The first rule of recruitment – don’t forget the power of your company brand and treat it like you would a product or commodity. For small to medium enterprises, hiring great can be a challenge. You often compete with the “big boys” who might offer a stronger set of financial perks and your organizational awareness may be smaller too. So how do you compete?
The power of your company brand and unlocking this is the key to success.
Highlighting the things that make your organization different and special.
Not all candidates want to work for a huge organization and be a small fish in a large pond. Millennials more than ever, want to disrupt the market and give back too. Spend time focusing on what makes your organization different and special. Create a communication plan for your team so you can discuss this with prospective employees and clearly showcase your differentiators.
Everyone is a consumer of your brand.
Future employees are just like a consumer. They want to be able to relate and engage with your organization and see there is a strong fit before interviewing with you. So, treat them much like you would a consumer. Target communications (internal and external) to future candidates. Show what it’s like to work within your organization through visual content.
Not all benefits need to start with dollars.
If your organization is one that embracers flexibility and working moms and dads, tell people about this. If your organization champions diversity and inclusion, shout about this. Candidates look at the full spectrum of perks when it comes to fit and choosing where to work. It’s important to think about what your organizational brand wants to stand for, and how you can leverage these benefits during the recruiting and hiring process.
Lots of organizations talk about their brand values or company values. And yet, often candidates are looking a bit deeper and into the hidden values, or the things you don’t shout about. Use the opportunity to be transparent. If something is a work in progress, tell your audience this. If something’s not quite where you want to be, explain what journey you are on and how candidates can play a part in this.
Treat your people right.
Your current employees are the biggest advocates of your organizational brand. And word of mouth is so important. Make sure your employees feel recognized and empowered to help promote job openings. Implement reference schemes for more challenging hires. If you’ve got a great person, the chances are they know an equally great person too.
- Perspective: view potential employees as customers, marketing your small business as a great employer. In doing so, a shift in perspective allows companies to focus on how they deliver value to the end user, or in this case, job candidates. By centering the attention on the needs of the employee, rather than the demand of the employer, a company highlights care and the value proposition of the position. This minor shift in marketing efforts is extremely attractive to talent in the cluttered labor pool.
- Flexibility: this “how-to” step involves heavily promoting company culture. One of the most important factors to candidates who are considering a new job is the ability to have flexible hours, work remotely, and the ability to be engaged in their community and happy outside of work. Even if your company doesn’t offer all these options, it’s important to showcase what you DO offer, and that you value work-life-balance.
Voice: to many workers, voice plays a large role in job satisfaction. Generally, in small businesses employees are offered a larger voice than one granted in a large corporation. Moreover, employees in these positions can wear many hats, working in many roles and utilizing different resources. This can be a great selling feature, especially for Millennials and Gen Z, who value challenges and evolving work responsibilities. Candidates want to hear about these opportunities, especially from those who can speak from experience. Current employees can play an exemplary role as vocal company ambassadors – make sure you use them.