We’re hearing a lot these days about the difficulties that businesses are having in recruiting sharp new employees. With the
unemployment rate being relatively low, the competition for top talent has increased dramatically as of late.
Therefore, it is more critical than ever for employers to think of their companies’ marketing and communications efforts as being
focused on their workforce development, in addition to selling their products and services. Of course, the two are very intertwined.
Usually the same corporate traits that make you appealing to prospective customers also make you attractive to prospective job
Your organizational values, vision and goals are just as important to your future employees as they are to your valued customers.
However, sometimes companies forget that it is important to compellingly package and promote what is best about them to their
internal as well as to their external audiences.
If your organization is in a hiring mode, you need an actual marketing and outreach strategy for identifying, reaching and influencing
your best job candidates. This plan looks a lot like an external, customer-focused marketing plan:
• It starts with a well-crafted and authentic messaging and positioning statement which identifies why your company is a good
one to work for and is based upon what you believe in and value.
• Review your job descriptions to be sure that they are interestingly-stated and stand out from other companies with whom you
may be competing. Spice them up, as you would an external marketing message.
• Your recruitment plan should incorporate research into the mindset and preferences of your key potential employees. What is
important to them, and what motivates them the most? What are they looking for in an employment situation? How do they
prefer to receive information about job availabilities?
• It should lay out specific strategies, tactics and timelines for recruiting your employees of choice, and should be headed up and
implemented by a senior executive within your organization who can devote the time necessary to do a thorough and
consistent job search.
• It should take a broad view of the search process, reaching out to both traditional and non-traditional referral sources with
your well-defined messages about what you offer that is different and better. If you have a particularly difficult spot to fill,
consider using a recruitment service that specializes in the type of candidates you are looking for.
• Ask your own existing employees to be a part of your search process, supplying them with information and supporting
communications materials to help you spread the word within their circles of influence. You may even want to offer them a
bonus for identifying a candidate whom you hire.
• Word-of-mouth should be a core component of your outreach strategy. Make a comprehensive list of your contacts who
could be instrumental in identifying appropriate candidates and who would even reach out to them on your behalf, if asked.
• Digital outreach and social media will be the backbone of your tactical efforts these days. Be sure that you understand exactly
how to best use Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Google Plus to search for candidates. Allocate a budget for this effort that is
adequate for the task at hand.
• Go where your research tells you they are, whether it be conferences, job fairs, college campuses, and/or community events
which attract your target audience.
In short, pay as much attention to how you package and market your company to potential employees as you do to potential
customers. After all, you can’t have one without the other!
Having owned a PR firm for decades (YIKES!), it’s been interesting to view the evolution of our profession over...