Today’s candidates have expectations, and they’re different than what past generations expressed. If you’re going to attract — much less retain — their attention, you need to connect with them in a meaningful way. It starts with not just understanding their expectations, but also knowing how to deliver on them as a company.
Why does this matter? CandEs Research has shown that when individuals feel connected to — and engaged with — an organization, they are more receptive to messages about the brand and curious about its employment opportunities. Don’t take it seriously and your employer branding and recruitment tactics will simply fall flat.
A clear understanding of company culture
During a time of low unemployment, candidates know they have options. Therefore, they want to work for an organization that’s aligned with their values and aspirations. Meeting this expectation is essential to successful talent acquisition and recruitment.
Don’t underestimate the value candidates place on having an emotional connection to your brand. In the consumer world, people fall in love with brands, buy products and become loyal advocates of said label. An employer brand is similar in that people fall in love with brands and “buy” jobs. After all, joining an organization is a major life change — it effects not just workdays but also time spent with friends and family.
Being emotionally connected to an employer and a career drives commitment. Therefore, it’s critical that your organization defines how you identify as an employer. Then, you have to convey clearly and effectively so you can attract right-fit talent.
Insight into the employee experience
If today’s job seekers are going to “buy in” to your brand — or pursue a job with your company — they want to know how their day-to-day work life will play out. Video-rich, day-in-the-life-type content — told through the eyes of actual employees — expresses authenticity and provides a window into why a potential employee should give you the time of day.
The photography you feature matters too. You can amplify your employer brand with photography of real employees. Study after study shows authenticity is top of mind among today’s candidates, and stock photography simply won’t lend convey the right message.
Finally, leveraging personas can help you personalize job seekers’ experience, ensuring they are served content that relates to their search habits. Say they’re searching for supervisor jobs. Your career site should serve them content that’s personalized to supervisor testimonials so they can imagine themselves in the role firsthand.
Team that with enhanced job descriptions that drive conversion and get users to return to your career site, thereby driving further personalization. What’s more, an enhanced job description should express what it’s like to work for your organization and make clear why a candidate should want to. Clearly and concisely written with the experience, qualifications and required skills at the forefront, it should favor clear, inviting and human language that speaks to the candidate — not at them. This way, candidates get a sense of whether they’re a good culture fit for your organization.
A sense of connection to the overall brand
From a candidate — not to mention employee — perspective, emotional drivers resonate. That’s especially true of today’s younger workforce. They want to believe there’s a deeper meaning to their employment, and they want to take pride in their work and the “community” they work for. In fact, the vast majority of candidates won’t consider working for a company they think lacks loyalty to them or to their shared values.
Once they’re in the door, however, your job as an organization continues — those same employees want to feel like they are actively driving your vision. They also want to experience your organization as authentic and forthcoming —the brand it claimed to be. That’s when employees become advocates of your organization, driving quality talent in the door through talent advocacy and word of mouth.
Meeting candidate expectations at work
One of our clients, Hilton Grand Vacations (HGV) accomplished these things in an inspiring way. HGV employed AI, machine learning and automation, while solidifying its employer brand.
To accomplish this, HGV overhauled its career website and enlisted a mobile-first, fully responsive approach. With Google Cloud Talent Solution and machine learning-powered search capabilities at work on its site, HGV efficiently, accurately delivers enhanced job descriptions to right-fit candidates in order to increase engagement. Everything is complemented by robust content and personalized, day-in-the-life video testimonials that correlate to job searches.
Candidates can picture what it’s like to work for the company, and they’re “buying in.” In the first seven weeks since going live with its Google Cloud Talent Solution-powered job search, HGV saw a 21 percent reduction on job search bounce rates and 8 percent fewer multiple search results when it comes to page views. Additionally, the company saw an 8 percent reduction in time spent on job searches and a 5 percent lift in conversion rates from job searches as compared to the previous six months.
Getting it right lets you be a strategic partner and helps you bring the right talent in to transform your business. Creating meaningful candidate experiences ultimately brings the right people, to the right place (your organization) at the right time.
Want to know the top 5 HR technology trends on the horizon for the year ahead? View our free webinar on demand featuring Madeline Laurano, Founder of Aptitude Research, Susan Russell, Senior Manager, Talent Acquisition at Nestlé Waters North America, and Symphony Talent's Shannon Seery - Download now.