Alumni Voices” video series that shares a look at what former McKinsey employees are up to today along with an active feed of alumni news and insights
  • Many features are behind a firewall, but it appears there’s also:
  • An alumni directory
  • Space to post and search for jobs, as well as a candidate board 
  • Events and webinars 
  • Alumni groups (perhaps around certain topic/interest areas?)   
McKinsey Alumni Voices Video Screenshot

3. dELOITTE  

245,000 employees | Financial Consulting

Program features include:
  • Deloitte alumni profile series, where they follow the journeys of employees who went on to make an impact, as well as stories of boomerang employees
  • Monthly newsletter that digs into the latest at Deloitte and shares colleague news (with a space to submit updates to be included)
  • Alumni webinar series that provides career development insights 
  • Alumni LinkedIn group exclusively for current employees and alumni 
  • Jobs dashboard for alumni to access opportunities across the market 
  • A dedicated Deloitte Alumni Perks site with access to deals from over 32,000 vendors 
Screenshot of Deloit

4. BLACKROCK  

16,500 employees | Investment Management  

Program features include:
  • Most content is behind a firewall, but it appears they offer:
  • Job postings within BlackRock - with messaging targeted to boomerang employees! 
  • An opportunity to re-connect with former colleagues and explore networking opportunities and events outside BlackRock
  • A chance to stay up to date on BlackRock happenings and news 
  • A nice touch: A message from their CEO underscores their commitment to their alumni community   

Real talk

I recognize these alumni programs aren’t possible without a healthy amount of resources. In fact, in 2021, 38% of organizations allocated more than $100K to support alumni programs, and 17% budgeted $200K or more.  

That said, what I like about these examples is there’s a range of investment – everything from a LinkedIn group to a full-blown alumni portal. So, whether you decide to start small or go big, I hope you find some inspiration for staying connected with your alumni – who may very well become your future boomerang employees!  

Interested in learning more? Give these a read: 

For more bite-sized brilliance, be sure to subscribe to our monthly employee experience newsletter, the Inkwell, and let’s stay connected on LinkedIn, Twitter and Pinterest!

Becky Sennett
VICE PRESIDENT OF RESEARCH

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