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Aligning Marketing and HR to Attract and Engage Job Candidates

With Wisconsin’s record-breaking unemployment rates, it’s not surprising that most of the conversations around the “business breakfast table” right now have something to do with attaining new employees. What is surprising, however, is how siloed efforts are to connect with job candidates and the lack of knowledge on the job hunt from the candidate’s perspective.   

With the small number of unemployed individuals seeking work, your quest to find the right person may require your company to be attractive to someone who’s not looking for employment; but looking for a change. And his/her journey in deciding if you’re the change he/she wants will be quite different from what may be perceived as a typical job candidate path.

Winning the battle for talent in a fiercely competitive marketplace necessitates new approaches to recruitment that will only come from a deep understanding of what a candidate is looking for and aligning your marketing and HR messages to lead them to you.

I get it. For years, marketing and human resources have coexisted in a friendly, but somewhat detached relationship. So getting them together won’t be easy and it doesn’t help that they are also two of the most time-starved departments in the company. Yet, both departments are focused on influencing and motivating people and research shows there is a direct correlation between people’s experience as a job candidate and how they perceive the company and its products. Perceptions embedded long before a candidate enters the building or fills out an application online.

Bringing these two people-focused divisions together to identify what’s needed to attract and engage a candidate at each touch point is a winning combination for your company. Together, they will see beyond the simple description of what you do and a listing of job duties to what’s inspiring about how and why you do it.

Attracting and engaging a job candidate is not much different than attracting and engaging a customer. It requires the same strategic components – a deep understanding of the audience and his/her journey, the creation of engaging content, and a game plan that leverages the right tools. Yet, it also requires the experience and knowledge to know what is possible and legal when serving people outside and within an organization. Skill sets that come together effectively when your marketing and HR professionals join forces. 

Bringing these teams together doesn’t have to be complicated or time- consuming, but to be actionable it will require a road map.

Start with talking with your last few hires.

  • Map out their job prospecting journey with your company
  • Listen to what they say attracted them to the job and the company
  • Ask if at any point they consider exiting their employment journey with your company and why
  • Ask if they have ever posted their new job on social media or shared details of their new job with anyone in any way

Then, review both external messaging to potential clients and recruitment messaging to job candidates to uncover misalignment and opportunities.

Lastly, together design a plan that leverages the right tools to lead job candidates to your door and one that makes your company an employer of choice.

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