Recruiting In The Digital Age: What's It All About?

Marc Havercroft

Ask any business about its top challenges for 2017, and odds are, recruiting and retaining talent are somewhere on that list. Organisations are realizing more and more that their workforce is in fact their greatest asset, so prioritizing your talent only makes sense.

“For recruiters to ensure success in disrupted times, we must embrace the fact that recruitment is merging with marketing,” says Greg Savage, a leading authority on recruitment. “What’s more, the future of recruitment is candidates, and candidates are behaving like consumers, so we need a business model that is based on consumer marketing tactics. It will take a big mind shift for many recruiters to make the switch. Think of it like this: Advertising interrupts. Marketing attracts.”

Recruiters put their marketing hat on

No one can deny the value of a killer employer brand (ahem, Google). The next question is: Who owns the employer brand? Whether it is a collaboration between HR and marketing, or one or the other taking the lead, I think we can agree that it is time for HR to put its marketing hat on.
Greg is clear about what this successful merging of skills look like: “A few blogs and some sporadic tweets is not a marketing strategy.

Social is not a fad, or a task, or a project. You have to embed social in your everyday recruitment activities.

In fact, it’s not a social strategy you need. It’s a fully integrated digital marketing strategy, which will include social, brand, carefully considered content marketing, CRM and a wide range of technologies.

“I will say it categorically. Every recruitment agency or in house, should really operate as a digital marketing agency.” -Greg Savage

So how do we ensure that we are moving with the times?

“A good start to assess whether your business is on track is to honestly assess and answer these six questions,” Greg suggests (these apply to corporate talent acquisition and third-party agency recruiters equally):

•      Are target candidates aware your company exists?

•      Are your jobs readily found when your target market searches?

•      Is your website messaging targeted to your candidate personas?

•      Can candidates easily engage with your company on social and mobile?

•      Is your apply process frictionless and welcoming?

•      Are you top of mind when that great candidate is ready to make a career move?

Simplifying the application process

The power between talent and recruitment has shifted – hiring is now a seller’s market. Job seekers expect a straightforward, expedited process; if one company takes too long to acknowledge their application or makes applying difficult, chances are that talent will promptly move right along to the next opportunity.

Data analytics, but not as you currently know it

Social sourcing, talent pools, and other digital profiles have hugely broadened the selection employers have to choose from. But with this opportunity, so too presents a challenge: In the time it takes to research and narrow down your top selections, you may have lost these talents to another company that was able to streamline this process, allowing them to reach out faster.

The answer? Data and analytics. Just in the way businesses utilize the vast amount of data available on consumers to make strategic decisions, this data-first approach will soon be the norm for recruiters to rely upon analytics to decipher intelligent insights from active and passive candidates alike, which will then assist them to make an informed decision, in an expedited manner.

The rules of the recruiting game might have changed in the digital world, but the basics of human relationship-building haven’t. Technology plays a big part in a successful digital recruiting approach, but ultimately it’s all about letting your prospective candidates know that you know them, you care about them, and you want them to be a part of your extraordinary team.

Infographic credit: LinkedIn

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Marc Havercroft

About Marc Havercroft

Marc Havercroft, COO & Vice President Strategy, brings more than 20 years of experience within the future workforce strategy and transformation, helping clients adapt their HR strategy to meet the opportunity of the new digital world and the future workforce needed. His expertise includes advisory & strategy and workforce design for organizations going through major change as well as new entrants into EMEA, North America, and APJ & Greater China regions from both green field to M&A structures. Marc has worked across industries from financial services, Telco, energy, media, digital social, and public sector, turning current and global trends into meaningful workforce strategies that deliver.