Recap: Citi Alumni Leader Shares Remarkable Stats on BBC Radio

by Alumni Content in Corporate Alumni, In The News   |    Last Edited: 22nd July 2022

Andrea Legnani – Global Head Of Alumni Relations at Citi Investment Group – good friend of EnterpriseAlumni – appeared on BBC Radio 5 Live’s Wake Up To Money on July 20th, 2022 with some rather interesting stats on all things alumni at Citi.

Speaking to presenter Sean Farrington from his home office in Sardinia, Andrea shared some tips on how the Sardinians keep cool in 40-degree temperatures (“The locals had the foresight to dig their bedrooms below ground level, so they’re a comfortable 10, 15 degrees cooler than the rest of the house”). More importantly, he had some rather eye-popping stats on how effective boomerangs are at Citi.

In short: your hiring success increases because you are hiring the best of your alumni. An alumni is a known commodity: Their pre-existing knowledge of your organization means that they are making an informed choice to return, leading to employees that typically stay longer and are happier in their roles. And you know their capabilities too, which allows you to choose to hire the best people from your alumni candidate pool.

Here’s what we learned from Andrea …

Over 60% of alumni are potential boomerangs …

“We currently employ 210,000 people, with 31,000 alumni members in over 100 countries. 60% of the alumni who joined the Citi alumni network in 2021 signed up to receive job offers from Citi …”

Boomerangs can save you $$$$$! …

“Companies can save up to $75,000 every time they rehire. A third of of this saving is on headhunting. Plus, alums become effective on day one. They already know the systems, they have their internal networks and they may have acquired extra skill sets at someone else’s expense …”

Gen Z and millennials make perfect boomerangs …

“10 years ago, the average tenure at Citi of people was 20 years. Gen Z and millennials stay in their jobs 2.8 years. So although they’re more likely to leave, they’re more likely to come back …”

A whopping 11% of Citi’s employees are boomerangs …

“At Citi, 11% of our current employees are boomerangs. In 2021, we hired back 4,000 alumni.”

Q&A

Andrea Legnani – Global Head Of Alumni Relations – Citi Investment Group, in conversation with Sean Farrington from BBC Radio 5 Live’s Wake Up To Money

Sean: When did Citi start their alumni program

Andrea: We launched the Citi alumni network 10 years ago in connection with the 200th anniversary of Citi. We did it for three main reasons. The first was to reconnect with alumni who we considered important stakeholders. The second was for business reasons. And the third was for potential future talents – rehiring alumni – what we call boomerangs.

S: Do you specifically target these boomerangs?

A: We currently employ over 210,000 people, and have 31,000 alumni members over the world in over 100 countries. We ask them to join the alumni network as they leave, and offer them opportunities to stay connected and enjoy some of the same benefits as they did as employees.

S: How do alumni become boomerangs?

A: We post open positions on the alumni network, and in some cases we actually ask them to come back. Amazingly, 60% of the alumni who joined the alumni network in 2021 signed up to receive job offers from Citi. So there’s a huge interest in people willing to come back.

S: Do you get employees who boomerang two or three times in their career? 

A: We’re now seeing boomerang boomerangs: so that’s a phenomenon. So people who come back to work for Citi, leave again, then come back to work for Citi again. Companies can save up to $75,000 every time they rehire alums – a third of which is saved as you don’t need to pay an external company to headhunt. Plus, alums become effective on day one. They already know the systems, they have their internal networks, they may have acquired extra skill sets at someone else’s expense and they already know where the bathroom is!

S: Is this happening with your competitors?

A: Absolutely. 10 years ago, the average tenure at Citi of people was 20 years. Gen Z and millennials stay in their jobs 2.8 years. In 10 years from now, we’ll have four different alumni networks tapping on the same talent. That’s why it’s important to start now, do it well and make sure that you stay connected so you can give them opportunities to come back. When people come back, they are happier. They stay longer and they perform better. So it’s win-win. At Citi, 11% of our current employees are boomerangs. In 2021, we hired back 4,000 alumni.

LISTEN HERE:

https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/m00199n7

(31 minutes in)

https://www.bbc.co.uk/sounds/play/m00199xr

(16:30 minutes in)