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Recruitment 3.0: A Vision for the Future of Recruiting


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Published in the Corporate Recruiting Journal, the full Co-Authored with Amy McKee, article.

Published in the Corporate Recruiting Journal, the full Co-Authored with Amy McKee, article.

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  • 1. RECRUITMENT 3.0 A Guide to Recruitment 3.0 A look at the need to change, adapt, and embrace the new recruiting landscape, or see our companies fall behind. It’s also a glimpse into the strategy of Autodesk talent acquisition in the next 12 months. By Matthew Jeffery and Amy McKee here has never been a better time to be a recruiter. Recruitment 3.0 is and why we all need to change, adapt, T What we do can literally make or break a company. And investors realize this and are asking tough questions and embrace the new recruiting landscape, or see our com- panies fall behind. to company leadership as to how they will attract and re- tain the top talent. Remember the Good Old days of Recruitment 1.0 But, recruitment is changing. Remember the good old days when recruiting was as easy This is not a small evolution but a change that will see as tying your shoelaces. Candidates aplenty. Anyone could the recruiting landscape change forever. So fundamental is be a recruiter. Even HR professionals! the change that it will see traditional recruiters falling be- For some it was as easy as picking up the phone and call- hind and being replaced by new, differently skilled recruiters, ing a recruitment agency and then rocking back, feet on ready for the challenges of Recruitment 3.0. desk, waiting for the resumes to come piling through a few Indeed, it is not only recruiters who will be found obso- days later. lete in Recruitment 3.0 but also many of the current recruit- For the more adventurous, prepared to put in a little more ing leaders in the top companies today, criminally not effort, they took time to post a job description to a job board preparing their Fortune 500 companies for the new reali- and again, relaxed back in an executive leather chair and ties of a changing recruitment landscape. wait. This paper seeks to provide a greater definition of what But, relying on the recruitment agency or posting to a Recruitment Agency Terminology The reality behind the ‘spin’ “Exclusively sourced candidate” They arrived on our job board 20 mins ago and I saw dollar signs and sent them straight to you before other agencies could do so. “Exclusive candidate” They are exclusive to you for only the next five minutes, before I press enter and send their resume to five of your competitors. “They really want your company” I spoke with them 10 minutes ago and reeled off a list of 10 companies that they could work for and they said yes to all of them. “Really sought-after candidate” They have been interviewed 15 times in the past three months but still have not been offered a job. “Your competitors would love to hire this person” They are interviewing them as we speak and I am hoping that three of them want to offer and then I can play you all off against each other, get the candidate a bet- ter salary, and more importantly for me a bigger fee. “We have a great relationship with the candidate” We have not met the candidate but done a quick phone screen and to ensure we get them onto both your and other databases, hence covering any potential fees, we are sending their details to you before other agencies. And we will have a great relationship if they are placed, as I will love the candidate as I will get a chunk of commission that will pay for my holiday to Hawaii! Figure 112 Journal of Corporate Recruiting Leadership | | June 2011 ©2011 ERE Media, Inc.
  • 2. RECRUITMENT 3.0 TIME TO CHANGEjob board was found wanting. It was all a gamble. It depend- perience, who have worked with a company for years anded on the spin of the recruitment roulette wheel that the years, will now be on less salary than the inexperienced newright person for a role, with the right skill set, who was the hire. Hence a new game starts. Hold the basic salary andbest culture fit, who would bring long term value to that start to “woo” and “seduce” with sign-on bonuses, reloca-company, would be looking for a job at that moment in time. tion support, restricted stock awards. Last chance saloonThat’s a lot of coincidences to rely on! A recruitment agency bribery!may not have registered the best candidates.The best can- Deal sealed. Recruiter 1.0 can again slip back into a slum-didates may not be looking at job boards or registered for ber and relax as another req has been closed off their hir-job alerts. Hence recruitment lottery was the gamble that ing list.most recruiters were happy to play. But who wins here? A few days after briefing an agency or posting to a job The recruiter?Yes, in the short term, as they have oneboard, candidate details start to arrive. “Yes,” screams the fewer job to hire and can tick off their metrics like “time perrecruiter, awaking from their slumber. “A shortlist can now fill.”be generated. We are close to getting the job done.” The agency? Most definitely. They have placed a can- Recruiters in Version 1.0 are easily seduced as they look didate at an average 20% fee and their candidate has receivedfor the least effort solutions to close their reqs. Recruitment a bigger offer than expected. A good day’s work!agencies sooth recruiters’ ears with “spin” that points to The hiring manager? Short term, yes. A bum on seat.highly attractive solutions (see Figure 1). Long term, they have questions and insecurity in their mind. Perhaps that’s a little cynical, (and with a British sense Have they selected “the best” for their role? Does this can-of tongue in cheek) toward recruitment agencies, but it’s didate buy into the brand? Are they a long-term hire? Arevery reflective of the core methodologies at work in Recruit- they money motivated? And they have spent more of theirment 1.0. budget to hire this person than they should have hence ques- Meanwhile back to our scenario, Recruiter 1.0 has been tioning to assemble a shortlist to their hiring manager.The hir- The result: More often than not, after six months, thating manager, faced with little choice, has to select a can- candidate has been seduced by another offer and resigned.didate, as they are worried that waiting too long to fill a req They had not developed a relationship or passion for themay result in their headcount being canned. brand. Hiring managers learn the painful lesson that increas- But, unsurprisingly as the hiring manager authorizes the ing an offer to land a candidate rarely buys long-term loy-recruiter to offer, they learn that the candidate has four oth- alty and demonstrates that money is a short-term motiva-er offers. Moving from the “recruitment lottery” of gener- tor when recruiting staff. Being outside the agency reten-ating candidates has ended in “offer poker,” with five com- tion guarantee period, the hiring manager loses all the timepanies all holding different cards.Who will blink first? Who and money invested in the original hire and starts again fromhas the winning hand? nothing. A great hire has “bought into a company.”They respect And so begins the great “recruitment circle of life” again.the brand, feel inspired by the direction of the company, A cynical view? But a reality among many recruiters andlove the feel of the culture, and can see themselves as part recruiting leaders, even in Fortune 500 companies. Howof that company, making the difference for a few years. But scary that this is happening in modern business today. Re-Recruiters 1.0 have not built relationships. They have not cruitment 1.0 is alive and well. And is still very wide-created an emotional bond between candidate and compa- spread and prevalent today. How scary is that?ny. Hence no loyalty exists between candidate and compa- This situation, while suffices for many top compa-ny. nies today and in the past, is unsustainable for the fu- Meanwhile, “offer poker” plays out with companies com- ture.peting with counteroffer against counteroffer (like two box- Such is the poor reputation of Recruitment 1.0 that de-ers wearily trading punch after punch), until someone sud- bates are raging about whether there is a need for in-housedenly slams on the brakes as they realize internal salary eq- recruitment teams. Why can’t hiring managers just speakuity will be destabilized, as those loyal staff, with lots of ex- to agencies direct, post on job boards directly, or even reach©2011 ERE Media, Inc. Journal of Corporate Recruiting Leadership | | June 2011 13
  • 3. RECRUITMENT 3.0 TIME TO CHANGE out to candidates directly via LinkedIn themselves? That’s expanding and all are seeking experienced talent who not the most taxing of skills, is it? can hit the ground running. In some ways, at the root of the friction between HR and • Convergence of talent—i.e. different market sectors recruiting functions is the perception that recruiting has been —are all competing for the same talent, but less in- lazy and a low skill profession, while HR has evolved into dustry-specific talent.Talent can leapfrog between Fi- key issues like performance management, managing teams, nancial Services, Consumer Goods, Retail, IT, Pub- training and development, and clear career paths. There lic Sector, TV, Film, Entertainment, Accounting, should be no debate that a great in-house team offers strate- Mobile. gic solutions unimaginable under outsourcing or leaving hir- • Graduate pool less skilled and equipped for the work- ing managers to their own devices. A strong in-house team force.There’s more competition to attract cream-of-the- can seek to maximize, through their relationships, internal crop graduates. As education across the world adapts referral schemes; target candidates through their CRM data- and a greater range of courses are added to curriculums, base; possess a greater ability and knowledge to “sell” their graduates are receiving a range of quality of education, company; can hold and target events; use social networks (sometimes exceptionally poor in preparing their stu- to build relationships; target and build relationships with dents for their future careers and leaving them in debt the best universities and their “cream of the crop” talent. by thousands of dollars). All companies can attract av- In-house teams should be continually building and retain- erage, under-skilled graduates aplenty.The best com- ing an internal database of talent for the future. An in-house panies want the best graduates. team, with a dynamic recruiting leader, is without any doubt • Talent is less loyal, often in a role for less than two the optimal way forward for recruitment. But only if they years. Companies see greater movement among top- are not anchored by Recruitment 1.0 methodology. tier staff. • Competitors getting smarter in mapping out talent The Talent Landscape within companies and pushing seducing buttons, ben- Before looking at Recruitment 3.0 and the need for efitted by technological advancements such as LinkedIn change, we need to appreciate the current global recruit- Recruiter. ment landscape. All companies are witnessing a tsunami of • Recruitment agencies failing to be creative in attract- changing dynamics in the talent attraction/employment mar- ing unique talent to their databases, hence perpetrat- ket, encompassing: ing “recruitment chess” of the same talent across com- panies. • Global war for talent. A cheesy term for many. For others, it’s a mantra.What is true is that companies are All of these changing dynamics make it more challeng- getting more competitive in attracting and retaining the ing for recruitment to identify and attract the best. “best talent.” Hence the term should be “global war And this will affect the bottom-line profitability of com- for the best talent.” Recruiting on the front line is re- panies as they wake up to their workforce not delivering op- ally determining a business’s future success. (Note the timal business results as they fall back in the war for talent. use of the term “best.” Recruiting talent is not hard; Best talent equals best results. Average talent equals aver- it is the best talent that is the challenge.) age results. • Talent is geographically mobile.Talent will move for As companies lose ground in the “War for the best tal- the best company and best role. There are no border ent,” they start to “introvert.”They start to ask themselves limits to attracting talent. hence leading to a more flu- how they can stop losing talent to competitors. Can they id talent pool. block headhunters from calling their employees? They look • Talent is more demanding. Talent demands career at blocking communication tools, like Facebook, LinkedIn, development and upward mobility. If not looked after MSN Messenger, and Hotmail accounts. The whole “au- and able to grow within a business, talent will leave to tocratic regime of distrust” descends, like a scene from an find a company where they will be nurtured. old black and white ‘B’ movie based on the Cold War. “You • Experienced talent pool is shrinking; companies are shalt not speak to our employees!” … very Business 1.0!14 Journal of Corporate Recruiting Leadership | | June 2011 ©2011 ERE Media, Inc.
