As a Marketing professional at a company that produces technology for Human Resources professionals, I’m coming to realize that Marketing and HR have a lot in common. At the end of the day, we’re both selling something – Marketing is selling a product or service, while HR is selling an employment opportunity. There are certain techniques that are revolutionizing the field of Marketing, and I believe that HR can embrace some of these tools to gain an advantage when it comes to recruiting.
To begin, let’s take a look at the foundation of marketing: the marketing mix, also known as the 4 Ps.
1.Product: An item that satisfies a consumer want or need; either a good or service.
2.Price: The amount the consumer pays for the product.
3.Promotion: The methods of communication used to provide information about the product.
4.Place: The distribution channels through which the product is provided for consumers to access.
Now let’s translate this to HR:
1.Product (Opportunity): The position, culture, and employment brand you offer to candidates.
2.Price (Value): The compensation package you’re extending to the right candidate.
3.Promotion (Communication): The communication you use to recruit and source candidates.
4.Place (Recruitment Channel): The channels through which you broadcast your opportunities.
Cover the Basics with Product & Price
You may not have an abundance of control over your “product” and your “price,” since the job descriptions and salaries will be dictated in large part by Hiring Managers and budgets. However, you do have control over your company culture, your employment brand, and some of the peripheral benefits of working at your organization (the “perks” of the job – game rooms, free food, etc.).
Build a strong company culture predicated upon shared values and a strong mission, and clearly articulate it to potential candidates on your corporate career site and social media accounts. Take advantage of images and video to brand these properties, and give candidates a glimpse inside your organization. Show candidates what it’s like to work for your company, and how they’d fit in.
Stand out from the Crowd with Promotion & Place
Marketing has developed a wide variety of tools to promote products. HR has adopted some of these methods, but in my opinion, they can expand upon these tactics by taking advantage of the channels and techniques that are currently revolutionizing Marketing: social, mobile, search, and automation.
Social: By now, it should go without saying that HR should take advantage of social networks for recruitment. LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter are all prime locations for finding candidates for jobs, and there are tools available that make it easy to get the word out about your opportunities. Make sure your job postings are social-optimized to allow for easy sharing, and make it easy for candidates to follow you and receive updates from your company.
Mobile: It’s estimated that by 2015 more people will access the internet via a mobile device than via a desktop computer. It’s important to mobile-optimize your career site to provide a seamless experience for job-seekers searching on mobile devices. Make it easy for candidates to find relevant jobs, regardless of how they’re accessing your career site.
Search: There is so much information out there; it’s hard to make sense of it all. Do your candidates a favor, and make it easy for them to find your opportunities. Search engines index millions of pages of job-related data, so you need to make sure your candidates can find your jobs easily. Make sure your jobs and career sites are search engine optimized so they show up on page one search results, allowing candidates to come straight to your career site (thus cutting out the job board middleman).
Automation: Nurture your candidates through automated communication campaigns that target them when the time is right. If you’re using a robust sourcing solution, you can build Talent Pools that you can enter directly into “drip” email campaigns that use logic to send communications at a determined interval. You can also set logic to send communications to certain pools when a relevant opportunity opens up.