The University of Minnesota has recently invested in an expansion of its biotechnology department. Their department is slated to move from a basement office to a new building on their St. Paul campus, in an entirely new facility called the Microbial Cell Production Facility.
Despite its small size, the UMN Biotech center is responsible for creating the proteins, microbes, and other resources necessary for a wide range of pharmaceutical companies and companies with biotech departments to function. They operate on “pilot-scale” levels, producing only small quantities of products for use in research and development pilots.
What this means is that UMN is not just a hub for talented biotech students and fresh graduates, but that over the next few years, both interest and volume of students will increase. Investment in education includes investment in the product of that education. This presents a great opportunity for businesses – both locally around Minnesota and across the US – to establish connections and attract biotech students. The only question is how.
Establish a Local Presence
As the Twin Cities increasingly become known as a science hub, the biotech students of UMN will be less inclined to look far afield for roles. The more promising jobs and positions are available locally the more incentive there will be for graduates to stay in Minnesota.
That means, to attract the attention of UMN students, you need to have a strong local presence. Even if the majority of your operations are done elsewhere, having a local office helps attract and network with students locally and inquire about those willing to relocate later.
Connect with Students on Campus
The best place to find students is on campus. And there are many ways to engage with students on campus. Whether it’s through career-day events, class presentations, or one-on-one conversations, going to the source can be the best way to identify and activate promising biotech students and graduates.
It’s additionally helpful to attract students early; the demand in biotech is high and is only going to get higher. Graduates will have their pick of career options. So any method you can use to connect with students before they’re spoken for, the better.
Streamline Your Hiring Process
Across every industry and all around the world, studies have shown that the interviewing process for biotech roles is among the longest, averaging nearly a month. While this process is necessary to provide adequate verification of the skills of biotech candidates, it can also be enough to turn off many candidates who are hoping for a faster turn-around time. Do anything you can to streamline your hiring process to cut down on this delay, and you’ll find many more candidates willing to apply.
Be Prepared for a Surge
Another influence in the current downturn in employment is the COVID-19 pandemic. Even in biotech, which has a keen interest in studying aspects of the pandemic itself, qualified candidates are thin on the ground. This won’t hold true forever.
Two pressures are going to release the floodgates in the near future. First, as the pandemic lightens up, many biotech students and employees will begin seeking work once more. Second, the pandemic has inspired increased interest in biotech as a field, and the incoming student body will be larger than before, leading to a wealth of candidates. Be prepared for this surge by laying the groundwork now.
Work with Verum Technical
Perhaps the most proactive step you can take to hire top talent in your industry is to partner with Verum Technical. We’re deeply linked to the Twin Cities area and the UMN student body. We’re a reliable and long-standing source of careers for innumerable students passing through the university, including their biotech department. You need only reach out to work with us to establish a dependable pipeline of talented biotech students directly to your company.