27 April 2020
Recruiting digital student ambassadors remotely

There has never been a more important time to have a digital student ambassador scheme.

As prospective students and applicants face uncertainty and anxiety about their Higher Education future, a friendly face to support them on their journey can make a huge difference.

For those universities that have decided to start connecting their current students online, the lockdown might seem like an obstacle to recruiting ambassadors. But it doesn’t need to be. Even before the world went a bit crazy, many of our university partners carried out their ambassador recruitment completely remotely.

Here are four top tips for getting a crack team of student ambassadors together while you’re physically apart.

1. Get the word out there!

Spreading the word digitally is far easier than pinning up posters around campus! Meet your students where they are online.

Advertise your new positions on internal university social media, internal university systems (such as virtual learning environments) or internal work services (such as UniTemps)

You could also consider asking individual departments to approach students who they think would enjoy the role. Those departments know their students best and might already have an informal scheme.

If you are a Unibuddy partner, you can also use our job specification and other advertising resources to help you create your job ads.

2. Are they right for the job?

The nature of digital student ambassador work is all online, so online is a great way to assess which students are right to be ambassadors.

A good way to assess whether they’ll be successful in the role is to ask them to prepare some example answers to common questions your institution receives. You could also ask them to produce a short blog or vlog, or share an example of something they produced.

Sometimes, you might wish to also interview student ambassadors. You could do this over Skype or Zoom. Given the majority of the role is text based and remote, interviews can be short. It’s a good opportunity to set expectations and answer any questions!

3. Online training 

As many schools move their teaching online, you probably already have a good idea of the sorts of resources available for online training sessions. Using Zoom you can get all of your ambassadors together, and work through activities.

We also run ambassador training sessions: weekly for ambassadors in the US, and fortnightly for everywhere else. Ambassadors can join these sessions if they are new, or need a refresher. If you’re a Unibuddy customer, contact your Customer Success Manager for more information.

4. Managing/paying student ambassadors

Whatever your ambassadors are doing – whether it’s responding to messages, creating content or participating in virtual events – it’s a good idea to incentivize them to encourage them to do their best work. That could be with a payment, which is on average between 1-3 hours work a week for Unibuddy ambassadors.

Many universities incentivize ambassadors with gifts or vouchers. For example an exclusive hoodie for all student ambassadors, or takeaway vouchers they can enjoy at home. You could also run virtual socials, like quiz nights, to maintain the sense of community for your ambassadors.

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