In a competitive job market, the question is no longer, “Why should we hire you?”—it’s “Why should I work here?”
By Tierney McAfee
Company branding is important, but it isn’t everything—especially when it comes to attracting the best talent for an organization. In a job market where the unemployment rate is historically low, organizations must work harder than ever to incentivize job candidates.
And according to Adam Godson, vice president of global technology solutions for recruitment process outsourcing partner Cielo, the majority of companies are going about it all wrong.
“I think most companies have their career sites written backwards, where they don’t answer the ‘What’s in it for me?’ question that candidates want to know,” Godson says. “If you look at most career sites, it’s a lot of ‘we, we, we. We were founded in this year and we have these values.’ And I think what candidates are actually looking for is, ‘Why, why, why? Why is this company for me? Why would I work there?’”
LinkedIn’s The Ultimate List of Employer Brand Statistics report shows that more than half of job seekers conduct thorough research about a brand before even applying, seeking out company websites and social media accounts to learn more about an employer. The same study found that the No. 1 obstacle that job candidates experience is not knowing what it would be like to work at an organization.
“Some brands, especially some of the new retail brands out there right now, are leaning in pretty heavily on who they are and what they stand for as a way to tie in values to people who might be working in their storefronts,” Godson says, adding that organizations in the high-volume hourly and corporate spaces also use branding as a key hiring tool.
Beyond selling candidates on the company and its culture, however, it’s important for organizations to use the hiring process to demonstrate how the candidates themselves will make an impact, Godson says.
“It’s effective, just making sure people understand exactly what it’s like to work for an organization and be, as people say, your whole self in an organization, and find yourself there in the things that they do as an organization,” Godson says.