It’s hard to find good people. Recruitment and retention is a critical challenge for any EcoCar 2 team, and it can be especially difficult for a newly-established program. The California State University Los Angeles (CSULA) EcoCAR 2 team noticed a major weakness in its recruitment efforts, so the team successfully implemented an aggressive recruitment and retention strategy to ensure the future of CSULA EcoCAR 2.
The team strategy relies heavily on established university networks, such as the College of Engineering, Computer Science, and Technology (ECST), to gain access to a pool of motivated students. The team set up a booth at two university sponsored recruitment events, the ECST Career Fair and National Engineers Week exhibition, with laptops showing EcoCAR 2 promotional videos and a stack of flyers that include relevant information on the program.
The strategy paid off! Membership for the team doubled following these efforts, and the level of excitement has grown exponentially. The team received more than 50 applications from qualified engineering students in all majors. The applicants went through a group orientation before a mentor was assigned to welcome them to EcoCAR 2. The mentorship program increases retention and shortens the learning curve while boosting the job satisfaction of the mentor. The program not only helps keep new members involved, but also helps build an interconnected team with multiple sources of guidance. People are an organization’s greatest asset and CSULA is always looking for new ways to help them develop.
A successful Recruitment and Retention program is essential to any organization, and the CSULA team will continue its efforts to recruit. New members began the training prior to Competition that will allow them to lead the team in coming years, and as several team leads prepare to graduate and pursue their careers, they are delighted that a new group of driven, environmentally conscious students will take the reins.