  • 4. RECRUITMENT 3.0 TIME TO CHANGE Rather than seeking to block communications, why aren’t Answer: A predictable talent pipeline where companiescompanies looking at things from a different perspective? can identify, hold relationships with, and cherry-pick theIs it not more worrying for a company if their staff are not best available talent. A req is green-lit, and the recruiter canbeing headhunted or seduced away? If not, what does that immediately identify and bring forth into interview the bestsay about the quality of their employees? If your staff are talent.The req is closed with a “AAA” candidate. Job done.not being targeted by competitors and headhunted, that Sounds fanciful?speaks volumes about the quality of your workforce and that Not nearly as unachievable as it would a humiliating issue for your business. Pivotal for compa- So question is how to travel the yellow brick road to thenies is to focus on retention of key staff and answering these end of the rainbow?following vital questions: Two key strategies in building a predictable talent pipeline.• Are employees challenged?• Are they well remunerated? (measured against market • Sourcing: Identifying top talent and mapping out key norms) competitors, (a competitor being defined by where tal-• Do employees have a good work/life balance and can ent resides, as opposed to product competitor). enjoy time with their family? After mapping out the best talent, it is about build-• Are managers close to their employees and is there feed- ing relationships directly, (face to face/video conferenc- back on performance and career development? ing), and indirectly through social communities. The• Do employees feel part of a world-class company that best hire may mean a relationship that is built over has a strong future? weeks and months before that candidate is willing to• Can employees see a ladder of opportunity and strong join a company. Graduate recruitment also fits into this promotion prospects’ bucket as it is about identifying the top courses in the• Are employees being developed? What training and de- best universities and mapping out the top performers velopment programs are in place? through campus relationships. All of this reduces the• Are employee ideas listened to and they receive feed- random elements of recruiting. back on them?• Is senior management approachable and they regular- • Employment Brand and Recruitment Marketing: ly communicate or living in ivory towers? The goal is building a wider reputation as a destina-• Is the culture fun and people feeling part of a family? tion for top talent by humanizing the company brand to reveal what happens within the four walls of your If there are any negatives above, especially if there are company and behind the spin of corporate PR/market-many, then those employees are rightfully subject to the prey ing. By engaging in a transparent two-way communi-of a good headhunter and can be readily seduced by oth- cation with talent, building an engaged set of commu-er opportunities. nities, hungry to participate in your created content, If someone is happy, however good the headhunter and a greater appeal will be generated. Employment brandthe proposition is, it is extremely hard to seduce them away, and marketing should be aimed at taking your com-hence the need for companies to focus on retention than munity on a journey from familiarization of companythe means of restricting communication channels into em- and product, to knowledgeable insight into the com-ployees. pany, ending in consideration of working at your com- So, however cheesy the term is, the Global War for the pany/being one of your brand ambassadors who talkBest Talent is real. It’s happening and many companies are favorably about you to their friends, colleagues, andin danger of losing this battle of attrition. communities.Utopia So, here we come to the gates of the core philosophical Question: What is recruitment utopia? Willy Wonka’s differences between traditional recruiting and Recruitment“Golden Ticket” to the chocolate factory? 3.0….©2011 ERE Media, Inc. Journal of Corporate Recruiting Leadership | | June 2011 15
  • 5. RECRUITMENT 3.0 TIME TO CHANGE The Core Philosophy of Recruitment 3.0: Not every- • When you interview them? one’s looking This is the fundamental underlying core essence of Re- So if they are not a candidate until they volunteer them- cruitment 3.0. selves, what are they? Not everyone is looking for a job. They are your average person sitting and having a cof- Different market research exists, but citing the U.S. Bu- fee in Starbucks, or leading a team at work, speaking at a reau of Labor Statistics, for any given role, only 10% of rel- conference, running down the road, watching TV, or hav- evant/experienced talent is looking for a role at any given ing a pint at the pub. They are everyone around you. moment of time. What turns a regular person into a candidate? That means that 90% of candidates relevant for a A whole host of reasons. “I am not recognised at work role are not looking.The best candidates are typical- for what I do.” “My boss is selfish and never develops me.” ly among them. “My boss seeks all the praise and recognition.” “I am un- Hence in a candidate-short market, with a host of derpaid.” competition for particular skill-sets, the Global War You name it, any reason can transform someone into a for the Best Talent is being fought out candidate. amongst 10% of active job seekers. No So the issue boils down to timing. wonder the trend toward salary infla- Indeed, it is not only A company either waits for the moment tion and sign-on bonuses. recruiters who will be someone becomes a candidate and then Reinforcing this message: the best can- found obsolete in jumps on them, or makes a proposition didate for your role is not likely to be cur- recruitment 3.0 but also that is attractive and tempts them into rently registered on a recruitment agency candidacy. many of the current database or registered on a job board.They At the core of Recruitment 3.0 is that may never search job boards as they are recruiting leaders in the EVERYONE IS A CANDIDATE. We used to direct approach/headhunting. top companies today, create candidates. The best candidates may never have even criminally not preparing Recruitment 3.0 companies are slow- considered working for you; even worse, their Fortune 500 ly realizing great recruitment is about they may have never even heard of you! company to the new building relationships and communicat- Hence Recruitment 3.0 is about iden- ing with people, (hence creating an emo- realities of recruiting. tifying the best candidates in that passive tional connection with them), before 90% of non-job seekers and building a re- they become a candidate. lationship, making them care about your company, even be- Key is how you identify and build emotional relationships friend them, as this will ultimately then bond loyalty, trust, with that talent. and also start to engender emotion in a candidate. The Core Philosophy of Recruitment 3.0: Employment The Core Philosophy of Recruitment 3.0: Everyone brand is pivotal to your success in talent acquisition is a potential candidate or brand ambassador. Even Before defining an employer value proposition, or employ- your consumers ment brand, it is important to understand what a brand is. Back to the core of Recruitment 3.0 is the definition of The classic definition comes from Interbrand: Brand Glos- a candidate. sary: “A brand is a mixture of attributes, tangible and in- A candidate is someone who has nominated themselves tangible, symbolized in a trademark, which if managed prop- to be part of an election process. It is a voluntary act.That’s erly, creates value and influence. Brands simplify decision- the traditional definition. making, represent an assurance of quality, and offer a rel- But at what point does someone volunteer to be a can- evant, different and credible choice among competing of- didate? ferings.” • When they see your advertisement? Put more simply, a brand is a person’s gut feel about a • When they apply to your advertisement? product, service, or organization.16 Journal of Corporate Recruiting Leadership | | June 2011 ©2011 ERE Media, Inc.
