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Attracting and Hiring the Right Candidates

The competition is fierce for hiring top talent.

Many say it’s more difficult to find “A Players” than it is to find customers and clients. You are not alone in your conclusion that recruiting and hiring are hard! An understanding of the role marketing plays in the hiring process can help.

Recruitment marketing can be described as the pre-applicant phase of talent acquisition. It’s how organizations attract, engage and nurture talent before they apply for a job.

Recruitment marketing begins with the job posting, or, as I like to call it, a job ad. Your job ad is public; it’s out there for everyone to see – potential job seekers AND potential customers. It’s a marketing document, so choose your words carefully, and target your target audience.

And, remember, a job description is not a job ad. “Other duties as assigned” does not represent your business well.

Recruitment Marketing is not a quick fix, but it’s worth the time and effort. Once your brand is established and marketed, not only will it help when hiring active candidates, it’s also a long term strategy to create awareness for those “passive” job seekers who are not combing the job boards.

Today’s job seekers are savvy, and they are doing their research before they click “apply”.

The numbers don’t lie:

  • 94% of candidates are likely to apply to a job if a company actively manages its employer brand. (Bernard Hodes Group)
  • A study conducted by Boston Consulting Group showed that companies that invest in employer branding could experience revenue growth as much as 3.5% and a 2.5% profit margin increase.
  • Employer brand ROI expectations for employers include an increase in applicant quality by 89% and increase in employee engagement by 61%. (Bernard Hodes Group)
  • Employer brand is critical in attracting and hiring top talent, and the cornerstone of your employer brand is your Employee Value Proposition. Your EVP articulates “what it’s like to work here”. It’s an employer’s communicated promise to its employees in return for them doing great work. It’s mechanism to attract, retain and motivate a workforce and expresses the employment experience your company offers – to both potential and existing employees.
  • Statistics show that a strong EVP can lower cost per hire by up to 50% and reduce unwanted turnover by up to 28%.

Here are some steps to follow when developing your EVP:

  • Research– Your perception may not equal employee reality. Employee interviews, surveys, focus groups, and exit interviews are all great ways to find out why people want to (or dont want to) work for you.
  • Draft– Identify key talent drivers such as performance based compensation, benefits, career advancement, purpose, variety, challenge, freedom etc.
  • Validate – analyze results by categorizing data by key employee groups and then decipher the most common trends and themes among each one. Good practice is to check out what your competitors are doing and make sure yours stands out.
  • Communicate– Remember it all about marketing. You need to focus on where your candidates and employees are and focus there. Job ads, recruiting videos, employee handbooks, social media, career pages and performance evaluations are great places to start.

Finally, simply having an EVP doesn’t ensure success. The difficult part is marketing your brand and embedding your EVP in all of your recruitment, hiring, and employee engagement programs. It is not a “project” to check off your list – be sure you deliver what you promise – long term. Evaluate all activities and make sure that they are on track – now and 6 months from now – and a year from now….

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