Category: Employer Branding

Star wars image for an article on building an great careers site

How To Build An Epic Careers Site

A long time ago in a job market far, far away, the candidate pool was plentiful, job seekers eagerly awaited the calls of search professionals, and there was greater balance in the universe. Fast forward to today’s war for talent and you will find many disciplines suffering massive global shortfalls of qualified professionals. Information security is one extreme example of the talent imbalance that exists in today’s marketplace. This specific skillset is expected to experience a global shortfall of approximately two million professionals by 2019 (UK House of Lords Digital Skills Committee).

What does that have to do with your careers site? Many employers are not reaping the benefits of this prime storytelling medium (their careers site). Some may integrate an applicant tracking system (ATS), post some generic copy, stock photos, and call it a day. The problem with this approach is what should be a powerful branding tool has left no impression on the job seeker. With no distinct visual identification, candidates will struggle to recall what generic stock photo they were looking at. There was an opportunity to impact every stage in the recruitment funnel, however this opportunity was sadly missed.

A great test to see if your site has limited distinctiveness, thus poor brand recall, is swapping out your logo for a competitor. Could you interchange logos with ease? If so, your site lacks personality and an identity of its own.

“Always pass on what you have learned” Yoda. Below you will find 10 tips for an EPIC careers site:

  1. Know your “why”– I often say, the foundation of your Employer Brand is your Employee Value Proposition (EVP). Your career site is simply the paper (or kindle) to your Employer Brand story. (you can read more about this mindset here). If you don’t know your “why” and have carved out a comprehensive Employer Brand strategy, then you are missing critical foundational elements that yield trust, as well as an almost instant storyboard and natural flow of your site design.
  2. Lose the corporate speak– Do you sound like a corporate drone? If candidates wanted an executive summary, they would read your annual report or check out a press release. It’s time to speak “human”. The degree to which you “humanize” your careers site copy will depend on your industry and brand personality. Regardless of sector, the tone needs to be people centric.
  3. Be memorable and show personality- “In a busy marketplace, not standing out is the same as being invisible” – Seth Godin. Many organizations stay in a more neutral position for fear of making waves. Bold positioning does not necessarily mean being controversial. What it does mean is that you are more likely to have your message truly resonate with your target audience and push them further down the recruitment funnel. Take a stand, have a voice, wackiness and all. Show what makes you…you.
  4. No stock images– Since we are being so authentic, let’s use images of your actual employees. Not models or stock images that are as artificial as the tooth fairy (don’t tell my kids). There is a time and a place for stock photography. A careers site is not it. This is a human experience. Show your humans.
  5. Ensure responsive design– Did you know that 50% of smartphone job seekers completed their application on their phone? If you are not building responsive design into your plan, you are being short-sighted as this number will only increase.
  6. Consider single page scrolling vs a multipage environment– Single page career sites are great for storytelling and sharing the visual narrative. 37Signals found that a single page design led to 37.5% higher conversions. Applying the same logic to application conversions, one could argue the simplicity and “one stop shop” for candidates can translate into more submissions.
  7. UX leads to amazing CX– While that sentence almost sounds dirty, we are talking about candidate experience. A great candidate experience begins with a well-designed user experience, as the career site is a material stop on the candidate journey. Having a user centric approach to the design will help you to delight your user and continue the momentum as the candidate journey advances.
  8. Add a blog- Blogs are a great way to humanize the careers site if the content is employee generated. Blogs not only foster employee advocacy but also help from an SEO perspective. Each back end optimized blog post with keywords, tags, etc. amps up your SEO juice helping the site rank higher in searches.
  9. Integrate an Instagram feed– This adds instant humanization and spirit to your site. Integrating visual social feeds like Instagram provide you with instant and timely photos documenting the employee experience. They quickly build the “know, like, and trust” and it helps keep visual content current.
  10. Power to the people– Have your employees help with content contribution. Employee testimonials are powerful storytelling tools. Keep the quotes short (use long form content in blogs). Ask employees to share their favourite part of working for your company or a fun fact about their team. You will get a mixed bag of responses ranging from professional growth to a little-known competition for an ugly frog trophy. Share the spirit of the company, the rituals, and the wackiness. Place the content on a rotating testimonial carousel for added visual interest.

There are TALENT WARS out there.  Your careers site can be your lightsaber, your most powerful and trusted tool.

Need help designing an EPIC career site? Let us be your Yoda. Hit us up at Powerhouse Talent Inc. www.powerhousetalent.ca

May the force be with you…

 

 

image of employees at work

POWER UP! Employer Branding Tip

Employer Branding Tip: Build employee advocacy! Employees are three times more credible than your CEO when discussing working conditions.  (Edelman Trust Barometer)

Many organization like to control and approve every message.  Build a culture of employee pride and good judgement, liberating your employees to share the journey through their eyes. The development of an employee advocacy plan can help ease concerns of leaders and ensure effective systems are in place for an authentic voice to be heard while mitigating the fear of needing to do “damage control”.