  • 6. RECRUITMENT 3.0 TIME TO CHANGE The goal of a brand is to create an emotional attachment. What Is an Employment Brand?Emotion creates a connection that bonds loyalty and trust. “How a business builds and packages its identity,An emotional relationship is one anchored by honest, two- from its origins and values, what it promises to deliver toway communication. emotionally connect employees so that they in turn deliv- Consider the following Brands: McDonald’s, Disney, Fer- er what the business promises to customers. Building therari, Starbucks, Lego, Coca-Cola, Nike, Adidas, Apple, Pixar, employment brand from inside the business, with a con-Autodesk, Google. Instantly people have a reaction to all sistent substance, voice, and authenticity, may be the mostthese brands. powerful tool a business can use to emotionally engage em- Boiled down even more simply, as product parity grows, ployees.” (Taken from the brilliant Libby Sartain’s Brandsubconscious brand selection becomes even more pivotal; from the Inside.e.g. when buying a cup of coffee, do you go to Costa Cof- Why is an employment brand needed over and above afee or Starbucks? The taste differential is minimal, so sub- product brand? What benefits does a product brand bring?conscious decisions on brand and lifestyle creep in. I pre- A world-class employment brand brings many benefits:fer the ambiance and sofas in Starbucks. Product brand is pivotal to sales success. A powerful con- • Higher-quality candidates.The best want to work at thesumer brand can provide vision and inspiration to employ- best companiesees, drive innovation and quality, guide business decisions, • Increase in unsolicited candidate applications to yourbecome something consumers love, and can multiply jobs sitesales by hundreds of millions and add billions to sharehold- • Higher offer/accept ratioser value. • Increased number of employee referrals Walk around a supermarket and on average there are • Improved employee retention rates30,000 different product brands screaming at you: PICK • Increased employee motivationME UP … NOW … LOOK AT ME … BUY ME! • Decreased corporate negativity Now imagine that same supermarket and if every prod- • Stronger corporate cultureuct looked the same and were in pure white packaging, with • Increased shareholder valueno advertising.What would catch your eye? Make you stop • Competitive advantageand explore? Now look at the Fortune 500. How many com- • Enhanced college recruitingpanies have an employment brand? For how many can you • Stronger perception among high school students anddefine their employment brand proposition? The answer is future recruitsminimal. Less than 2%, I’m guessing. • Increased media exposure So if employers recognize that recruitment is so impor- • Increased manager satisfactiontant and vital to the success of their businesses’ future, why • Happier workforceare they happy that their company has no employment brand • Long-term development planning possible with stable,proposition? Why are they happy to sell their company in dynamic workforcea way that is equivalent to bland white packaging with noadvertising in a supermarket? Recruitment 1.0 vs. Recruitment 3.0 on Employment Retro-traditionalists would of course say that product Brandbrand is enough to sell a company and people will come Many Fortune 500 company recruiting leaders don’tflocking to work on the best products. Unfortunately, as re- understand employment branding. That is evident fromcruiters from some of the sexiest brands in the world will looking at their corporate careers sites, recruitment col-tell you that a product brand is not enough to attract peo- lateral, and what their recruiting leaders say at confer-ple.When you Google “working at” some of the best-known ences. Common misconceptions are highlighted in Fig-companies, due to organizational arrogance, little has ure 2 on the next page.been done to provide a great working atmosphere and ca- So if the employment brand touches everything in Re-reer prospects, and their product brand is the reverse of their cruitment 3.0, how does it affect day-to-day recruitment andemployment reality. how can perceptions be improved?©2011 ERE Media, Inc. Journal of Corporate Recruiting Leadership | | June 2011 17
  • 7. RECRUITMENT 3.0 TIME TO CHANGE Recruitment 101 Views Recruitment 3.0 Perspectives “A company creates an employment A company cannot create an employment brand. An employment brand derives from brand” the opinions of both employees and external perceptions. It is organic, changes, and is the perceived truth. A company can try to guide and affect the employment brand but it cannot create and control. “We have a great employment brand Employment branding is not about creative changes to logos, creating a vision state- look at our news logos and advertising” ment, or even advertising. Its a collective perception of what it is like to work for your company. “E-Brand is about marketing and how we An employer, PR Team, or HR leader, is not in control of what people say it is like to advertise. We control messages” work at your company. All can try to affect it. But messages have to be authentic and communities come to their own collective decisions. Reality will always over- come company spin. “HR owns the employment brand” Far from it. No one owns it. HR, PR, marketing all can help to shape messages but the employment brand is shaped by employees and external communities. To help form an EVP companies need to embrace the whole business and involve , HR, PR, Legal, Marketing, business leaders. HR/recruiting does not own or lead em- ployment brands. Figure 2 Candidate Experience and Employment Brand Are • Leave: The experience someone receives when exit- One ing a business, good or bad! Critical to employment branding and Recruitment 3.0 • Remember: After a period of time goes by after is understanding the stages of the employee/candidate ex- leaving, what sort of memories will someone be left perience lifecycle. with? There are seven distinct stages that all affect the employ- ment brand. Those stages are: Much of the following employment brand suggestions are • Notice: When someone first takes note of a company. common sense. But few companies do the below, which • Considers: When someone actively starts to consid- would go a long way toward enhancing their EVP. er whether they would like to work for that com- pany. • Apply: This is a critical stage as the candidate decides to apply. A very informative insight into a company. • Onboarding: The experience the can- didate receives when they first start at their new company. • Work: The whole experi- ence when someone works and invests a period of their life in a company.18 Journal of Corporate Recruiting Leadership | | June 2011 ©2011 ERE Media, Inc.
  • 8. RECRUITMENT 3.0 TIME TO CHANGEStage 1: Notice dia networks or emailing potential candidates adds extra val- The Notice stage is self-explanatory. It’s when someone ue to recruiting collateral and impresses potential candidates.first takes note of your company and starts to make sub-jective judgements.What is the company like? What do they Presentations and Eventsdo? Do people seem to be enjoying what they do? Do peo- Recruitment events 1.0 style were traditionally labelledple seem to think it is a good business to work for? Does “recruitment events” or “tours,” or they were stalls at ex-the business seem fair? A level of interest/intrigue is nur- hibitions, or tables at university fairs, with recruiters focusedtured, and builds in the subconscious. on mass-selling of current roles being recruited. No pinpoint From a recruiting perspective, there are many interaction targeting, just mass-spraying of leaflets and accepting pa-points that a company can have with potential candidates per CVs that were rarely put into a company database andto get them to notice them or elevate themselves onto peo- hence never replied to. It was the ultimate in goodwill byples agendas. holding an event or having a booth at a fair, but savagely The goal for a business is getting a message out to a wider, destroyed positive employment brand experience, with can-uneducated audience, to start to stimulate their mindset into didates passing over their personal details or registering theiryour company and set them on the road to either applying interest only to never hear from that company again.Trag-or being a brand ambassador. ic, but oh so common. How can a company elevate itself on an agenda? Recruitment events don’t work for mid-level to senior tal- ent. Experienced talent does not take the risk of being caughtExternal PR attending such events or speaking to recruiters at fairs. Most- Recruiters traditionally shy away from PR or are held away ly junior talent visits recruitment events or fairs. And thisat arm’s length, as PR is the responsibility of the corporate sporadic talent often gets a bad experience.They leave a re-PR team or corporate marketing. But corporate PR and mar- sume and enthusiastically walk away and never hear again,keting are, quite naturally, focused on product PR and not as the company has a structured and targeted university re-on humanizing a company or describing what happens be- lations strategy, partnering with the top 10 universities.tween the four walls of your company and making it appeal Recruiter 3.0 sees events differently. Events are a way toas a great place to work. spread messages, to engage with people, to enhance employ- Recruitment has a critical role in driving PR and mar- ment brand perception. What’s the goal of attendingketing in looking at the bigger, holistic picture. PR is a mass events or fairs? Name generation? Building a database?communication tool reaching large audiences.The question Reaching out to talent? Why not hold an event at a majoris why aren’t more recruiters, especially recruiting leaders, conference or exhibition, organize a keynote speaker fromusing PR to elevate their employment brand and their com- your business on a topic of huge interest that will cause peo-pany as a thought leader? ple to want to attend? Such a presentation is not labelled Why aren’t recruiters giving interviews on the current state as a recruitment event, so competitors will be happy to at-of the talent pool, on what makes their company an excit- tend and allow their staff to attend as well. Managers froming place to work, and exciting developments inside the com- your competitors won’t curtail their staff from attending,pany? There are many publications both online and in tra- as they will see no threat.ditional print where recruiters can write thought leadership For those who want to attend, set up a pre-registrationarticles. Mixing product PR, company strategy, and human- site on the web that captures all the details that recruitersizing a company are powerful messages that journalists love want to capture: Name, company, job title, contact details.for their copy. Does your recruiting leader speak to the me- Job done. Before the event has even taken place, recruitersdia? Are they promoting your brand? Google their name, have a database. At the event, no recruiting activity takesand if they have little that comes up, ask yourself if they are place, but the whole event is a subconscious reinforcementa true champion and face of your company. of what makes your company cool. Your keynote speaker Any articles and resultant PR not only provide access to gives an insightful presentation and then people socialize,wider readerships and stimulates the Notice stage, but cap- meet key staff, and drink. After the event, you have a data-turing them as a PDF/document and posting to social me- base and relationships to follow up on.©2011 ERE Media, Inc. Journal of Corporate Recruiting Leadership | | June 2011 19
