Recruitment has become a fractured environment, much like many other industries that deal with outreach marketing. The lessons from the marketing transition to a digital and online global marketplace can be well placed in a recruitment strategy. This helps you brand your company in order to successfully hire the right candidates. Employer branding is key no matter the size of your enterprise.
Find out in this article how employer and company branding through effective marketing strategies are helping HR departments find, hire and retain some of the best minds in their respective industries in the world. By doing so, they are keeping their companies competitive, innovative and filled with great talent.
The Old is Out
Hiring trends have revolutionized even from five years ago. Do not rely on old and outdated methods for recruiting when modern tools can be very effective. With the onslaught of online job boards, national recruiting agencies, LinkedIn and online review sites like GlassDoor; recruitment is not what it used to be. You cannot rely solely on what you used to do, like placing ads in a newspaper (does anyone still do that?)
With the advent of digital recruitment, companies are being inundated with a mass amount of applications and potential candidates looking for work. The real problem with being available to network with potential candidates 24/7 online is the sheer volume you may attract. Of course the same could be true in the opposite direction. What if you are not attracting any candidates because your message and brand is unknown?
Simply because of the nature of the marketing world and the rise of the Internet, social media and mobile phone usage; your company could be a virtually unknown entity. Part of building the right recruitment strategy is branding yourself as a great employer. This message should be very specific and tailored so it attracts the candidates you want to hire.
Part of your message should allude to your corporate culture, rather than pay. Leigh Branham states that 80-90% of employees leave companies due to culture reasons; while 89% of management think it was for higher salary. Your culture message should be a big part of your branding for this specific reason. New recruits are looking for a place they feel comfortable with.
Building a branding strategy combined with improving corporate culture is two very effective ways to start building positive reviews and establishing your company brand. Once you have a brand outline and the corporate culture framework you need to apply it to a marketing message for your recruitment and put it in motion.
Building the Right Message
How do you know what is the right message for recruiting? This can often be a nightmare for business owners. You do not want to “give away the farm” yet you need to attract the right candidates. You know your message is wrong if your potential candidates do not meet your needs. Finding the right voice can be the biggest challenge.
The voice of the message can often help convey your intentions. Think non-traditional and start developing a message that can be used in different media formats across different mediums. You may want to have two different marketing campaigns with slightly different messages because they are targeted to different niche recruitment areas. The same message you post in social media would not be the same one you use in professional forums. Developing video commercials for YouTube, your own HR channel or other video platforms can help spread the message in a different way.
Sometimes that wacky commercial idea seems ludicrous until all your potential candidates are talking about is that commercial and they chose your company because of it. One that recently stood out was the DropBox Puppet Recruitment video found here; or check out the other 12 videos that showcase the right message. Remember to incorporate into your HR PR the same basic tenets of the employer brand you are trying to build.
Company Case Studies
Some of the best branding and messaging examples include Windsor Circle in Durham and Fidelity Investments. These two companies stand out in their branding and messaging respectively.
Windsor Circle, Durham, NC
First Windsor Circle shows off why it is one of the highest rated companies for employee reviews on GlassDoor on their career page. The very first thing they mention is their “vibrant culture.” With videos, text and graphics this website promotes their hiring practices like it’s all they do. Testimonials from employees and a smattering of the perks of working there provide a full picture for any candidate.
Fidelity Investments, Boston, MA
Secondly, Fidelity Investments are well known for hiring financial professionals. Yet recently they knew they might have been missing out on the best candidates in other fields with transferrable skills. Here is where they kept the same messaging, but got creative with their mediums and target markets. They started targeting software developers and data scientists with print ads including bus ads in college towns. When these students started looking for employment, they knew they could always consider Fidelity. Fidelity saw a marked increase in applicants from these fields as a result of the strategy.
Using the Right Tools
In order to develop an effective branding strategy you also need to use the right tools. Part of this approach should include traditional coaching and leadership tools to attract and keep talent, whereas the second set of tools help you craft the right message.
Employee Development Programs
First, you need to offer the right tools to your candidates to show that you will develop them as they want to be developed. Employee development and leadership engagement programs within your company show new recruits that where they enter the company is only the beginning. How they want to develop and move up in the company is up to them. This effective tool for employee retention ensures that employees stay happy, but more importantly helps attract employees.
For smaller companies this may mean a mentoring program with a manager that provides one on one feedback and coaching. This sense of inclusion, mentoring and training builds a trust-based culture that forever changes the dynamic of the company. Effective coaching can be one of your most effective tools for maintaining employee satisfaction.
Secondly, using the right tools for building your PR recruitment campaign can make a world of difference to the actual engagement from candidates. The recruitment ad platform Ongig.com provides amazing value for building your PR campaign. They offer much more than a typical job description by giving you the tools and power to create truly innovative marketing materials to go with your messages. From the use of images and video to other great design ideas they can help you put together a professionally designed campaign across multiple media formats.
Lastly, the actual text of any print ad or the dialogue of a video can make a huge impact on your results. Did you know it only takes 6 seconds for a candidate to turn away from a poorly worded job description or recruitment ad? Textio.com can be a great resource for this aspect of your campaign. Put your message through their tools and see just how bad it is. Sometimes you may not even realize the wording you are using is poorly understood or includes biases that you were not even aware of. With proven, measurable results, they improve your response rate by 20%.
If you are still not convinced about the importance of branding your company for recruitment and employing PR tactics to build, maintain and improve your message, just remember that the most successful companies including Microsoft, Salesforce.com, Genentech and Robert W. Baird & Co. are all top 100 Best to Work For companies that employ these strategies.
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