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Engagement Starts Before They Walk Through the Door

26. July 2018 08:44

By: John Broer, In2Great

Think about all those future employees whom you haven’t even met.  It’s hard to do but it is absolutely necessary to think about the impression you make to prospective employees as a potential employer.  That’s where we begin to look at Employer Branding as a best practice within our companies. It’s the strategy you use to position and promote your company to a desired target audience.  In order to do that, a company has to have a pretty good idea of what kind of culture it wants to cultivate and offer up to its future associates. The challenge sets in when companies promote one type of culture and a new hire finds something entirely different.  For example, a company may present itself as being very forward-thinking and progressive when it comes to employee development and cultural diversity - a progressive climate that encourages creativity and innovation. Who wouldn’t want to work there? All to often, though, companies present this attractive image that really isn’t representative of their work environment and when new hires realize this, they make for the door and look for a place that is more to their liking.  It is because of this that companies need to be realistic about what they offer as a place of employment. If it isn’t desirable, then improvements are in order and once those are made, then the company needs to brand itself by highlighting and promoting those qualities. Employer Branding begins with clearly understanding “why” the organization exists, what it does, and how it offers up its unique services and/or products. That messaging and “brand” is promoted to the marketplace in order to differentiate it from the competition and attract the right type of talent.  
Interview process
Companies can make their efforts during the hiring and recruiting steps much more effective by making sure that the words and language they use within their job descriptions are reflective of the kinds of drives, qualities, and traits they need in a person who occupies that role.  For example, if the position requires a high level of client interaction and for someone to be very relational and able to connect with customers naturally and quickly, you are likely to attract candidates that really enjoy that. Another example may involve a position that requires a person to work at a predictable and steady pace and the ability to work within a given structure with very little deviation.  While this does not guarantee that people who are not a good match will apply for the position, we can at least employ analytics to understand their natural drives and help us know if they are not a good fit and perhaps find a role for which they are better suited. Much time is wasted in the interview process on candidates that are not a good fit for the position. Using the right language in the job description along with understanding the analytics of their natural drives will save our recruiters time, frustration, and the chance for a bad hire.
So you’ve found a great candidate and they have accepted your offer.  Now we just wait for them to show up for their first day, right? Wrong.  Depending on the nature of the job and your particular situation, there are a number of things you can do before the actual onboarding process.  Bear in mind that their time may be limited because they are wrapping up with their soon-to-be former employer. Still, here are some things to consider sharing with them prior to “Day 1”:

  • Any history or background about the company.  You can start to build their awareness of the vision, culture, and core values of your company.  Written materials are fine but very effective messaging can be made in a short professional video from senior executives.
  • A welcome message from the hiring manager can initiate a positive connection and establish some early expectations.  Similar messages from team members can create an early sense of camaraderie.
  • Providing their onboarding schedule.  Depending on the position, mapping out the first one or two weeks lets a new hire know that their new employer is thinking ahead and preparing them for success.

Your “brand” as an employer speaks volumes to prospective employees either positively or negatively.  When you invest the time, resources, and analytics to create a place where the right people will find the right fit, you can expect better results in retention and performance. 

Learn more about this topic during John's presentation at the "Countertops & Architectural Surfaces Symposium" at the IWF 2018 Educaiton Conference.



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