So, You Want to Start a Tutoring Organization? Part 2: Recruitment and Selection

In this National Student Support Accelerator video, we’ll be discussing an important aspect of how to start a tutoring program: the recruitment and selection of tutors. 

We will be going over the necessary steps to take when recruiting tutors, what to include in an effective job description, and what to keep in mind when developing and implementing your recruitment and selection strategies. 

When first developing your program’s recruitment strategy, consider the following to ensure that your strategy works efficiently: Proactively develop a strategy that covers how you will source potential tutors, and determine who is best positioned on your team. This will save you time and serve as a roadmap for recruiting more tutors in the future. Regardless of how selective your program’s recruitment is, every program should clearly define your essential tutor qualities. These qualities can depend on your community, value proposition, and training model. Make your expectations clear upfront to prevent problems with tutor retention. If you plan to scale up significantly, consider the requirements that are most necessary. Without a diverse candidate pool, a program cannot recruit a diverse cohort of tutors. Attract a diverse candidate pool by making the application process accessible, and get input from the stakeholder community on where and how to recruit tutors. Lastly, recruit more tutors than you think you will need, and consider creating a “wait list.” 

When creating a job description for this recruitment process, make sure to include a clear job title. A one-paragraph overview of the tutor role should include an overview of the program itself, followed by a brief list of the necessary qualifications to assess the candidate’s eligibility. These qualifications can include candidates’ education, required content knowledge, and legal requirements. Additionally, your job description should include information on pay and benefits, such as health and education, as well as an equal opportunity statement. 

During the recruitment process, it is also important to ask the following questions: WHOM are you trying to recruit? You need at least 4x more applicants than tutors. Set explicit goals for the number of applicants from minority backgrounds to help find a diverse, qualified cohort. Also, decide who the tutors are going to be upfront. Potential options could include college students, recent graduates, or community members. WHEN should the recruitment timeline start and end? When are you going to shift towards tutor training? WHERE will you recruit applicants? Where can you recruit within your students’ own communities? HOW will you recruit applicants? How can tutors apply today? How does your recruitment criteria reflect your program’s Value Proposition, mission, and vision? Lastly, WHY should someone apply to tutor with you? Collect and manage all contact information from prospective applicants. Create opportunities for conversations with current and former tutors. Offer to meet one-on-one with prospective applicants.

When it is finally time to select tutors from your applicant pool, make sure you are taking the following things into consideration: Start by listing all the qualities of your ideal tutor. Then, identify which qualities you will provide training for. What is the baseline content knowledge that all tutors must have before even starting training? Are there beliefs and mindsets that all tutors should hold? Request references. Ask questions like: How would you rate this person's ability to work well on a team? How would you rate this person's openness to receiving and implementing feedback? Finally, involve student voices in the selection process, potentially through demo sessions with prospective tutors. 

Thank you for watching this National Student Support Accelerator Video on tutor recruitment and selection strategies. To find the complete collection of Accelerator tutoring tools, including those utilized in this video, please visit the link here. Thank you! 

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