For more information on employee advocacy planning, hit us up at 416 333-4907 or info@powerhousetalent.ca. We love sharing our knowledge.

Peace, Love, & Meaningful Careers!

Powerhouse Talent -employer branding, culture and talent attraction

Damage control: Recruiting talent when your brand has been…

Damage control: Recruiting talent when your brand has been tarnished

In an ever-increasing war for talent, recruiters are working hard to sell employers’ brands. A company’s reputation can affect whether candidates accept job offers, or even apply in the first place. In fact, 69% of job seekers say they won’t apply to a company with a bad reputation, even if they’re currently unemployed.

 

Powerhouse Talent -employer branding, culture and talent attraction

The Difference Between An EVP And An Employer Brand

Being an Employer Brand and Talent Strategy firm, we often get the question, “what is the difference between an employee value proposition (EVP) and an employer brand?”. Let’s dive right in…

An EVP is the “why” around an organization – it’s the attributes of an employment experience that attract and retain top talent. It’s what employees value most, how a company separates itself from its competitors, and the company’s promise to its people.

An employer brand is the creative expression of the EVP and the organizational identity related to the employee experience – it’s ultimately what the organization becomes known for as an employer. We use tools such as logos, taglines, colours, typography, content generation, social media, etc. to convey messages and personality, but in the end it’s a company’s reputation as a workplace.

An EVP is critical to carving out an employer brand that is authentic, compelling, and memorable. If you don’t know your “why” how can you expect others to want to join the journey?

A brand is a fundamental element to a comprehensive people strategy, as a great brand not only attracts your ideal talent but it also unites your current workforce. Employees want to feel part of something bigger than themselves. An energized employer brand with a high degree of employee participation yields pride and advocacy.

To learn more about employer branding, check out our free employer branding webinar here.

Learn about our employer branding programs here. We make building an employer brand feel easy.

 

Powerhouse Talent -employer branding, culture and talent attraction

4 Ways to Lead with Mission and Purpose to…

4 Ways to Lead with Mission and Purpose to Attract Informed Candidates

Searching for a job can be exhausting. Candidates have to screen through hundreds of job postings, hoping to find that perfect job that matches their skill sets and their values, giving them a sense of purpose beyond just making ends meet. The tasks of work are simply more enjoyable when one knows they’re contributing to a higher purpose.

 

5 Things Everyone Should Know About Squeeze Pages for Recruitment Marketing (and Especially Pipeline Building)

5 Things Everyone Should Know About Squeeze Pages for…

If you have not been hanging out in “digital marketing land” for very long, you may not be aware of what “a squeeze page” is. A squeeze page is a landing or lead page used to collect information such as email addresses. They are used primarily for “list building.”

List building? Say what?

List building is the exciting task of growing your audience and following. While social media page likes and followers are cool, there is a lack of ownership. If your account with a particular platform vanishes one day, so does your following.

I know what you are thinking. “Why wouldn’t we just direct traffic to our job postings?”

You can, and should. But a squeeze page is also a great way to get to know and build a unique talent community for a specific niche while simultaneously tapping into the passive market. This technique is intended more for building awareness and community while cultivating a true long-term talent pipeline. Once on the list, you can continue to provide that population value in the form of content in addition to job news. In this process, you are building brand awareness and loyalty. As candidates move through the stages of readiness, they can be directed to a posting or key contacts within the organization.

 

Full article can be found on ERE. Click here.

Employer Branding

What Would Bob Dylan Do? The Classic Rocker Guide…

Employer branding is no longer a nice-to-do, it’s become a must-do in order to attract the game-changing talent we all need in this fiercely competitive market. Talent branding like a rock star requires fearless courage, great stage presence, and a powerful voice – and the yield makes it well worth your while.

In fact, research shows organizations that prioritize employer brand are:

  • 250% more likely to rate their overall talent acquisition efforts as highly effective
  • 185% more likely to have at least a high-level talent acquisition strategy in place
  • 130% more likely to see increases in employee engagement

More than ever, job seekers are sophisticated consumers of content and do their research. Investing in your employer brand strategy helps build a consistent yet distinct message, unity amongst your existing employees, and brand advocacy to help attract your future talent needs.

So how do you make your employer brand sing?

“All I can do is be me, whoever that is… – Bob Dylan

In other words, authenticity matters.

Branding yourself as some bland vanilla organization with the intention of not making waves leaves little to be desired or remembered by job seekers.

On the other of the spectrum of poor branding practices is creating a false impression of your organization and “faking it until you make it.” This depletes brand trust and creates a revolving door for new hires.

Taking the time to go through a brand strategy process pays dividends in the long run. You need to determine who you are, how you wish to communicate your aspirational culture in a manner that is honest, yet inspires your target talent population to hop on for the ride.

Got to build our love on one foundation. – Bob Marley

In other words, don’t build your brand in a vacuum.

