For a growing business, employer branding is essential. Your employer brand reflects how candidates think of you, and in a scaling company while trying to make your name in the market, you can’t rely on reputation alone. Your employer brand comprises of various elements, from how your employees feel about you to your presence on social media. It all influences how candidates perceive you.
This year has (for apparent reasons) seen a rise in remote working. Remote working is a trend we can expect to stick around for many businesses as it opens doors for talent from further afield, which could be crucial in scaling a growing company. When appropriately used, technologies like video interviews could give you a competitive edge helping you to recruit talent no matter where they’re located. However, when you’re recruiting remotely, it’s harder to get a personality across, and it could mean your employer brand is lost in translation. For one thing, your employees may not all be working from the same place, and candidates can’t see them in action when they come to an interview, but also, there’s only so much personality that can translate over Zoom.
For scaling businesses, company culture and employer branding are often the reasons top talent choose them over established corporate names; therefore, it’s vital that even in a remote world, this can be communicated.
Here are just a few things scaling businesses can do to bring their employer brand to life when recruiting remotely.
1. Prioritise employee advocacy
Employee advocacy always has a vital role to play in bringing to life your employer brand; your employees are a trusted voice and have the authority on what life is like in your business. When recruiting remotely, their opinions are even more pivotal in helping you appeal to top candidates. As candidates can’t witness your company culture and office environment for themselves, hearing from someone who has lived and breathed it will help them to understand what a day in the office could be like. Plus, when we don’t have the advantage of shared office space, it is the people that will provide your company culture in their daily chitchat and attitudes to work.
2. Up your social media game
While you may not be able to show your employer brand to future candidates by inviting them into the office, it’s social media’s time to shine. There’s no better place to show who you are as an employer even when working remotely (that just means you have to get a little more creative). Use social media content to add some personality to your business, show behind the scenes and relay your brand messaging or employee advocacy to an engaged audience. If you can’t be in the office, your company’s social media is the best way to bring every everyone together while communicating with potential talent.
3. Tailor interview questions
If you’re trying to showcase your employer brand to candidates, there’s no use in using standard interview questions, especially when the way we all work is changing. When interviewing remotely think about whether your questions work in the current climate and whether they give a sense of who you are as an employer. We’re not suggesting you ask bizarre questions like “If you were a fruit, what would you be?” However, if you avoid asking generic questions that look like they’ve been copied from a website, it will help candidates learn more about you. Think about how your company has adapted during 2020 or your goals moving forward and ask questions based on those, this way you’ll find talent that aligns with your company and ensure your employer brand is communicated effectively.
4. Remember the value of small talk
Job interviews don’t have to be cold, formal and structured, especially in today’s climate. Making people feel at home and comfortable goes a long way, especially in a nerve-wracking situation like a job interview. Even if you’re hiring for complex tech roles, a bit of preamble can go a long way and will reflect well on your employer brand. Take some time to put candidates at ease and also show genuine interest in their lives; this will highlight to candidates that your company is interested in them as a human being, not just their skills.
5. Ask for interview feedback
Candidates have, quite rightly, come to expect feedback after an interview regardless of whether they’re successful or not. Giving candidates personalised feedback rather than a standard rejection letter can enhance the candidate experience and help to improve your employer brand. It also shows you’re considerate and wish to be helpful in their job search. However, there’s nothing to stop you from asking candidates for interview feedback in return.
Right now, as we have to recruit remotely the interview process has been completely turned on its head. For many scaling businesses, the world of remote recruiting is unchartered territory. Asking for feedback through an online survey or even in person after the interview could help to improve the candidate experience in future, it also means that you can tailor the interview process to reflect your employer brand. Asking for opinions is not a sign of weakness in a business; in a scaling company, it improves your employer brand as it shows you’re willing to work and improve your existing processes.
6. Record a virtual office tour
You may be recruiting virtually right now, but sooner or later your new hires will be welcomed into the office, even if it’s no longer on a full-time basis. Therefore, it makes sense to show them where they could be spending time in the future. Recording a virtual office tour and sending it to candidates before onboarding or even uploading it to your social media and careers site can help to show off your physical space but also allow your brand presence to shine through. Make your virtual office tour reflect how you wish to be seen as an employer. If you’re a tech business focused on innovation, make this the tone of the video or if you wish to be seen as a fun, relaxed place to work, make the video more light-hearted and amusing.
7. Make your senior members of staff accessible
When thinking about accepting a job offer even when you’re about to start a job, it’s great to be able to know a little more about the senior people within the business. One thing a scaling business can do in the remote world to enhance their employer brand is to make senior members of staff more accessible to potential new hires. This doesn’t mean you have to have them on individual Zoom calls to every candidate but instead think of ways that candidates can get to know them that isn’t simply a photo and name on a website.
It could be that CEOs and senior members of the leadership team enhance their social media presence, so that they have more of a voice in your industry. You could ask them to record short video introductions to send to new hires, or you could even ask them to write blogs and content to help people get to know about them. Putting faces and personalities to senior people within an organisation is a great way to communicate your employer brand and educate potential candidates about the inner workings of your business.
8. Organise virtual coffee meetups
If you have to make your recruitment process virtual, the chances are you can’t meet your new recruits for a coffee any time soon. Many businesses use the coffee or lunch meetup as part of the onboarding process; it’s a laid-back way to introduce new hires to the team without feeling bombarded with work. It introduces new hires to the broader team and the people they’ll be working with daily, which really helps to bring your employer brand to life and give them a taste of what to expect when they begin working with you.
While it’s not ideal, these introductions can still be run virtually so that your employer brand doesn’t suffer. It’s so important for new hires to meet the wider team. Encourage your team to grab a coffee and schedule a (virtual) meeting to introduce them to the new recruit. This doesn’t have to be formal; it can be as simple as talking about their weekends or even conduct a quiz or group activity to make them feel like part of the team. Break the ice, but keep it in line with your employer brand.
9. Send branded goodies
Everyone loves a gift, especially when they’re starting a new job. While your recruit may not be able to be in the office, there’s no harm in sending them an onboarding pack with some branded merchandise. Firstly, it shows you’re excited to have them on board which will improve how they see you as an employer and secondly the products you choose could send a message about you as an employer and your company values. Your options on products that can be personalised are virtually limitless these days, so go on be adventurous! Chances are they’ll share their surprise on social media which can support your employer branding efforts; spreading the word about your scaling tech business to their network of friends, family and former colleagues.
Talent Works specialises in employer branding for a range of businesses, including scaling tech companies. We use employer branding and digital communications sourcing solutions to help companies find the talent they need to grow. If you’re looking for help building and leveraging your employer brand to connect with talent people, contact us today and one of our experts will be happy to have a conversation with you.