  • 9. RECRUITMENT 3.0 TIME TO CHANGE As the event contains a keynote speaker, it also presents panies not put any effort into their jobs site and leave it por- other opportunities. As it is a presentation on a topic of in- traying boring, scripted, corporate spin messages that would terest, invite the media. PR then follows which the recruit- be better used by a parent reading their kid to sleep? If you ment team can post to social media networks and also be are just lucky enough to have been chosen to go on a date, sent to aspiring new candidates. Record the event. Post to why mess it up by going out without taking a bath, smelling YouTube.Take a Flip and interview people and post to your like a banshee, having messy hair, ripped jeans, dirty sneak- social media sites. Take photos. Reinforce the “cool” and ers with holes in them, and a T-shirt of a pop concert that that your company is a “thought leader.” was cool 20 years ago? For university fairs or jobs booths, if you have to do them, Hand in hand with the corporate careers site in the No- the key is to remember that traffic is random and based on tice stage is job descriptions. It’s perhaps the least appre- appeal of your company. Ensure that your swag and give- ciated element of employment branding. Job descriptions aways are cool, but even if you have minimal budget, you are in effect marketing documents, but hiring managers and can make your booth stand out. Maybe you have a karaoke recruiters invest minimal amounts of time into them. Of- competition? Raffle give-aways? Play video games? Maybe ten job descriptions are badly written and essentially bland, have musical instruments and allow people to jam? Booths as a spec is split between listing job responsibilities and then are about appeal and leaving that subconscious message that required experience, which nearly every spec includes: Must you are a great company, have a great strategy, the culture demonstrate leadership skills; be a team player; be able to screams fun, Fun, FUN… use Microsoft Office, have managed budgets, etc. A job de- scription would better be used to sell the company and the Stage 2: Considers role, even if that means less information on a role. A job Recruitment advertising can fit naturally in either box: description must capture the actual role (and inspire the “notice” or “considers.” job seeker), many of which don’t, leaving job seekers dis- Recruitment 1.0 advertising is plain, simple, and aesthet- appointed when they come to realize this difference between ically boring, advertising in print a list of jobs, with spuri- reality and rushed craftsmanship on the part of the job de- ous job descriptions, crammed together, leaving a muddled scription author. A bad job description reflects badly on your and confused message to job seekers. Many companies trans- brand and promotes a lazy and can’t-be-bothered-to-invest- late this online, again listing jobs and descriptions, hastily in-you company appearance. thrown together, that neither sell the role or the company or catch the eye and hence sell the company. Stage 3: Applies Recruiter 3.0 adapts and uses recruitment advertising in This is a critical stage as the candidate decides to apply. a different way. In print, it cuts down on text and uses mar- They will be making judgements including: Is this compa- keting techniques to provide eye-catching imagery and sim- ny interested in me as a person? Is the application process ple message-led advertising. For example, pictures of efficient and well-structured? Does this company act like products interspersed with people pictures and the simple a great place to work? Does this company’s collateral and headline: “A great place to work … and play,” with a link experience feel consistent with its external perception and to the job site. Just as a tabloid newspaper catches the eye PR messaging? Is the interview informative and challeng- with a big headline and huge picture, why not recruitment ing? Does the candidate feel the interview is thorough? Do advertising? Advertising is a vehicle for messaging. the company values feel aligned with mine? Does the can- Also in the Consider stage is social media. This is criti- didate feel the decision process is fair; if the candidate is cal to the whole Consider piece, and a section is devoted rejected, is it done so respectfully? later in this article to social media and building an engaged The application process can be split into three distinct community/ies. phases. In the Consider stage, a candidate will visit and start to get a feel for your company via your corporate careers job • Pre-interview site.This site is key in framing the whole perception of your • Interview company as a great place to work. But why do so few com- • Post-interview20 Journal of Corporate Recruiting Leadership | | June 2011 ©2011 ERE Media, Inc.
  • 10. RECRUITMENT 3.0 TIME TO CHANGEPre-Interview • What’s the interview room like? Does it convey excite- How candidates interact with your company in the pre- ment or is it a blank room?interview stage is critical and leaves lasting, embedded mem- • How competent is the interviewer?ories. Whether contact is via email or phone, the process • When interacting with the hiring team, do they feel likeneeds to be as personal and humanized as possible. Person- the sort of people who the candidate wants to workalized communication takes more time but the key bene- with?fit is that candidates are made to feel more unique, special, • Is the interview process laborious with too many peo-and desired. ple in the process? The goal of any company must be to leave candidates pos- • Do interviews repeat the same old questions?itively gushing at the thought of working with your compa- • How much time is left for questions? Does the com-ny. They are hungry to join. Inspired to tell their friends. pany come across as credible?Dating, seduction, and recruitment have much in common. • Does the interview team give credible insight into the The better the pre-interview process, the easier the of- rest of the process?fer decision process. More goodwill is stored up, especial- • Is there any takeaway recruitment collateral?ly if a candidate has multiple offers to consider. How many companies bother to create Key for employment branding, even if theand send out interview packets? Many candidates aren’t very good, is that theyrely on candidates doing their own research must be made to feel special throughout theor looking at information on the corporate interview process and remain desperate tocareers site. Content is king. The goal of Everyone is a candidate. work for your company.The goal is to en-an interview packet is to not only provide Recruiters create sure every candidate has an excellent expe-information but build the brand, build ex- candidates. rience so they may be brand ambassadorscitement. It should also define the inter- for your company.They will always speakview process. Candidates must demon- positively to their friends and when theystrate they have taken time out to read the comment in their social communities.packet if they are hungry to impress.This also raises the qual-ity of any discussion at interview. Their questions will be Post Interviewmore targeted and deeper. If they have not taken the time After the interview the candidate will be judging your com-to read, that speaks volumes for their level of passion and pany on the timeliness of your feedback, its quality, and howdesire for your company. caring you are if you are rejecting them. How many companies look at their reception areas as re- Both rejecting and offering provides solid bonding expe-cruitment buttons? Many visitors pass through a reception. rience.Are they candidates in waiting? Are they brand ambassa- If the candidate just misses out on a job offer, keep thatdors? Why do reception areas rarely contain recruitment lit- candidate engaged. Maybe they add valued experience anderature or reflect the brand of the company they represent? join your company down the line. Maybe another job comes up that they are relevant for. Keeping in touch bonds loy-Interview Process alty. Whether personalized through regular phone calls or The interview process shapes opinions and perceptions keeping up to date with candidate news via email, the can-of a company in a candidate’s eyes: didate will feel part of an extended family. If the candidate is offered a job, too few companies cel-• Is the recruiter on time and picks them up from recep- ebrate the job offer. Whether sending celebratory swag, tion quickly? bringing the candidate in for a team lunch/evening dinner,• How does the recruiter break the ice? taking the husband/wife/kids on a tour of the facility, reg-• Are they engaging? ular update calls, and emails from the team, all reinforce• Are they interested in the candidate? the decision to accept. Some candidates on three-month no-• Do they provide the candidate with refreshments? tice periods are often left with zero contact in those three©2011 ERE Media, Inc. Journal of Corporate Recruiting Leadership | | June 2011 21
  • 11. RECRUITMENT 3.0 TIME TO CHANGE months. In that time a candidate can again become shaky business leaders and HR to provide the tools and frame- and prone to counteroffers. Learning how to celebrate some- work for success. one accepting a job offer goes a long way in cementing re- Again, key employment brand influencers are at work: lationships and long-term goodwill. Lastly, reinforce the image that your company cares with • What performance management systems are in a candidate experience survey. It shows to a candidate place and how successful are they in motivating and in- you are hungry for their feedback, pass feedback to hiring spiring the workforce? managers, and hence improve. It’s a simple but motivation- • Does the company invest and reward those who are risk al message to candidates, and of course useful for individ- takers and innovators? ual recruiters to add into their metric assessments for the • Does the company focus on pay for performance? year when it comes to appraisals. The best recruiters will • Can the company identify top performers and re- relish feedback and come to the top of any experience sur- ward them? veys. There is no better way to inspire and provide on- • Conversely, does the company know its poor perform- going feedback to a recruiter than running in tandem ers and can it either improve their output or remove regular hiring manager satisfaction surveys and them from the business? candidate experience surveys. • How organized is the company in providing learning and development/training? Stage 4: Onboarding • How open is the leadership in communicating One of the scariest things for a new employee is the on- company strategy? boarding experience. Naturally they get the jitters in their • Is communication two-way and is feedback encour- first few days, and question whether their decision to join aged? is wise.The starting experience never fades away through- • Does the company grow and grow new leaders? out the lifetime of that employee in your company. • How detailed is succession planning? The new employee is passing judgement from the first minute they walk into your offices on: Once onboard a recruiter still has a part to play with the new employee.That bond that was developed through the • Are people ready for me? hiring process is not easily broken. A bond of trust exists. • Do I have a desk? In many ways, the open relationship almost should mean • Is my computer set up? the recruiter is an early warning radar system if a new hire • Is my mobile phone activated? is having doubts or deciding to move on.This is a bond or • Is my paperwork handled efficiently? relationship that often HR does not have or can nurture that • Are my essential questions answered effectively? only a recruiter has developed. • Do I feel part of the culture or an outsider? While much of the work experience is outside of the hands • Is my experience consistent with the brand of the busi- of recruiters, there are other key interaction points. If there ness? has been a positive experience to this point, the new em- • Can I see myself here for a period of time? ployee will want to encourage their friends and their for- • Do I have clear objectives for the next 30, 60, and 90 mer colleagues to join your company. days? The importance of referrals is well documented. If a com- pany has a strong employment brand and is effective at mar- Again, that new employee will be telling friends and for- keting and selling internal referrals, then an effective mer colleagues and will reinforce or destroy the decision to benchmark rate of 40% of new hires should come through join and either add or detract from employment brand rep- quality referrals from employees. utations. Referrals rates are a key indication of the strength of an employment brand. If people love your company, they will Stage 5: Work enthuse and inspire ex-colleagues and friends and attract Much of the work experience relies on the skills of the them to your company. If your company is a pig of an em-22 Journal of Corporate Recruiting Leadership | | June 2011 ©2011 ERE Media, Inc.