Your brand needs to be built on one foundation or “there will never be, no love at all.” The fusion of one’s commercial/consumer brand with its talent brand is critical for building brand equity on both sides. Look for ways the brands intermingle and highlight this marriage in how you articulate your mission.

A great talent brand is founded upon the organizational mission as well as the “why” around joining the journey. This is where meaningful storytelling comes to life. Ensuring the talent brand is not built in a vacuum further enriches the commercial brand and supports longevity for both.

If you plant ice, you’re gonna harvest wind. – Grateful Dead

In other words, the employee and candidate experience matter.

Your brand has a spirit to it. It’s your employee and candidate experience each and every day. Living the brand promise requires an organization to look at each and every touchpoint and evaluate if it lives up to the talent brand that you created.

As famously stated by Jeff Bezos of Amazon, “Your brand is what other people say about you when you’re not in the room.”

Simply put, you reap what you sow. Embody a people first culture and your brand flourishes through employee advocacy. Fail to focus on this critical element and you run the risk of your brand efforts being wasted, not to mention the reputational impact.

According to the CEB, 33% of candidates share their poor experience with friends, and 12% will share it via social media.

You say you want a revolution. Well, you know, we all want to change the world. – The Beatles

In other words, a purpose-driven brand matters more than ever.

Purpose at work matters more than ever. What is your “why”? Embedding purpose into your employee value proposition (EVP) is vital to satisfying this human driver.

From Deloitte’s 2017 Survey, we can see the relationship between organizations with opportunities for social good, and millennials having a more positive opinion of business behavior and improved loyalty.

Keep your eyes on the road, your hands upon the wheel. – The Doors

To sum it up, talent branding like a rock star requires leadership. Are you the captain of your own reputation, or is your organization allowing external factors alone to shape perception?

The talent attraction landscape is changing everyday and there is a war out there. Post and pray as a strategy will no longer suffice.

Welcome to the jungle…

 

(Article originally appeared in Glassdoor for Employers)

Employer Branding

Top 5 Employer Branding Must Dos

The importance of an employer brand has never been greater. It is your personality and how you attract talent to your organization. It builds connection and belonging for those presently employed and a reason for prospective talent to join.

If you are not paying attention to your employer brand, you are not maximizing your recruitment advertising spend and more importantly not building the type of unity that fosters engagement and retention. According to a Glassdoor survey, eighty-seven (87%) of organizations cite culture and engagement as one of their top challenges (Glassdoor, US survey 2016).

Organization identity via a thoughtful and authentic employer brand rounds out the applicant experience drawing in great talent to your organization by providing a peephole into your culture. What does life feel like at your company? Who works there? Why do they work there? Sixty-nine percent (69%) of active job seekers are likely to apply to a job if the employer actively manages its employer brand (Glassdoor, US survey 2016).

So what are the top five employer branding must dos?

1) Marrying your commercial brand with employment brand– It’s important not to lose sight of how your commercial brand and employer brand interact. Carving out an employer brand in a vacuum will yield mixed messages and a phony outcome. The relationship between your commercial brand and the employee experience may seem unclear at times. Below are a few ways to find compatibility and love in this marriage:

  • Does your product do good (Healthcare, a non-profit, life-saving technology, etc)? If so, think about the rewarding employee experience you provide and being tied to that purpose each and every day.
  • Look at the charitable work your organization does. While the product or service may not be associated with a “purpose” on that higher plane, how the team rallies together for community or causes speaks to your “brand”.
  • Think about how the product or purpose is perceived. Is it hip, modern and fun? Is it draped in history and a legacy on to its own? Each attract a unique type of employee.

2) Personality– A bland brand = no game. Too often companies try to stay neutral for fear of taking too edgy a position. Per Aristotle, “There is only one way to avoid criticism: do nothing, say nothing, and be nothing”. Spend the time figuring out who you are and then confidently share it with the world.

3) Authenticity– Marketing yourself like you are a start-up when you are bogged down in hierarchy and process? After finding your personality, it is important to make sure it is real, not who you want to be. Aspirational brand positioning is one thing, misrepresentation is another. You are marketing the employee experience. It needs to be real in order to attract those who will thrive once hired. Embrace who you are…represent!

4) Consistency is king — Great brands don’t regularly change who they are and what they stand for. Train the team and remember, every employee, leader and vendor is a brand ambassador. Brand standards are critical in ensuring a reliable voice.

5) Trust– Consistent messaging also builds trust. Make sure your “brand promise” is honored in all that you do. Honest messaging coupled with a candidate experience that allows talent to understand the good, the bad and the ugly, thus coming into the job eyes wide open makes for a powerful brand, not to mention improved retention.

Use your outside voice!

Ready to power up? Check out LAND YOUR BRAND, our employer branding blueprint. This e-learning course and system teaches as you build your very own employer brand. Check out our full service Employer Branding practice here.