Extensive research in strategic Human Resource Management demonstrates that an organisation¿s success is bound by its workforce knowledge, skills and abilities (Breaugh & Starke, 2000). Recruiting a highly talented workforce has therefore become recognised as a strategic business challenge (Gurtheridge et al, 2005) and this also applies to the recruitment of top graduates (Phillips, 2008). However, SMEs have as of yet remained greatly underrepresented within the graduate market and this dissertation aims to address the issue by exploring how SMEs can become more competitive within this field. Building on previous research on talent recruitment (Maurer and Liu, 2007) the dissertation suggests that recruiting SMEs need to act like marketers, closely attending to graduate work aspirations and employer expectations, fulfilling graduate needs, wants and desires - as long as the exchange also remains beneficial for the organisation. To avoid direct competition with recruiting TNCs in campus campaigns, SMEs are recommended to make use of more direct communication channels such as email and they are advised to attend to information content and specificity very carefully. To differentiate from the competition, SMEs are further advised to engage in employer branding. The recommendations are developed on the basis of primary data as obtained from interviews with prospective graduates
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