  • 12. RECRUITMENT 3.0 TIME TO CHANGEployer, it would be no surprise that the employee is ing. At one point, those who left were employed by yourashamed to refer people and a rate of 10% and less could company. Over time they will remember the good times, andbe the norm. this could transform into nostalgic fondness. Recruitment marketing is a key driver in employee re- Hence employment brands can wrap itself round alumniferrals programs, be it posters, email, or creation of in- programs, keeping in touch with past employees. It can be doneternal intranet sites.When creating campaigns, many com- through a LinkedIn alumni group. Or, through regular emails.panies focus on monetary rewards as the key driver of an Or, special recognition/seating at future events. Or, targetedemployee wanting to refer people in. Interestingly, as re- catch-up calls by friends. Even special alumni events.ferral monetary reward rates increase, the number of can- Keeping in touch may lead to a re-hire. Alumni commu-didates being referred does not increase proportionally. nities are often a hidden gem in recruiting.Money is not the key driver. Creating a sense of fun or All of these seven stages are critical in forging employ-competition or adding a degree of status is what creates ment brand perceptions. But moving back to the core philis-that additional driving force. Publishing company-wide ophy of Recruitment 3.0, understanding people is key.league tables of either individuals making hires, orgrouping into geographical regions, creates fun and a sense The Core Philosophy of Recruitment 3.0:The Psychol-of “beating others.” ogy of People The last notable point in this part of the candidate ex- People are naturally social people.perience is internal marketing and internal communications. They like to engage.While internal communications is an article topic in its own They are hungry for information. They are passionateright, recruiters have to also be at the forefront of about learning and themselves internally.This is not only no- When forming a relationship, they want honesty, authen-tifying fellow employees about open headcount but extra ticity, integrity, transparency, and communication. Two-wayactivities the recruiting team are initiating, be it universi- communication.ty relations, PR, events, or social media. How many com- Any good salesperson knows this. People buy from peo-panies see their recruitment teams regularly communicat- ple. A relationship, however superficial, drives sales via company-wide emails or intranet sites, apart from When looking at employment branding, people want re-advertising referrals programs? If the recruiting profession lationships with people, not faceless companies.This is thewants to demonstrate its skills and competence, it has to key mistake among many in the Fortune 500.prove its merits and demonstrate to internal employees it The key is allowing people to have transparent, trustwor-is not all about “bums on seats.” thy, two-way communication with your company. People love a good story. Shows like X Factor and Amer-Stage 6: Leaves ican Idol get this. If these shows were pure singing compe- How a candidate departs a business is equally key, whether titions they would not be so successful. Instead, these showsit is a resignation, termination, or a retirement. tell a story, and draw us into the world of the competitor. If someone resigns, a positive experience reinforces the com- We learn they had a difficult life. They have lost their par-pany brand. Even for those terminated, keeping matters civ- ents tragically, just recovered from life-threatening cancer,il dilutes the potential “hatred” from the dismissed employ- their children are bullied at school, they lost their job, andee. Remember that the terminated employee has the poten- had to sweep the roads to pay for their mortgage. As com-tial to be that fierce anonymous blog critic, constantly acting passionate viewers we immerse ourselves into their worldas a sniper from the sidelines; hence civil terminations help and even if they can’t sing, we feel we know that person anddissipate any sense of misplaced anger or revenge. more importantly for the show, we pick up the phone to vote The goal is for anyone leaving is to feel positive about the for a complete stranger, (perhaps multiple times).company, or at the very least neutral. Simon Cowell gets it. And is in many ways the best re- cruiter in the world today. He has a clear application process,Stage 7: Remembers a detailed and through interview process, open assessments, The final stage of the candidate experience is remember- allows for clear feedback, and final selection is understood©2011 ERE Media, Inc. Journal of Corporate Recruiting Leadership | | June 2011 23
  • 13. RECRUITMENT 3.0 TIME TO CHANGE by all and brings highly qualified top candidates bought into munity will be the winners of Recruitment 3.0. But how do by a large part of the business (viewers). companies listen and seek opinions? The Core Philosophy of Recruitment 3.0:You are not The Core Philosophy of Recruitment 3.0: Building re- in control of what people are saying lationships and communities is key Everyone’s talking. The growth of the Internet is unstoppable. Whether you like it or not they are talking about your com- We are all aware of the explosion of the number of com- pany. munication channels, be it: Google “Working for *******” (Insert company name). Already you will see a host of top stories on Google’s Facebook: (source) search engines. On the left-hand side margin, click on • 500 million+ active global users “more,” and you can see what people are saying real time, • Search engines refer 7% of traffic to Facebook as well as comments on blogs, and on social media. No one • 20 million Facebook users become fans of Facebook can escape. Log into and absorb further pages every day views on your company as a place to work. • More than 35 million Facebook users update their sta- People love to talk and gossip. People tell friends.The dif- tus each day. ference is that in 2011, they tell their friends via larger com- munication channels and word of mouth spreads like wild- LinkedIn (source) fire. • LinkedIn has more than 101 million members world- This is pretty scary, especially for modern business. Busi- wide. (41.1% female, 58.9% male) ness can no longer control what is said. Before all this, cor- • 18–24 year olds: 20.9%; 25-34: 35.8%; 35-54: 36.3%; porate PR put out highly crafted press releases, which were 55+: 6.9% (source) then reproduced into print media. Corporate marketing de- • There are now 23.1 million LinkedIn users across Eu- signing great ads or 30- second TV spots that the world could digest. But due to limited word of mouth and public scruti- ny, companies were in total control. Today there is a shift in the balance of power. Technology is shifting the balance of power away from the editors, the publishers, the es- tablishment, and the media elite. It’s the peo- ple who are in control, Rupert Murdoch, mul- timedia guru, insight- fully suggests. Those companies that listen, are humble, and seek to solicit the opinions of their com-24 Journal of Corporate Recruiting Leadership | | June 2011 ©2011 ERE Media, Inc.
