There was a time when recruitment was limited to the search, selection and hiring of candidates. Today, it is more commonly referred to as talent acquisition strategy, which includes, in addition to the recruitment process itself, all the actions taken to attract candidates. What has changed? The economic and demographic contexts, among other things. Economic growth in recent years has led to the creation of thousands of jobs in Canada, where the population is aging—and the labour pool is constantly shrinking. Wouldn’t it be naive to deny that this growth is at least partly responsible for the labour shortage that has been affecting the country? In any case, it is imperative for companies to adapt if they want to survive these changes. According to Vincent Mazrou, an employer brand and HR marketing expert, a good employer brand management is an integral part of the solution.
Recruitment Marketing: What Is It And How To Use It?
What Is An Employer Brand?
The employer brand, Vincent reminds us, doesn’t need to be created: it already exists. Rather, it needs to be managed.
But what exactly does it consist of? Vincent evokes his theoretical definition, as enunciated by its founder, Simon Barrow, towards the end of the 20th century:
“The employer brand is defined as the functional, economic and psychological offer of the benefits offered by the job and as proposed by the employer.
The main role of the employer brand is to provide a coherent framework that enables decision-makers to simplify and focus business priorities that improve productivity while enhancing recruitment, retention and engagement.”
Thus, the employer brand can be seen as a promise to candidates and employees, both in terms of salary and benefits and in terms of the work environment and corporate culture.
Engaging Conversation With Candidates
An employer brand, no matter how strong it is internally, cannot be brought to its full potential without HR and recruitment marketing to make it shine. If the employer brand is the why, Vincent tells us, HR marketing is the how.
He invites us to ask ourselves those questions:
- How do you communicate your promise?
- Through what channels?
- Who are your targets and what story do you want to tell them?
First of all, you need to get to know the candidate you want to attract, the one to whom your message will be addressed. The creation of this persona will guide you in the implementation of your recruitment marketing strategies. Start with your employees; they are the heart of your business. Meet with them, ask them questions and involve them in the process.
- What qualities does your candidate possess? Are you looking for a creative and autonomous employee?
- What skills does your organization need? How will his professional experience make him the right person for the job?
- What are they looking for? What will they gain from accepting a position with you? A good salary? Flexibility?
- Where can you find him or her? What platform will you be able to attract their attention?
A relevant and powerful employer brand requires an organization to take the time to get to know itself and its culture. This is how it will be able to differentiate itself and reach the candidates it needs.
“After all, HR marketing is like marketing. The only difference is that the person we need to convince is the candidate rather than the customer.” – David Bégin, Marketing Director at DataDis, Fleet Maintenance Software Solutions
In terms of communication channels, today, social networks are the ideal platforms for HR and recruitment marketing: Did you know that in 2018, 96% of Quebec adults between the ages of 18 and 44—the vast majority of the available labour pool in that province—used at least one social network per day?.
Use these platforms to talk to your candidate. Tell him or her your story and your company’s day-to-day story. Explain your raison d’être! Bring them to life with videos and employee testimonials. The secret? Authenticity. No matter what medium you use, the portrait you paint of your organization should always be faithful to your fundamental values.
In short, a good HR and recruitment marketing strategy allows you to engage your candidates in conversation—and keep it going.
Recruitment Marketing Tools
Well-orchestrated HR marketing strategies will allow you to generate interest in your ideal candidate. What’s next? In 2021, the Careers page is a tool that no company wishing to optimize its employer brand management should neglect. While there are other communication channels whose relevance is well established, the Careers page has a decisive influence on the candidate experience, in addition to the advantage of being customized to reflect the colors, values and even the culture of an organization. In addition, more often than not, it is to a company’s Careers page that candidates are redirected when they wish to apply for a job. Let’s not forget: making a good impression matters.
For a company that has an application tracking software (ATS), the Careers page promises additional benefits. First of all, ATS allows the recruiter to post a job offer in the software and instantly propel it to the Careers page and selected jobboards (Glassdoor Canada, Indeed, etc.). The same applies to applications received via the Careers page, which are automatically sent to the tool when a candidate applies. In all cases, the recruiter saves time.
Essentially, the ATS is used to optimize the recruitment process. By allowing the recruiter to centralize the applications received, communicate effectively with candidates, keep track of their notes and conduct specific keyword searches, the use of an ATS maximizes the recruiter’s chances of hiring the best talent.
There are other marketing tools you can use to reach to your ideal candidates. Those resources might help you!
Remote Recruitment Marketing
The COVID-19 pandemic has profoundly affected hiring processes. How can the company’s employer brand be highlighted in remote recruitment contexts? How can we engage in meaningful conversations with candidates distantly? Social networks and recruitment marketing tools are of course invaluable allies to ensure that your hiring is attracting motivated remote candidates. Another great approach is proposed by Elementor’s HR Marketing Team Leader:
“Transitioning into remote work presented our department with a pretty significant challenge: How do we continue to present Elementor as a desirable company to work for when we couldn’t show what life at Elementor actually looks like?
So, we pivoted. We turned the camera towards what really makes the company what it is – its employees.
We created a video series in which individual team members shared their remote work experience. Employees showcased how they overcame this unexpected reality en route to a year of unprecedented growth. Participating team members mentioned how this helped enhance their commitment to the company.
And, most importantly, new recruits would mention how these videos helped them in their decision to join us.”
– Ofek Gilboa, HR Marketing Team Leader for Elementor, the world’s leading WordPress website builder
With the current events and the ongoing expansion of remote work, using videos to highlight your company’s values, brand and employees is definitely an effective way to make your remote recruitment attractive for motivated candidates.
In conclusion, it is essential for companies to open their eyes to these new concepts. Employer branding, recruitment marketing and the various tools that help improve the candidate experience and optimize the recruitment process are all part of the answer to the vast question that employers are all asking themselves : How do you attract the best candidates – and keep them?