In August 2021, Handshake hosted a Back to School Product Roadmap Webinar to share details on new and upcoming product releases that will help your team thrive this fall. You can watch the webinar recording here.
As we head into the new school year, Handshake is focused on initiatives that build career equity, facilitate relationships, and increase access to opportunity. Read on for highlights from our fall product roadmap.
Building Career Equity
Handshake’s work to build career equity seeks to blaze a path for student social mobility. For career centers, we aim to help your office align with institutional strategic plans and outcomes.
LIVE: Self-Reported Race/Ethnicity
The ability for students to self-report their race/ethnicity in Handshake launched over the summer. If a student chooses to disclose this information, it’s shared (anonymized and aggregated) with premium employers to help them craft campaigns and connect with more students of underrepresented backgrounds.
LIVE: New Engagement Dashboards
We also launched three new dashboards that help your team monitor your impact and tell your story:
- The student equity dashboard helps you adapt your engagement strategy and drive more equitable outcomes.
- The virtual engagement dashboard helps you establish and iterate on your long term virtual strategy.
- The employer relations dashboard helps you identify opportunities to expand your network to better match your students’ interests.
Roderick Lewis, Director of External Relations at the University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill shared how these dashboards have saved his team a ton of time:
“In this past academic year, everyone on my team had a strategic goal to increase the participation rates in our employer-involved events for targeted racial/ethnic minority students and targeted student majors who had historically low participation rates in our career center programming compared to their peer groups with higher participation rates. It was difficult to accomplish this goal because of the time involved in running so many individual reports on all the events and variables – and then having to put the data in a useable format with Pivot Tables. Now, with these new dashboards, it’s actually feasible for us to monitor the participation rates and track our progress towards stated goals.”
Coming Soon: New FDS Dashboards
This fall, we want to build on the impact of our engagement dashboards by releasing about a dozen new first destination survey (FDS) dashboards. These dashboards will help your team easily monitor trends across outcome types, student demographics, and more. Meanwhile, an extensive suite of filters will make it easy to drill down to unique subsets of students and answer specific questions from cross-campus stakeholders.
Plus, as with all dashboards, you’ll be able to schedule these dashboards to be sent to stakeholders or external data platforms with ease.
Handshake is investing heavily in virtual channels that provide a less intimidating environment for students to build relationships. We’re also introducing new ways for your team to expand and nurture relationships with your students and alumni.
LIVE: Virtual Fairs
We’ve released a slew of updates to make virtual fairs an even more powerful channel for fostering student-employer connections. A few highlights include:
- Co-host institutions at multi-school fairs now have greater access to their students’ registration and attendance data. And, they can email students about the fair through Handshake. Learn more here.
- Your team can now promote links to external virtual fair support rooms for students and employers through Handshake. Learn more here.
- Students can send follow up messages to recruiters they met 1:1 at the fair. They’ll see a prompt to send a message after each session, or they can navigate to their inbox after the fair to send messages to everyone they met.
For more details on virtual fair updates, check out our virtual fair release notes.
LIVE: Virtual Appointments
Earlier this summer, we launched virtual appointments on Handshake. Built with seamless, integrated video (that you’ll recognize from virtual fairs), virtual appointments help you provide a flexible, comfortable experience for students no matter where they are:
- Advisors can communicate with students via video, audio, and chat.
- Students and advisors can share screens to review resumes and projects.
- Students can join appointments via the web or the iOS app—Android support coming soon!
This feature is free for all partners to use. Learn how to configure virtual appointments here.
Coming Soon: Alumni Hub
Over the summer, we launched a beta version of Alumni Hub—a new feature to help you engage your alumni network and unlock unique opportunities for your students. With Alumni Hub, you can:
- Uncover new, relevant employers where your alumni work
- Monitor activity of key alumni contacts
- Reach out to alumni for joint programming
Thanks to feedback from our beta group, we plan to make even more updates to the Hub ahead of the launch to all schools later this fall: the ability to email alumni, download alumni information, and a plethora of new filters.
Coming Soon: Virtual Info Chats
Later this fall, we’ll launch virtual info chats—informal, 15-minute video conversations between students and employers. Virtual info chats were born out of students’ desire to connect with employers earlier on in the recruiting process to get an inside look at company culture and available opportunities. They’ll also give employers the ability to personalize their approach to recruiting, and make a more lasting impression on potential applicants.
All employers will be able to offer availability for virtual info chats via 1:1 messages sent to students, and within job postings as well. After virtual info chats launch, we also plan to incorporate data on the connections fostered between students and employers into Analytics so that your team can monitor trends.
Handshake’s initiatives to increase access to opportunity will come to fruition over the next year. These initiatives are detailed in our Reimagining the Employer Trust Score blog post. A few key points:
- The Trust Score provides an opaque, sometimes misleading signal about employer legitimacy that disadvantages small and local employers. We need to change this.
- The process of vetting employers—validating emails, locations, and more—is a time intensive process for our partners. Handshake can take it on.
- Increasing the number of available jobs for your students does not mean sacrificing relevancy. It just helps you serve more students.
- We know your team has a unique perspective on the relevancy of jobs for your students. We will build features that help you embed this expertise into Handshake.
If you haven’t yet attended one of our Reimagining the Employer Trust Score webinars, we highly recommend you attend one of our upcoming sessions in September—more details here. We’ll provide a deep dive into the product updates that will help our vision for increased access come to life and leave plenty of time for questions too.
Product Roadmap Resources
To stay up-to-date on Handshake’s product roadmap, we highly recommend marking yourself as a Handshake point of contact. Doing so ensures you receive timely information from Handshake about new features—including a bi-weekly partner newsletter.
You can also follow the Handshake Announcements page in our Community to receive more granular, bi-weekly product roadmap updates. And, as always, please don’t hesitate to reach out to your Relationship Manager to discuss what Handshake is working on.