  • 14. RECRUITMENT 3.0 TIME TO CHANGE rope. (North America represents 47.2% of member- by marketers ship, Europe 22.8%, Asia 13.6% • 56% say their blog has helped their company establish• In terms of worldwide distribution by industry the a positioning as a thought leader within their industry biggest are: High-tech 16%, Finance 13.3%, Manufac- • More than 133,000,000 blogs have been indexed by turing 9.5%, Medical 8.5%, Corporate 8.3%, Recre- Technorati since 2002. ational 5.4%, Construction 4.4%• Worldwide distribution by job function.The biggest are: We also know that social media communication is pre- Sales 12%, Admin 10.4%, Academic 10.3%, Opera- dicted to exceed email usage by 2014 (see chart below). tions 9.7%, Engineering 8.6%, Information Technol- Those companies that choose to ignore or under-use so- ogy 8.3%, Consultant 5.4, Finance 5.3%, Support 5%, cial media are playing a dangerous game with the future suc- Marketing 4.3%, PR 4.3% cess of their hiring teams and their employment brands.• India is currently the fastest-growing country to use LinkedIn, with around 9.1 million total users. Social Media Recruitment 1.0 Style The drive toward having a social media recruiting pres-YouTube ence is unstoppable. But only a handful of companies• People watch 2 billion videos on the Internet daily are doing it right.• Every minute, 24 hours of video is uploaded to Most companies, beating their chests like Tarzan and pro- YouTube. claiming how proud they are to have a social media pres- ence, rush to market proclaiming their mastery of social me-Twitter dia and the fact they have their own Twitter/Facebook page.• Twitter now has 280,000,000+ users But here we are back to Recruitment 1.0 as companies• The current rate of Tweeting is 1,200 tweets per create a Facebook and Twitter page. They add a sexy logo second, but those increase during important events with background graphics.Then they post a list of all cur- such as the Superbowl with 4,064 tweets per second rent job vacancies with a hyperlink back to their corporate• About 110 million Tweets per day• 460,000 new users signing up every day• 29% of Twitter users 18-24 use Twitter to follow their favorite com- panies• 53% of people on Twitter recom- mend companies and/products in their Tweets.Blogs• 77% of Internet users read blogs• Blogs are among the top four social media tools used©2011 ERE Media, Inc. Journal of Corporate Recruiting Leadership | | June 2011 25
  • 15. RECRUITMENT 3.0 TIME TO CHANGE careers page. And then again, rock back in the chair and wait But ask yourself how many recruitment job sites or re- for the resumes to flood in. cruitment social media pages you visit when you are not Feeling confident that Twitter and Facebook mastery is looking for a job. When people are looking for a job, they in place, a YouTube Channel is created, with the first video will engage and look at job boards and corporate careers being a slickly produced corporate video of the CEO talk- sites, but once happy in their job, they have no reason to ing straight to camera, (looking like a petrified bunny caught come back. between the headlights of a rapidly approaching juggernaut). Why would someone who is not looking for a job: With the killer employment brand strategy in place, the company now rushes out to speak at conferences and ap- • Visit on a daily basis a list of jobs on Twitter? ply for awards. (Stop laughing, it’s happening!) • Visit a list of jobs and employment statement on Face- But social media strategy requires some more direct ques- book? tions being answered: • Visit a corporate careers site? • Visit the Monster job board, or the Total job board, or • What’s the purpose of our social media sites? any job boards? • Who is the core target audience? • What experience and takeaways do we want our com- Not many people, unless they lead totally dull lives! So munity to have? why are so many companies acting in a • Will these sites generate repeat visi- Recruitment 1.0 fashion? They need to tors? build an engaged community. • How are our sites sticky so that peo- If your staff are not being ple want to stay on them? targeted by competitors What Is a Community? • What’s the difference between social and headhunted, that A community encompasses a range of media and our jobs board? speaks volumes about individuals, united by one common pur- • How does our social media strategy the quality of your pose. They participate in reviewing and build relationships with talent/people? workforce and that is a engaging in discussion in like-minded • What’s the word of mouth likely to be groups. Many in the community will not humiliating issue for your on our social media? have considered working for a company, business. or even wish to in the future. But key is Many current companies are making ba- that they will start on a journey of famil- sic, yet fundamental mistakes in social me- iarization with a company, and a compa- dia. ny’s goal is that they either become a brand ambassador (be Companies publishing a list of jobs on their Twitter/Face- positive about the brand, join in discussions and share with book account, with a hyperlink back to their jobs commu- friends), or physically consider and apply for a role (or en- nity: why? What’s the point? How does that engage people? courage their friends to).These communities benefit both Why would people repeat visit that site? What’s the differ- the company employment brand and the wider corporate ence between their jobs site and a list of jobs on a brand and product familiarization. It should not be lost that Twitter/Facebook page? these communities want to be “entertained” whether that The key to social media lays in the title: social! be through information, discussion, debate, or seeing Social media is not about immediate bums-on-seats hiring! what their friends are up to! Social media is about building a community/ies of evan- gelists and potential hires. Engaged Communities An engaged community is one that demonstrates a high The Core Philosophy of Recruitment 3.0: recruitment degree of participation. That could be through reading a is boring company’s community information, (page impressions), par- That may seem like a scurrilous statement for a recruiter ticipating in discussions, (writing comments on blogs/Face- to make about their profession. But it is true. book), or sharing links with friends and colleagues. Word26 Journal of Corporate Recruiting Leadership | | June 2011 ©2011 ERE Media, Inc.
  • 16. RECRUITMENT 3.0 TIME TO CHANGEof mouth spreads like wildfire across social communi- ny based on product information. They need to answer inties. their own minds: Building a community implies developing a relationshipwith people.That means people care: they decide to devote • Is this a company that I could work for?time to look at latest posts and see what their “friends” are • What is the culture like?doing.When people care, they invest an emotional commit- • Would I feel at home with the people? Would I likement to something. them? That is the goal of any community should it either wish • Who are the key leaders? Are they leaders in their fieldto create brand ambassadors or physical job applicants. and will they drive a company forward? Recruitment 3.0’s goal must be to nurture an emotion, • What is the experience of the leaders? How they get toensure people take an interest, and want to share/have an their position?opinion. • What are the key challenges facing the company, and how is it overcoming them?How Can Recruiting Create Engaged Communities? • What are the different locations? How do they differ? Again, recruitment is fundamentally boring. People • What facilities does the company have?tend to only visit jobs sites when they are looking for a job. • What college courses does the company recommend?Generally there is no hook’ or engagement tool in place to • Are there any special opportunities for training and de-encourage any repeat visitors. velopment? Recruitment-focused content will not create an engaged • What promotion possibilities are there?community, not generate repeat visits, or seek to human- • How do teams gel? What do people do to have fun?ize the brand. • Is the company involved in community relations, and A different angle is needed in order to hook people in. what sort of activities? • Insights into people and culture.Why the Need to Humanize the Brand? • Compensation and benefits: what’s included. Corporate PR and marketing is naturally focused on pro-motion of the product to increase sales/market penetration. These insights can take many forms but are clearly dif-There is generally less attention directly focused on com- ferent than the goals of product pr/marketing.pany and people promotion or revealing behind the corpo- Revealing the true side of a business greatly enhances therate iron curtain. But it is not the prime driver for corpo- offering to candidates and new candidate pools as they getrate PR and marketing to humanize.Their driver must right- to see a more human be raising product and company awareness to increase Legitimately, internal discussion will focus on what thesales and market penetration.This means a focus on con- benefits of humanizing the brand are.trolling the message to ensure strict adherence to a The key is that whoever attracts the best talent getsbrand/core message. Anything that encourages feedback can the best business results.distort the message and move away from the core propo- If a company does not as yet possess a killer employmentsition, and is tougher to control. brand, the goal must be to map out key talent pools and But controlling a message or perception is tough in an proactively attract the best talent. Sourcing can help iden-interconnected world, as everyone is discussing brands, prod- tify top talent but cannot spread the positive subconsciousucts on Twitter, blogs, community forums. Controlled messaging throughout talent pools. Recruiters need to havemessaging is almost impossible.The question is whether every weapon at their disposal to tempt and seduce talent.modern corporations are happier to have people comment-ing on their company and products on their official sites or Three Core Elements on 3.0 Social Media Siteselsewhere, where they have zero control or influence. Recognizing that pure recruitment messaging is boring While corporate PR and marketing focus on product mes- and our goal is engagement, any elements of social mediasaging, there is a potential gap in understanding a compa- communication must encompass and balance three core ar-ny. People cannot take a decision on working at a compa- eas:©2011 ERE Media, Inc. Journal of Corporate Recruiting Leadership | | June 2011 27
  • 17. RECRUITMENT 3.0 TIME TO CHANGE 1. People: The aim is to humanize the brand, show the What’s cool as well is that this differentiates us from pure culture, remove the corporate iron curtains, show who product PR and corporate marketing, plus it allows people the people are, what they do, what experience they to feedback. have, what they do in their spare time, what challenges they face, what they studied at the university, and so “It Is Too Dangerous for People to Have Opinions!” on. The biggest fear of social media is that people have opin- 2. Opportunities: This is the subconscious push toward ions and could disagree and slam a company. Bad feedback jobs, but in an interesting way. It answers all those great is not what anyone wants to see. questions: how do I progress in my career, what pro- But if people feel passionate to post bad feedback on a motion prospects are like, whether a company has ca- site they will do it anywhere. It could be it on a news site reer structures, have they mapped job families, what or a blog and they will still tell their friends. No company training and development they offer, can control that. and more. It’s better that any negative feedback is 3. Product: We cannot get away from posted on official sites. products, as we need to get people ex- The pressure for any company is to cited about what we do. But we have Is there a need for in- want to delete negative feedback or have to be short, sharp, simple, and fun in house recruitment a member of HR/marketing/PR reply in our communications. teams? Why cant a a professional way. But if a company is hiring manager speak to misleading through messaging and infor- Product is the most controversial ele- mation, this will be recognized by the com- recruitment agencies ment here as there is crossover amongst munity, and whatever degree of messag- direct or post to a job the PR and corporate marketing teams. ing won’t work. If someone says something The goal is any product material used board or even reach out critical in the community and it is with- across social media must be taken from of- to candidates direct via out basis or untrue, then the community ficial press releases. At Autodesk, for ex- LinkedIn themselves? will spring to the defense of a company ample, we also have to ensure that we en- (much to the proud delight of HR/mar- gage people’s subconscious into what keting/PR). If something being done by our software can create: the company is wrong, it gains consider- able kudos amongst communities to – On Facebook a link to a cool trailer that Autodesk Soft- demonstrate that a company listens and proposes correc- ware created the visual effects for, with a caption like, tive action, as in, “We were wrong, we have been listening to your views and will be doing x/y/z to improve this situ- Have you seen Inception? Love what the guys at Double Neg- ation.” People respect companies that listen and apologize. ative have achieved with Autodesk Maya. What’s your favorite scene in the film? Key Channels to Talent Social media is rapidly becoming the communication This can be posted on D-Neg’s site for cross-communi- channel of choice for millions of people. By 2014 social me- ty building. dia messaging will exceed email. A photo of someone standing by the Bay Bridge with a Social media is also bridging generational divides. It is no caption, longer the preserve of Generation Y and younger genera- tion. Social media is proving a cross-generational commu- Gotta love this photo of John by the Bay bridge. We were so nication vehicle. happy that Autodesk’s software was used to create the new bridge. The key is not to dilute strategy and to only focus on Would you guys have designed the bridge differently? building communities where it makes sense. There are so many social networks and media outlets that it is impossi- Note the use of open questions to stimulate debate. ble to cover a large number without diluting effort.28 Journal of Corporate Recruiting Leadership | | June 2011 ©2011 ERE Media, Inc.
