Employer Branding comes with many questions, but none so prominent as its responsibility to communicate messaging that builds employer brand perceptions. Ask a marketing team, and they’ll tell you it’s HR’s responsibility but ask HR, and they may tell you it lies with marketing.
The truth is, communicating your employer brand messaging is the responsibility of everyone in the organisation, as everyone could influence it. How your employees feel about working with you and the messages they communicate about work say a lot about what you’re like as an employer and can severely influence your future recruitment; try to find a candidate who doesn’t check Glass Door reviews. It’s a challenge.
However, the relationship between marketing and your employer branding team – whether HR, an external RPO provider, or just a single person – is significant. If you work well together, it can be magical and help improve your stance in the ever-growing race for tech recruitment. If it doesn’t work well, it can hinder your recruitment efforts and your overall brand image.
Here are just six reasons why you need to get marketing’s buy-in for your employer brand communications:
Utilising the same tools and methods as marketing
To communicate your employer brand messaging, what you really need is recruitment marketing. And, it should come as no surprise that recruitment marketing uses the same tools, methods, and techniques. So, not only will you be using social media to communicate your messages to people beyond your organisation, but you could also use email marketing to talk to candidates, google ads to reach new talent searching for jobs and a range of other communications to spread the word. In fact, the only difference is what you’re communicating. While corporate marketing departments are trying to sell your services or product, recruitment marketing is trying to sell you as an employer. So, your audience may be different, and your messaging may change, but the way you communicate is the same. Therefore, there are opportunities to collaborate, share knowledge and ensure that these digital marketing or other marketing techniques are successful.
1. Creates consistency across your communications
As you’re using the same social media platforms for your employer brand comms and commercial comms, chances are you’re using the same accounts. Therefore, it’s vital that you communicate with the marketing department if you wish to create some consistency across these platforms. Your tone of voice, style of imagery and overall branding should be consistent if you want to look professional to future candidates and customers. If your consumer marketing takes on one style and your employer brand comms take on another, it will look messy, confusing and won’t reflect well on you. The only way to avoid this is to set up dedicated careers accounts for your social media profiles. However, this may not be so worthwhile for scaling organisations as with fewer employees. As a result, you probably have fewer stories to tell.
Plus, if your company is trying to push for something, your recruitment marketing can support this. For example, when the Black Lives Matter protests took over the world last year, many organisations claimed to stand up for diversity and inclusion. However, looking at their employer brand materials, it was clear they weren’t a diverse workforce. By working together with marketing, you can ensure that your messages are all linked and who you are as an employer reflects what you want to say as a brand. If you’re going to talk about equal opportunities and anti-racism, talk about what you’ve done in the workplace to fight this.
Similarly, if you want to show that you’re an innovative, game-changing tech platform, authenticate it from the inside too and celebrate what makes your team so ground-breaking as well as your product. Although, sometimes, it’s essential to realise that your employer brand messaging can’t marry up to the brand message. Say you’re a hotel that promotes relaxation, but your team need to work hard to make this a reality for guests. However, you can still find a way to marry the two together, even if it means getting a bit more creative. For example, when creating employee profiles, ask how they like to relax and link the two while showing your team are dedicated to their job. Regardless, the messaging of your employer brand and corporate brand should find a way to work together to create consistent messaging if you wish for stronger brand communications and better audience buy-in
2. It helps you to find ambassadors and employee stories
Ask any marketing department, and they’ll tell you how tricky it can be to get employees to engage and create content with them, even they don’t want to admit it. Recruitment marketing and employer brand comms only work with real-life stories and faces. Therefore having a bigger team working to collect these stories and build upon these profiles will work in your favour. The more people you task with finding this content, the more stories and volunteers you’re likely to get; it’s only natural people will help their friends and direct colleagues. This means you’ll have more employer brand content to drive your tech recruitment efforts with less need for an incentive to drive it.
Marketing teams should also know the success stories within your organisation and be able to help you promote them. For example, they could have PR connections and media relations to help spread the word and know how to encourage these employee stories online, from styles of content that work to marketing tricks for generating engagement.
3. Your corporate brand is no longer enough
Previously, corporate brands stood alone. It was their prestige and praise which attracted talent, and no one really cared what they were like as an employer as long as they could get the company name on their CV. Now, things have changed. In the last year especially, companies reputations have been even more reliant on how they treat their people. As a result, the employer brand and consumer brand are becoming linked. In part, we have the rise in social media for this as it’s given workers at all levels of an organisation an opportunity to have their say and use their voice. However, it does mean that big-name brands that could previously rely on the name alone to attract the best technical candidates now have to pay more attention to their employer brand and take care of their employees. There’s no longer anywhere to hide. We see so many news stories about job cuts and losses, and if these are poorly handled, they can really tarnish the reputation of a brand.
Similarly, review sites like Glass Door or even Facebook and Google create opportunities for mistreated employees to speak up. Therefore, you have to show an engaged and happy workforce if you wish to stand out in the competitive world of tech recruitment. Promote what you’re like as an employer, from your company culture to the faces within your organisation and celebrate why you’re not only a great product or service but an employer too. We live in a time where transparency speaks volumes, and candidates and customers like to have the complete picture.
4. Collaborate on activities
If you work with a larger team, particularly one with marketing expertise, then suddenly open up. Getting marketing departments on board with your employer brand messaging and communications may present more opportunities for you to collaborate and open up new doors. For example, you can work together on joint social media campaigns, creating themed messaging that works across corporate and employer brands to show better who you are and what you do. You could also use marketing opportunities as a chance to promote your employer brand, like speaking at conferences or webinars; if it’s appropriate, this could be a good time to mention your employer brand or find a way to promote yourself as an employer as you never know who is watching. Either way, collaboration across teams is never bad; it leads to more creative thinking and more exciting ideas.
Therefore, if you want clear and consistent messaging which helps both candidates and consumers to gain a clearer idea of what you’re like as an employer, it’s vital that marketing and HR work together to craft employer brand communications. Whether you’re a scaling tech business looking to enhance your tech recruitment or are a larger corporation looking to improve your image as an employer, consistent messaging is key to success in the age of social media and digital communications.
If you’re looking for help with your tech recruitment, whether it’s employer branding or sourcing the talent to help you scale, we can help. As a tech RPO provider, Talent Works can offer global sourcing capabilities, creative and digital campaigns, and research-based employer brand strategies. In addition, we realise no growing business needs to recruit 12 months of the year. So, we offer a unique, flexible approach that suits the changing nature of the scaleup space, allowing downtime to refocus budgets and focus on building employer brand awareness or value propositions.
At Talent Works, we help some of the world’s most exciting tech businesses from scaleup and beyond to ensure their employer brand messaging matches their consumer and marketing goals. To find out more and to begin your recruitment partnership, contact us and let’s have a conversation.