Written by Georgia Champagne, AR Customer Analyst

HBCU Connect, LLC works with thousands of organizations to assist in efforts to reach students and alumni of Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU). This year, Dot Foods has the distinguishing honor of being named #20 in the Top 50 Diversity Recruitment Employers

Dot was recognized for doing an excellent job in our efforts to target students and graduates from HBCUs for employment. We did this by making our job opportunities visible and holding several unique campaigns.

Dot’s History with HBCU

Dot began efforts to recruit from HBCUs in 2016 and has had several campaigns geared toward operational, sales, and IT positions. 

Today, Dot has grown applications and job views from 50 applications/0 hires/5,000 job views to more than 500 applications/3 hires/58,000+ job views. These numbers are exciting, as the competition is with large well-known companies like Amazon, Microsoft, and Cisco.

Being Recognized

According to the HBCU website, to be considered for this honorable list, a company must execute the following:

HBCU-Specific Outreach

“What type of outreach has your organization done to target HBCU students and alumni, as opposed to general market or “diversity” market outreach?” asked HBCU.

Dialogue

“We have a dialogue with 100 percent of the companies on our list to understand their recruitment goals and tactics,” said HBCU. “Without this dialogue, we cannot accurately rank a company.” 

Relationships

“What relationships has your organization established with HBCUs, HBCU Alumni groups, HBCU Student groups, or other HBCU-supporting entities that will result in exposure for your employment opportunities?” asked HBCU.

Visibility

“While it is not required that a company be a client to make our list…” explained HBCU, “…we must somehow be aware of your efforts.”

Ranking Considerations

While it is an honor within itself to make the list of Top 50 Diversity Recruitment Employers, it is even more of an honor to rank as #20 on the list alongside companies like Amazon, Wells Fargo, U.S. Coast Guard, Intel, Walgreens, Nestle, Best Buy, Nintendo, Microsoft, and more. 

When determining a company’s rank on the list, HBCU Connect takes into account four primary factors:

Consistency

Dot has been working with HBCUs as a part of our recruitment strategy annually since 2016. 

Level of Investment

At Dot, we make specific strategies and goals surrounding recruiting from diverse organizations and markets. These campaigns are different from our regular, everyday advertising and shows our investment in our diversity recruitment strategy

Actual Hires

Dot has grown from 50 HBCU applications to 500 HBCU applications since starting this diversity initiative in 2016. We have now officially hired three employees or interns from HBCUs. While that may seem like a small number, we are excited to now have the momentum to build upon it!

Creativity

Our unique approach to the HBCU audience is different from our day-to-day advertising that occurs in the rest of our distribution center (DC) markets. This gives us a creative edge that allows us to better appeal to this particular audience. 

The Dot Experience & Diversity

The Dot Experience has always been all about respect, honesty, teamwork, accountability, and family—ever since Robert and Dorothy Tracy founded Dot Foods in 1960. Their values and mission were always based around treating their employees, customers, and community members the way they would want to be treated.

These sentiments still hold strong 60 years later. That’s the Dot Experience.

Our recruiting strategy puts respecting others and their experiences at the forefront of our efforts. It also encourages a robust team environment filled with accountability, honesty, and a family-first mentality

Our alignment with HBCU Connect’s strategic initiatives is why we choose to collaborate with them year after year. Their diverse recruiting efforts continuously inspire us.

Recruiting Talent Going Forward

According to Pam Kelly, Director of Talent & Inclusion and leader of Dot’s Diversity Leadership Group (DLG), “with more attention to ensuring the right skills, better geographical targeting, and improving our value proposition, we can grow this opportunity as a diversity pipeline feeder for operations, sales, and IT. We will continue working with brand marketing to improve our targeting and keep our content fresh and relevant.”

Pam Kelly

Director of Talent & Inclusion, Dot Foods

As a Top 50 Diversity Recruitment Employer, Dot was featured in the most recent issue of HBCU Connect Magazine and can be requested by sending an email to top50@hbcuconnect.com.

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