With another school year right around the corner, students will be applying for a part-time job to help supplement their educational expenses. If you’re not an employer on campus, it can often be difficult to figure out a schedule that works for your student employees, while also still meeting the needs of your other employees. Check out these tips to ensure you’re creating a standout employment experience all year long.
Ensure Schedule Consistency: Most employers will require a work availability form to be filled out, but make sure your student employee signs it, to attest that the provided schedule is their true availability. Signing their availability form will also keep students accountable so they don’t continuously try to switch available hours, and if they have to change their schedule due to class issues. Make sure you give a reasonable deadline in which they are required to tell you of necessary changes. Don’t forget to request a copy of their school schedule with any extracurriculars filled in so that you know who you can contact in case you’re in a scheduling bind. This will save you time while making the schedule, as well as help you respect other employees schedules.
Be Flexible: Students constantly face the difficult task of juggling a job, maintaining good academic standing, and enjoying extra-curricular activities. Staying flexible is a great habit of a stand-out employer. Be clear about your minimum hourly expectations, but also make sure to request their preference for hours during any midterms or final exam weeks. And don’t forget about seasonal breaks! See when they will want to work during school breaks, and request a minimum amount of hours in order to provide adequate time off for your other employees.
Offer Credit for School: Depending on what kind of business you maintain, see if you can offer credit or another educational incentive for your student. This can be a great opportunity for both of you. The student should work hard so that they have a good reference on their resume, and in return you receive someone who will work hard for you and your business. Giving hands-on job experience is extremely valuable and highly sought after, so if you’ve had a good experience with your student employees in the past, consider this a chance to open the doors for further collaboration with students and local universities.
Remember Communication and Accountability is Key: Communication is key when it comes to any job, but when you are specifically working with students, it’s important to remember that they are still learning and maturing while trying to balance both school and work. Make notes if they communicate with you that they will need a day off so that both of you are not put in a tight situation. Don’t be afraid to communicate with them that although you are willing to work with them, it is still a job and you will hold them accountable just like you would the rest of your employees. Just like teachers hold students accountable for tests and homework, you should hold them accountable for their work schedule.
Have you had positive experiences working with students during the school year? Share your stories below!
By: Sarah Masa-Myers