  • 18. RECRUITMENT 3.0 TIME TO CHANGE Therefore focusing on a key strategic number will reap 6,000-plus employees, we will get enough content forrewards for an employment brand: one photo per day for 365 days. • Community relations and charity work. People do this• A company blog site for Autodesk and in their own time. Great subtle PR• LinkedIn community coverage for a company that cares.• Facebook page • Videos about products, training, recruitment, the• YouTube Channel whole mix.• Twitter community • Staff profiles and exclusive interviews with the CEO, chief of creative, marketing managers, receptionists, The key to all social media is content. CONTENT IS cleaners, etc. (PR lets key media know and points themKING. to the site). This drives PR and traffic, particularly to the exclusive interview with the CEO.Examples of Content • Competitions among the development community. Content is so diverse. But it must be short and sharp.A general rule is one short paragraph and 1-2-3 pictures. This only scratches the surface.That is what grabs. It also means multiple people across theworld can generate and post content without an impact on Who Writes Contenttheir day jobs. A company does not need to hire full-time employees fo- For example, a member of the staff takes a picture of the cused on keeping social media up to date. Instead, what isfood from the cafeteria that day. BANG.There’s a story that needed is a network of contacts across the world. (Numer-reveals a little of the brand. It says they have great food at ous people responsible for content on Facebook, such asa company. A member of the staff takes a picture of the out- someone in Asia, Europe, and North America who occa-side view of the offices in India. BANG, it’s a story. It em- sionally go on and review postings and post comments, andphasizes the global nature of the company. they assume the one identity be it a single Avatar or the com- What else we will focus on at Autodesk: pany name). The key is a photo plus one paragraph of short text. It’s• Photos from inside offices/locations across the world easy and not time-consuming. with intro into the offices. As communities grow, content can be posted by commu-• Employee profiles (Photo plus answers to 4-5 questions). nity members and becomes a self-evolving beast.• Photos and write-ups of a cool event/parties at locations; Summer Party, Xmas, Halloween, office party, bring Recruitment 3.0 Corporate Careers Site kids to work, etc. Key to the whole humanized approach is the corporate• Products — taken from product press releases. careers site. Many sites are pure job boards and have zero• Sharing of relevant “Wow” articles in the media, with engagement and repeat visit sites. A corporate careers site a hyperlink to content. (We note all the great stories on is a marketing page and is there to sell your company and sites that cover Autodesk designs, such as a link to a re- promote your EVP. view of the latest film like Inception and a reminder of As the area you drive most traffic to, you need to be hon- the fact Autodesk designed software used. A discussion est and ask if this site captures your EVP. Does it excite? takes place about what people think of the effects and Does it inspire? Is it sticky for people to spend some time the story of the film itself. to exploring?• University presentations—a great area for content. Both A modern corporate careers site is your shop window to video from the presentation, interviews with grads on your world. Just as you walk past a shop in the local town, Flip video, and photos from the presentation. do you stop, look, and want to explore content?• Photos from the launch of “My Autodesk.” Global Au- At minimum a corporate careers site should host your blog todesk competition for employees to take a photo to site and contain links and feeds from all your social media capture what Autodesk means to them. Given the communities.The blog site creates that re-visit factor, as it©2011 ERE Media, Inc. Journal of Corporate Recruiting Leadership | | June 2011 29
  • 19. RECRUITMENT 3.0 TIME TO CHANGE is an engagement tool. On your careers site it also provides • A full story to Facebook (includes images and full text), that extra insight for new candidates wanting to gain greater where the whole Facebook community can comment insight into your company.What better advertisement than • Short tweet of the headline plus short URL to the blog a job seeker coming to the corporate careers site and see- article ing such an open company, listening and speaking with its own community? The great thing about modern blogging is that a great blog site can be created on minimal/zero budgets. Blogging The Channels … technology through packages like Wordpress and Blogger is free to use and a community of software developers helps Recruitment 3.0 Company Blog create content. A blog, (ideally hosted within the corporate careers site From experience,Wordpress is the stronger blogging soft- with its own direct unique URL), should act as the anchor ware. The Wordpress is the developer community contin- piece of social media, the mother ship, but directs people ually writing plugins and updating software AT NO COST out and back from the other social media channels. TO THE END USER. By having the blog situated in the same area as the careers site, repeat visit content drives continual traffic.The separate Recruitment 3.0 Facebook Community naming convention allows us to drive traffic without being over- Facebook is a social network and is most successfully used ly obvious that it is for recruiting purposes. in a light-hearted way. Posting a list of jobs will not engage A company blog should contain: a community or derive brand loyalty. Discussions need to be light and hence encourage participation. A balance be- • Regular short insightful content tween content and “slipping in” job postings is key. • Community can comment on content. But they will The key to Facebook is subconscious brand recognition. have to register their identity and email address, When building the InsideEA community, open-ended (hence allowing data capture) questions and feedback helped grow the community to over • Ratings: Community can rate articles on a scale of 1-5 150,000 in just over a year. • Links to all social communities People are social beasts and love to talk. • RSS feeds from corporate Even more interesting is what discussions people engage • RSS feeds from corporate Twitter site in. In EA’s example this was bizarrely not games but the fol- • Contact form allowing people to contact directly lowing Facebook updates drew response rates of over 300 • Newsletter, (powered by Feedburner) — a daily comments deep: email newsletter for those who subscribe.This is gen- erated by automation and sent at a specific time each • What are you doing this weekend? day, with no input needed by the host. (Again captur- • What’s the weather like where you are? ing data including email address) • Where in the world are you? • Categories: Such as by product or locations. It • What are you doing right now? should be easy for community members to search top- • What’s on the TV tonight? ics/stories • What’s your favorite music? • Tags: a section where community members can see the • Any good films at the cinema right now? most discussed subjects • Tabs: Separate sections inside the blog on company, Rightfully, the question will be asked internally: how does culture, and why work at your company this benefit our company? But PR and marketing should • Company video content: Derived from the YouTube quickly be encouraged that people are on the company site Channel talking, their friends joining them and engaging, and it is all great brand recognition. The blog is linked to all social media and ideally on pub- Content can be mixed with careers messaging and lishing of a story, pushes out: posts like:30 Journal of Corporate Recruiting Leadership | | June 2011 ©2011 ERE Media, Inc.
