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Top Ways to Make Your Company More Marketable to Elusive Candidates

Unable to find talent in today's tight labor market? The best way to break through the noise is to think like a marketer and communicate the employer brand values that you can deliver on.

Top Ways to Make Your Company More Marketable to Elusive Candidates

By: Daniel Bortz

These are challenging times for companies (including yours, perhaps) who are struggling to compete for in-demand talent–and for good reason. 

Late last year economists at Goldman Sachs predicted that the U.S. unemployment rate was on pace to drop to 3.8% in 2018. That new low came to pass this May. Their forecast also said that unemployment could tumble as low as 3.5% by the end of 2019. The last time unemployment was 3.5% was December 1969, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

As the labor market continues to tighten, it would be all too easy to settle for less, or worse, not hire the talent your company needs. So how can you break through? The best way to do that is with a hiring strategy that breaks through the noise and attracts the best job seekers to your business. Fortunately, with so many marketing tools at your disposal, it’s easier than ever to find, hire, and nurture your employees.

“To win the hearts and minds of the individuals you want to hire, businesses have to invest more in the marketing side of recruiting,” says Kevin Grossman, president of global programs at Talent Board. “You have to nurture your pipeline of recruits, just like marketers have to do when they’re selling a product.”

Jeff Smith, a partner at global marketing firm Prophet, agrees. “The role of a marketer is to attract and retain customers. The role of a recruiter is to attract and retain talent, so the objectives are strikingly similar. But marketing shifts the focus to the job seeker: What does the job seeker want? What makes potential hires tick?” 

By adopting a marketer’s mindset, how you recruit talent can also improve your company’s reputation and visibility in the job market. “‘How do job seekers perceive your organization?’ is one of the most important questions for employers today,” Smith says. 

Not sure how where to start? These expert tips will help you adopt a marketing mindset in 2018 and make your company more marketable to job seekers.

Brand your business as a company with a conscience
Today’s job seekers are looking to work at companies that give back to the community, says Julie Friedman Steele, board chair and CEO at World Future Society, a membership group for researchers who study changes across various industries. 

In fact, data from Monster’s post-apply job survey of nearly 400,000 applicants ranked company values as one of the top six reasons that they applied to the job. 

You can use your company’s website, marketing materials, and social media accounts to promote your organization’s philanthropy projects. However, “there has to be authenticity to it,” says Steele. “Job seekers today are adept at assessing what your company’s values are and they can see through false marketing if you’re not actually doing philanthropy.”

A bonus: Company-wide philanthropy can also have a positive impact on your current employees. 2016 research from the University of Notre Dame’s Mendoza College of Business found corporate charity can boost employee engagement.

Promote your company’s training and development opportunities
A growing number of workers want opportunities to gain new skills, says Parminder Jassal, head of the Learn + Work Futures Group at the Institute for the Future. In fact, 59% of Millennials say opportunities to learn and grow are extremely important to them when applying for a job, a recent Gallup poll found. Thus, to attract top talent “your company has to offer options that combine work and learning,” Jassal says.

When connecting with prospective job candidates—whether through job fairs, social media, or conferences—talk about what employee training and career development opportunities your company offers employees such as certification programs or funding for attending industry events. 

Reach recruits on social media
Many companies are using social media marketing to improve their customer service and to engage consumers, says Grossman, adding that businesses can apply this strategy to improve their recruiting. 

“Some progressive companies like T-Mobile are doing Facebook video streams showing what a day in the life of an employee at the company is like,” Grossman says. Businesses are also beginning to use Twitter chats to answer questions from job seekers, Grossman adds. 

Instagram stories—a feature that lets you post photos and videos on your feed for 24 hours—can also help your company reach job seekers. For instance, you can use stories to share photos from a fun event, like the company’s holiday or an employee appreciation day. 

Monster job ads let you target candidates on social media, which, according to Nielsen’s 2016 Social Media Report, is where they are 3+ hours a day anyway. 

Integrate artificial intelligence and machine learning into your marketing
To stay relevant to today’s job seekers, your organization has to embrace the latest recruiting technology. As Smith puts it: “If your company doesn’t adopt new technology, you’re not going to attract the best talent.” 

Some companies are now using chatbots on their job posting websites, Grossman says. These computer programs—traditionally used to send customers instant messages when they land on business-to-consumer website—can help job seekers with basic tasks, like submitting a job application and troubleshooting technical issues. 

Grossman predicts more businesses will begin to adopt artificial intelligence to recruit new talent. “Robots aren’t taking over recruiting any time soon, but A.I. is helping empower recruiters with new tools,” Grossman says. 

Show your commitment to work-life balance
Work-life balance is a top priority among job seekers today. Nearly one-third of job candidates cited work-life balance as a reason for applying to jobs, according to a recent Monster survey of more than 400,000 job applicants. 

If you offer flexible working arrangements, then clearly outline them in your job descriptions and on your job board company profile pages. You can also take a creative approach by sharing videos with job seekers that show employees describing how they enjoy a balance between their working and personal lives.

You can post these videos on not only your company’s website but also through video profiles that integrate into your Monster job postings to give job seekers a view of what it’s like to work at your company.

Inspired to get your company’s story in front of the top candidates? Monster’s Employer Branding Solutions, which include video profiles, branded job ads and company profiles, can help you position your company to attract the talent you need to succeed in 2018.