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Can you sell a car without anyone ever seeing a picture of it?

by | Oct 28, 2022 | EX & EVP

If you are trying to recruit right now, I really feel for you. Firstly, it appears there are very few candidates out there if the latest stats are anything to go by (excluding our friends in the tech sector – we feel for you after the last week or so). Talking of stats, it would also appear that you might be losing people faster than you can hire them. Well, maybe not that bad

If you’re lucky enough to be getting candidates to the interview stage, you then have to sell your company. With any luck, your product or service is going places and building a great reputation. That will have piqued the interest of your candidate, but a great product isn’t all your candidate is looking for. They want to know what it’s going to be like to work for you.

And as any salesperson knows, the best way to sell anything is to show your product (or in this case company) in action. Demonstrate its qualities, get the customer (candidate in this case) to marvel at its sleek design, or feel, or smell. See what’s under the bonnet etc.

The place where you work

For many organisations once upon a time, this would mean showing off the office. The candidate would arrive, be impressed with the office layout, see a few people engaging in good, humoured chat and get a very early feel for the place. As a good interviewer, you would be well versed in relaxing your candidate, the layout of the room would say a lot, your body language would be obviously warm, and first impressions would have left a mark.

Are you even interviewing in person now? Maybe, maybe not. If you are not in the service industry you probably still have an office/place of work, but it might only have a few people in it today. How is the candidate supposed to get an idea of your culture, whether they can imagine themselves sharing your purpose, or crucially whether ‘someone like me’ is thriving in your environment.

Your Employer Brand

Employer brand has come a long way in recent years. In today’s world, it has to go further.

Once upon a time, this consisted of very little else than the contractual elements a candidate could expect. Salary and benefits – from bonus, pension and holiday to private health if you are lucky, pizza Thursdays and beer fridge Fridays. The more progressive started to address the experiential elements – what the long-term opportunities are through learning and development, leadership style, the office environment and so on.

Someone like me

Very few addressed the key elements of not only why someone joins a company but stays and thrives there long-term. The emotional elements that really help to gel a team and company together – shared purpose and safety. Your candidate would get a feel for this over a few interviews in your office, then it is expected that this has to be lived to be understood…that will happen in time and has to be experienced.

In our brave new world, the one where people meet less regularly, the one where there is less informal and incidental chat and more getting ‘straight down to business’ on video conferencing, the one where you might someone might be balancing a laptop on their knee in their bedroom three days a week – how does your candidate know that they are going to have an emotional connection and want to be a long-term employee at this organisation?

Your employer brand has to be about the beating heart of your organisation – your people. It has to feature their stories, their experiences, not just the good but also that which can be improved for authenticity. It has to show that they are progressing, thriving in whatever circumstances your organisation is in, with the support that they need to succeed and the opportunity to progress.

It has to be their story, combined with your ambition. So, let’s start telling it.

If you’re interested in giving candidates a true insight into working life at your organisation, drop us a message. We’d love to talk.

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