  • 20. RECRUITMENT 3.0 TIME TO CHANGE• Have you ever considered working for Autodesk? Recruitment 3.0 Twitter Community• What sort of jobs could you do at Autodesk? Twitter does not offer short-term candidate pipeline/bums• We are looking for a great salesman in Austria. Any rec- on seats. However, it is the fastest-growing of the social me- ommendations? dia communication and is an engagement tool beyond• Register for a job alert to ensure you never miss out on compare. a dream job. Communication is crisp and short, and frequent. Due to frequency playing a part, that means that a range The key is a balance. of people across the globe would assume the avatar iden- Building a vibrant community is not random but is tar- tity of your company’s tweeter. This ensures that it is notgeted to key names and groups of people and encouraging a full-time job for someone. They take a look every 2-3them to join. hours, reply, and rest assured someone else takes over in a few hours.How to Build the 3.0 Blog and Face- Put crudely, Twitter can be moni-book Community tored by someone as they make a cup Building a community of strong num- of tea and the kettle boils. It doesn’tbers is key. How can this be achieved? impacting too much on their day 90% of candidates Relatively easily: job, but gives them appraisal filler at relevant for a role are the end of the year!• Mass email your recruitment database not looking. So why are Successful use of Twitter as an engage- of most likely many thousands of can- companies restricting ment tool is ensuring that one-way “push didates. (These are people who al- themselves to fighting to messaging” is not the norm. Do not list ready like your company, as they ap- attract the small talent jobs and hyperlink to your careers site. plied to work for it. The natural pre- pool of the active 10% of That is dull. Engagement means partic- sumption is since they applied to work ipating and replying to the community. job seekers? for you, they like you, and it should This does not mean that someone be easy to convert them into your so- replies to every tweet, but a healthy num- cial media communities). ber of tweets to the following communi-• Push your PR team to encourage their ty help demonstrate two-way communi- media partners and key journalists to cation and feedback. review and publish your stories, and thus drive traffic. Companies again can be very clever in building their street Key websites hopefully will publish a story on the launch cred and also building their community via close monitor- of your new strategy and sites. (Remember this all has ing and participating in latest trending #Hashtag discus- the potential to revolutionize PR, once the domain of sions or even creating their own #Hashtag debates. Remem- the single well-crafted press release. Now it’s driven by ber, solid discussions will appear on Google search engines. social media, where instant feedback and new postings can be watched and picked up by the media). Recruitment 3.0 LinkedIn Community• Advertise in Facebook and LinkedIn communities. LinkedIn is the resume/CV shop window to the world. It provides recruiters and sourcers the chance to map and Through a combination of the above, traction can locate top quickly gained, again at zero cost. But that top talent may not be aware of the company Creative companies will also be using Facebook adver- brand or ever considered working for it.tising to hit sites of potential targets. Maybe advertising The goal with LinkedIn is to develop an active commu-to competitor communities.The potential is huge, whether nity of professional followers. Membership can be controlledit is traffic generation, building communities, or even to let in only relevant professionals who can engage in morecheeky disruptive marketing against your closest intellectual discussions. Unlike Facebook and Twittercompetitor! communities, discussions on LinkedIn are deeper, more in-©2011 ERE Media, Inc. Journal of Corporate Recruiting Leadership | | June 2011 31
  • 21. RECRUITMENT 3.0 TIME TO CHANGE Recruitment 1.0 Ready-made Excuses Regarding Social Media Recruitment 1.0 excuse Answers People would say bad things about us People are already saying bad things about you, if there are bad things to write. Is it better for people to say them on your own site in one place than push underground and allow wider coverage on a brace of different sites? I dont have any budget for it It is free to set up a Facebook page. It is free to set up a Twitter page. It is free to set up a YouTube Channel. It is free to set up a LinkedIn community. It is free to set up a blog, (if hosted on your domain). Site design is free when using software like Wordpress and Blog- ger. Key is content. Budget is not a blocker. Lack of ambition is. My company blocks social media Do they not trust their employees? If employees are delivering on their objectives and love working for your company, why not let their collective enthusiasm run free and the employment brand benefit from their word of mouth through social media. If a country proclaims the bene- fits of free speech, why curtail it in the workplace, as long as people are delivering? We only have a small company, so it is You dont want to develop relationships with talent? You dont want to build an engaged, not worth the effort open, transparent employment brand and show potential candidates the benefits of work- ing at your company? Its all to scale. Bigger companies will have bigger communities; that does not mean they are better or more qualitative focused. Our brand/product line is boring, so we Why work for your company if it is so boring? One persons boring is anothers fascinating. have nothing to say! Key is content. Companies are made up of people. People have stories. People have lives. Does not matter if you are accountants or pack fish at the local market. There are stories of peoples lives to be told. And people love that. No time to do this Engaging with social media communities should be a minimal activity. We all have day jobs. Create a number of people who can blog/add Facebook comments or Tweet. A blog story is only a photo plus a paragraph of text. This is all about developing your appeal and attractiveness to entice the best talent. If you dont devote time, rest assured your competitors will. No clear metrics. Nothing is measurable. Social media is a very metrics-focused area but sometimes it is tough to track key metrics to Its all fluffy. focus on. Obviously, trackable stats like volume of traffic to sites and click-throughs demonstrates popularity/success but it goes deeper than this. Volume of CVs/resumes received demonstrates the success of engagement on talent attraction. But the branding elements can be quite fluffy and immeasurable, as is much of PR and marketing. But other stats also demonstrate success: - Number of Facebook fans - Number of average comments per thread - Facebook fan group age spread - Facebook fans per geography - Blog Google rankings - Blog site traffic - Blog site commentary - Blog—number of people registering for a candidate newsletter - Blog—number of article mentions on other influential sites - Twitter followers - Twitter re-tweets - Twitter trending topics - LinkedIn size of community - LinkedIn user-generated discussions - YouTube friends - YouTube subscribers - YouTube views per video - YouTube user ratings per video Social media is all about the young Social media is cross-generational, and older generations are the fastest growing groups on the social media networks.32 Journal of Corporate Recruiting Leadership | | June 2011 ©2011 ERE Media, Inc.
  • 22. RECRUITMENT 3.0 TIME TO CHANGEtellectual, and more profound. Discussions are the key toengagement. Again, joiningthe most popular/largestLinkedIn communities, join-ing in discussions and then di-recting people to your com-munity helps. As long as it isnot too obvious that a hijack-ing of membership is under-way!Recruitment 3.0 YouTubeCommunity The company YouTubechannel should reflect culture,products, and opportunities. Itis not a tool to post corporateoverly manufactured corpo-rate spin video. Raw footagefrom employees representingthe culture works best. A good example again,based on experience, was theInsideEA YouTube channel, (linked to the main EA Chan- Mobile Recruitment: the next big thing?nel), which was broken down into five categories of content. The average job seeker is now searching for jobs via their• Favorites: Mix of EA product video mobile and staying in touch with their Facebook, Twitter,• Career paths at EA: Video taken from training ses- and LinkedIn buddies while on the move. sions Recruitment 3.0’s goal must be to integrate all social me-• EA having fun: Fun staff-made videos, and culture dia channels and job search functionality into an app that insights is viewable on iPad, iPhone, Android, and Blackberry tech-• Hey EA that’s soooo cool: Videos that showed EA nology to capture the mobile job seeker market. on the cutting edge use of technology This allows a candidate or fan to monitor all tweets, Face-• EA Graduates: University presentations; graduate in- book updates, LinkedIn discussions, and blog stories in one terviews place, on the move. Primary to this approach is employment branding and PwC is the perfect example of YouTube success.The exec engagement with communities, with the secondary goal ofteam spent many thousands Pounds on a slick corporate PR job search. (People will search for jobs but will want to re-video, which attracted less than a thousand hits. A few mem- ply when they are back at their desk).bers of staff created a video with a Flip camera based onTony Christie’s ‘Road to Amarillo,” which was raw, fun, and The Most Underused Aspect of Recruitingportrayed a fun side to working in auditing (a deathly dull One of the most underused and oft-forgotten assets of aprofession). The video achieved 102,000 hits. recruiter is the database. Videos on YouTube don’t need to be slick or corpo- The recruitment database is not just a tool to search andrate. One person, one Flip video can make a great review candidate details. It is a marketing tool. If the data-video and give great insight. base is easily segmented, recruiters can send precise, appeal-©2011 ERE Media, Inc. Journal of Corporate Recruiting Leadership | | June 2011 33
  • 23. RECRUITMENT 3.0 TIME TO CHANGE ing targeted emails; hence the move by many companies The New Recruitment 3.0 from pure ATS to more CRM-focused systems. Recruitment 3.0 is about building engaged communities, telling a story, listening, discussing, and fostering an emo- A Last Revolutionary Thought tional attachment with new talent. Revolutionary Thought: Is recruitment always destined Recruiter 1.0 and 2.0 will be a dying breed in the com- to be a cost center? ing months and years, replaced and thrown on the scrap Consider the media world. It’s in a tail spin. TV adver- heap by Recruiter 3.0 who can combine a range of skills, tising is in decline as the number of channels proliferates, including: and the goal of capturing and messaging to core markets becomes harder and more fragmented. • PR and messaging Print media is also in decline. Again, so many news chan- • Marketing nels on the web and ways of getting news means that print • Direct Marketing media advertising is in decline as advertisers struggle to mes- • Market segmentation sage to their core audiences. • Candidate relationship management Recruiters are in a core position. • Sales As they build mass communities on social media and build • Presentation and communication skills their recruiting databases, they are creating their own mes- saging vehicles. Are your recruiters ready? As recruiting departments struggle for budgets to invest Is your recruitment leader ready? in employment brand activity, who not cross-charge your All will unravel in the coming months and years and we in-house marketing department to advertise on your Face- will see which companies can be transparent, and build and book/Twitter page? Why not cross charge your internal mar- engage communities. Will yours? keting team to advertise to your recruitment database via targeted emails? Indeed, you may even get to a point where there is such traffic to your corporate blog site that exter- This paper is an insight into the strategy of Autodesk Talent nal companies want to pay to advertise on your blog. Acquisition in the next 12 months in which much will change Imagine that: recruiting moves from being a cost center to and be updated to reflect this philosophy. Please feel free to judge a profit center! Not as far-fetched as you would imagine. us against our own criteria in the coming months. Matthew Jeffery is the head of EMEA talent acquisition and global talent brand for Autodesk. He is the former global director of talent brand for Electronic Arts. He was the highly rated spring 2010 ERE Spring Expo chairman and keynote speaker and was the UK Recruitment Personality of the Year 2010. Amy McKee is the global director of talent acquisition for Autodesk.34 Journal of Corporate Recruiting Leadership | | June 2011 ©2011 ERE Media, Inc.