The new online platform brings together executive hires and top jobs
Job portal meets career development tool—the WU Executive Academy's new alumni platform is more than just a network: It provides a forum for bringing together sought-after management talent and renowned companies.
The history of networks is as old as that of humanity itself. In the U.S.A., alumni career networks are particularly popular. Austria has some catching up to do in this regard. As a leading player in the field of executive education, the WU Executive Academy, WU Vienna's business school, has for many years helped its alumni network with one another in the course of get-togethers, on LinkedIn and during theme-based events. Now, it has launched a new virtual network for its MBA students and alumni. What makes WU EA Connect special is the fact that it is not only an international career network but also a tool for informal yet targeted recruiting, making it possible for alumni to advertise job openings that are available in their organizations, and giving prospective applicants the opportunity to get in touch with companies by making contact with alumni.
“In the offline world, we have for many years been organizing events, company visits and networking evenings with a view to fostering the interaction between our MBA alumni and our career partners, that is handpicked companies from the public and executive search sectors. Now, we intend to multiply the resulting career benefits in the virtual world,” says Regine Eitelbös, Alumni Relations Manager at the WU Executive Academy. Members can import their existing Facebook and LinkedIn profiles into WU EA Connect and add all the pertinent details about their MBA studies. This will make them even more attractive from a job market point of view. “Professionally speaking, nothing is more important than having the right contacts and the right information. WU EA Connect is designed to provide our students and alumni with extra career support in addition to our offline activities. The initial feedback is very positive and shows that this initiative adds real value for everyone involved,” concludes Regine Eitelbös.
A company that already taps into the potential of WU EA Connect when it comes to finding qualified new employees is Boehringer Ingelheim. Currently, the pharma group employs 7 MBA alumni. Thanks to its close collaboration with the WU Executive Academy, Boehringer Ingelheim has access to an excellent network of highly qualified alumni. As a global player, the company is always looking to get top talent with industry experience on board:
From an HR point of view, collaborating with professional networks is a particularly valuable asset. In a world in which realities are changing more and more quickly, having easy access to qualified candidates is becoming increasingly important. In this context, the WU Executive Academy is an important partner for us because its talent pool gives us access to a community of potential candidates from around the globe.
Intelligent job portal
The platform includes a job portal that has been designed around the specific needs and requirements of community members: With only a few clicks of the mouse, they can advertise and share job openings that are available in their organizations. All they have to do is upload a PDF file and a corporate logo, and add the pertinent details about the job and how to apply.
Alumni can also browse the profiles of exciting talents with a view to networking or getting in touch with them about job openings. The search function of the member directory lets them filter profiles by country, city, profession, industry and position.
“Giving” as a career booster
Studies show that two thirds of people get their jobs through the hidden job market, i.e. as a result of recommendations and contacts. WU EA Connect users bring not only valuable contacts to the community but in many cases also background knowledge, industry-specific information and real-world career tips that their MBA colleagues may find helpful. Upon registration, new members get asked what sort of support they are willing to offer—whether they are interested in acting as mentors, in providing advice to job applicants and business founders or in helping others make business contacts, for example. The community's philosophy is: Give, and it will be given to you. What is more: Seeking help is not considered taboo. Quite the contrary, in the posting section, members are actually encouraged to do so—and at the click of a button, they can get in touch with selected individuals to ask them for mentorship.
Tips and advice in theme-based groups
Sometimes we need other people's opinions and perspectives in order to gain a better understanding of an issue. Or we are simply looking for a piece of good advice. Users can set up their own theme-based groups, for instance to exchange views and opinions on their industries and jobs. Currently, WU EA Connect includes, among others, a group on “energy management”, one on “entrepreneurship” and one on “finance”. It is also possible to form regional alumni groups.
Networking across classes
It goes without saying that WU EA Connect is also about the number one reason for joining a network: After completing their postgraduate training, alumni will be able to keep in touch with their fellows. They will stay up to date and can interact with one another no matter where in the world they are. The program someone attended and its start and end dates are used for the purpose of fine-tuning profiles. And best of all: WU EA Connect automatically displays the profiles of all alumni and current students of a given program. The “people you need to know” section lists exciting individuals who participated in the program in question in different years. Moreover, community members can use Facebook to invite other alumni to join the network.
Always up to date: The latest news and information about events
WU EA Connect members will never again miss one of the WU Executive Academy's exciting alumni events or career webinars. They immediately see who else has registered for an event, making it a lot easier for them to network offline. Moreover, they can share individual photos or entire photo galleries with the community.
Sharing success stories
When it comes to career development, we all need inspiration and motivation. Therefore, WU EA Connect also includes career stories featuring outstanding alumni and their career paths.