Recruitment Marketing uses marketing strategies to promote the value of working for your firm so you can find, attract, engage, and nurture talent before they apply for your job vacancies.
But why would you need it? Well, the way job applicants look for jobs has changed since the pandemic started. In 2019, most applicants would have applied to roles that matched their skillset and proceeded through initial interviews with minimal understanding of whether the company was right for them.
Fast forward to 2021, and something called ‘a secondary search has emerged’. Job applicants now search for suitable roles, but they also search for:
- companies that they like the sound of
- what the company offers
- the ways of working that they want or that suits them
- and maybe even those that match their values.
This blog looks at how the pandemic has shifted the recruitment market and how recruitment marketing can help firms find the candidates they are looking for.
What changed during the pandemic?
One of the biggest trends to emerge from the pandemic is the benefit of flexible working or working from home. Whilst many firms are gradually phasing their staff’s return to the office, there is some demand on firms to consider how flexible working features in the workplace. Hayley Rose from Harvey John, a recruitment firm in the Southeast says, “Many firms I speak to are currently rethinking their future flexible working policies – each taking a slightly different approach. Most candidates I deal with have enjoyed this time working from home. They realise they are more productive from home, and in fact can give their firms more of their time due to not needing to factor in the time they would usually take to commute.”
As businesses are slowly recovering from the pandemic, they have started recruiting again, which means job applicants have more options in their job search. Flexible working when recruiting, or job searching, is now becoming a vital element of consideration.
The pandemic forced many firms to transfer parts or all their operations online, proving that in many cases, location doesn’t need to be a limiting factor for many firms — including when recruiting for talent. As flexible working becomes more mainstream, location will no longer limit the talent pool. On the one hand, this means that more jobseekers compete for the same position, but on the other hand, it allows firms like you to find the perfect hire for your vacancies.
What does this mean for employers?
As a firm, you need to stand out, to actively ‘sell’ yourselves to jobseekers. Whilst this has always been the case, the ability to do it successfully now is more important than ever before:
Firstly, as businesses recover and begin to grow again, job applicants will have more choice about who to work for and under what circumstances.
The uncertainty caused by the pandemic has also made people wary of working in less-established companies or high-risk sectors. Job seekers are now more likely to apply for jobs with more stable and established firms that provide more job security. In addition, although COVID-19 has been devastating for some sectors, it has been very beneficial for others, like IT and some professional services sectors, which have also seen a spike in interest from applicants.
Secondly, offering relevant perks, such as flexible working, health and wellness packages, and sick leave policies for when employees need to care for a sick family member, is becoming increasingly important for jobseekers. For many, the opportunity of remote working is a primary consideration when job hunting. Employers can no longer ignore the option of implementing permanent remote working. Enticing job applicants with a fancy office or a quirky recreation room may be a thing of the past – instead, employers need to show how they will look after their staff. In essence, companies need to impress jobseekers.
Thirdly, firms need to be cognisant of the idea that physical perks can’t replace genuine company culture. When it comes to company culture, firms can no longer rely on a stocked pantry, or bean bags, to replace cultivating healthy work culture and lasting company values. Now is the time for employers to focus on their company culture and begin defining the successful values under which they operate.
Recruitment marketing and how firms can use it to attract talent?
So, if you know what type of talent you are looking for and you have an attractive package to offer applicants, what are the next steps you need to take to promote your vacancies?
Rethink your ‘normal’ job descriptions
For many firms, the first time a job applicant comes across your firm is through a job description, but typically, job descriptions can be unbelievably uninspiring.
Firms with well-written job descriptions get up to 10x more applications (yes, really). Some top tips from flexible working advocates Flexa:
- Use plain English – tell applicants why they should want to work for you and what you want from them.
- Break experience down into “must-have” and “nice to have~.
- Give your words personality, and don’t be afraid to be fun!
Flexa has made a job description checklist that helps Hire Managers to ensure their job descriptions are well written. If you’d like it, here it is.
Use your firms’ website
Have you got a careers page on your website? Use it to tell your applicants your story so they understand what life is like at your firm. Don’t just rely on Indeed or job vacancy sites. Consider creating an in-depth careers page.
And don’t be scared to talk about what flexibility you offer, what benefits you have and how great it is to work for your firm (use staff and their stories to back up what you say).
Use employee stories to promote your firm
People love hearing about other people, and the best way for prospective applicants to find out about your culture is by hearing from people who already work there.
Either through staff case studies or video, you can entice applicants to your firm before they even attend an interview!
You can use your social channels to promote your video and blog content that interested applicants can peruse, and for the wider social network to discover and realise what a great place you are to work at!
Talk about your values
Candidates are more informed than ever before about working conditions, and how they responded to clients (and staff) during the pandemic or challenging times will make a big difference.
People remember what a firm does. How they respond to clients, staff, and their communities during tough times will be remembered forever. During difficult times like the pandemic, employers become the social safety net for many employees, and how firms lead their team through a crisis will determine retention and the ability to attract talent in the future.
Use free ‘advertising’ portals
If you use recruiting sites and job listing sites that integrate with Google for Jobs, you can reach jobseekers that search for jobs using keywords in their Google search.
By structuring the job posts properly and using the proper HTML coding syntax outlined by Google (or the job listing sites), the jobs will be indexed by Google for Jobs and displayed when jobseekers search for related keywords.
Some of these sites include Facebook, LinkedIn, Indeed, Monster, Glassdoor, etc.
Promote your firm and vacancies on social media
Most candidates are using social media, specifically LinkedIn, to research and follow firms that match what they want, so think about using your social accounts to show what life is like at your firm. Whether your clients use social media or not, you can be assured jobseekers are, so regardless, you should make sure you have a presence on social media.
Other available marketing tactics you can use
Other tactics include submissions to industry awards – both mainstream awards and carefully selected employment/HR awards. Whilst this route is a longer-term option, the benefits will be that your firm becomes recognised as an employer of choice.
You can also consider industry event stands and sponsorships. These will have an associated cost, or you can use virtual or in-person networking events that you and your existing fee earners can attend where you can promote your firm.
So, what is next?
All of the tactics above classify as recruitment marketing. It is where you use targeted digital marketing strategies to promote the value of working for your firm to attract, engage, recruit, and retain talent.
A marketing agency, such as Consortium, provides the strategic and tactical capabilities to generate interest in your firm and in the vacancies to attract talent.
If you would like to find out more about what we offer, click here, alternatively contact Lara to find out how we can help you find the talent you are looking for.